Mission Rebel No. 1 is a work of music that had its premiere Friday, September 22, 2023 at Brava Theater in San Francisco. The subject of this song cycle is the life of my father, Rev. Jesse James, including his work with the Mission Rebels (also known as Mission Rebels In Action), a youth-employment-and-empowerment organization.
You can read more about the Mission Rebels here.
This work has been under development for the last couple of years; the first work-in-progress performance was presented as a livestream on June 11, 2021. Subsequent work-in progress performances were presented in October 2022 and January 2023.
Performing this work:
Beth Custer – clarinet, voice
Keith Lawrence – viola, voice
Alan Williams – trombone, voice
David James – guitar, voice, composition
Allegra Bandy – mezzo soprano
Sólás Burke-Lalgee – tenor
Lisa Mezzacappa – bass
John Hanes – drums
These presentations were supported by InterMusic SF's Musical Grant Program; the Zellerbach Family Foundation; and the San Francisco Arts Commission, which also supported the composition and development of the work;
Additional support–material, logistic, and recollective–has come from:
Alex Cherian/Bay Area TV Archive
Paul Dresher/Independent Jazz Alliance/A Safe Place to Play
David Miller/ Clay Geerdes Archives
The Lost Church
Bird & Beckett Books and Records
Medicine for Nightmares Bookstore and Gallery
Archival footage provided by:
In memory of my mother, Dolores James, and my father’s mother, Anna Mae Anderson, the two of whom never met on Earth.
Jesse Joseph James
October 6, 1928 - May 31, 2005