Please allow me to introduce myself.
I'm Jim Luce, one of New Jersey's newest residents, and I'm a man with an interesting habit - I look for beauty. All day - everyday. I don't know why I do it…. but i've been doing it all my life. Everyday. Looking for the spice in life that makes it all real.
After 30 plus years of looking for it uptown and downtown, in Queens, the Bronx and Pennsylvania, I'm discovering that special wonder that comes with feeling I am where I belong, and I belong here - in New Jersey.
It's different here. And I like it very much. Yes, in beautiful downtown Rahway.
My kind of place. That Jersey sophistication.
We're very cool here in New Jersey, but we don't have to work hard to let people know about how cool we really are. That's for New Yorkers! I have lost the art of the distant gaze.
Here, we can relax and just do our thing.
And my thing has always been jazz… and classical music, video, photography and storytelling and making all kinds of music.
And that's what I do all day - everyday. Right here in New Jersey in the heart of the new Rahway Arts District.
Time to dig today's concerts. Dexter Gordon in his prime.... and Joe Henderson and Pat Metheny. Oh yeah!! This is the magic I'm talking about.
That's part of my story.
What is yours? I'd like to know. We all have one.
I'm looking for beauty here, and I'm writing today to tell you that you are beautiful and I am looking for stories to tell about work and about service to others.
It's in our DNA as residents of New Jersey.
Our piano tuner has dedicated his entire life to making pianos easy to play and great to listen to. He is everyday genius!
The list is nearly infinite. The architectural plasterer. Your kid's teacher. The kitchen cabinetmaker who has spent his entire life practicing the saxophone, and is way more interesting for doing so.
Kieron Williamson is a nine year old painter who lives in England and has just bought his parents a new house with the proceeds from selling his paintings. He should move to New Jersey! Check him out.
The photographer. The Coach. The cupcake maker.
Are you making a difference?
Who are you? Where are you?
And what is your everyday genius??
What is your story?
Here's a bit of mine...
I'm a Peabody Award winning radio producer in my 4th decade of making radio, records, (yes LPs and CDs) and presenting live concerts.
This is my 19th year producing the Caramoor Jazz Festival in Katonah, New York in Westchester County.
Jazz. It's a royal pleasure to make, to listen to and to turn other people on to music.
This is how I spend much of my time here… planning the next great event where we get together and discover just how sweet life can be.
Good friends passing time. Building community. Making Art. Living. Here in New Jersey.
People ask me, "How is Rahway? - I have to come and check it out" and slowly but surely, they are coming to Rahway to visit us. Very cool.
We offer a little break to people from the pressures of living in these crazy economic times. A little music. Some Art. Socializing.
Musicians are coming to Rahway to play the handmade Fazioli Italian piano at our little oasis. We call it our culture salon, studio and music space called LIGHTSOUNDSPACE. WIth only 60 seats, it is an intimate situation. You are on stage with the musicians. People are starting to discover us. Right here in New Jersey.
They are the cool ones I was just talking about.
So my friends, thank you for sharing a moment with me on my first blog for patch.com.
Who are you? Let me hear from you.
Before I forget, on Thursday of this week, we have two records that are in competition at the Latin Grammys in Las Vegas.
Both for record of the year.
One in the Classical category we produced with Rey Rodriguez, a Cuban producer based in Berlin, with fellow Jersey resident Adonis Gonzalez. He is one of a group of amazing musicians from the island who have made life better for us by coming here and practicing their craft - the art of Cuban piano.
The other record up for record of the year is from a session we did last October at the Jerome L. Greene Performance Space at New York Public Radio. You probably have heard of WNYC and WQXR? Sure. Here's a link to the video of that night. I hope you like to dance. The music is hot!! And Oscar Hijuelos, the Pulitzer prize winner for his book, The Mambo Kings, also was in the house that magic night - October 21st, 2010
I'll be back to you shortly with the results.
Genevieve is my current wife - I tell her that because I find it keeps her on her toes! We work and play and live without boundaries right here in Rahway New Jersey.
Time is too precious to live any other way.
Life is what you make it, and it's time to tell me your story. Your ordinary, plain old everyday genius.
I'll be sharing mine with you - in real time - as it happens, from LightSoundSpace in the heart of the Rahway Arts District. Drop by anytime.
Enjoy the ride.
Rahway Arts District NJ