Tenor and soprano saxophonist and flutist Susan Goodman (also professionally known as Sooz) has performed as a jazz artist in Boston, New York, Atlantic City, and Philadelphia for many years, in a variety of venues, from clubs and restaurants to casinos and private events. Central Park West, however, is Susan's first (long overdue!) jazz release. She is happy to hear it is being very well-received, and getting lots of airplay on Temple University's WRTI. (Thank you, 'RTI!) Central Park West will help introduce listeners and jazz venues to this "new addition" to fine Philadelphia-area saxophonists who has been hidden in plain sight.
Susan followed a decidedly non-traditional path to jazz. She began as a student of classical flute music, but was blown away into the world of jazz when she heard Eric Dolphy's flute/bass duet with Richard Davis on Duke Ellington's Come Sunday, from the Ironman LP. Coltrane Ballads had a similar effect. When she discovered Wayne Shorter and his beautiful LP Native Dancer, she fell in love with the soprano sax and was moved to play her first reed instrument (even though folks said, "you can't start on soprano! that's too hard to play!") Going backwards in time, listening to Wayne's classic Blue Note recordings, she fell in love again, and had to play those gorgeous Wayne tunes on tenor.
Since then Susan has listened to and been inspired by so many other great musicians, composers, and vocalists including Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson, Miles Davis, Jimmy Heath, Stan Getz, Michael Brecker, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Joni Mitchell, Dinah Washington, Betty Carter, Ella Fitzgerald, Carmen McCrae, Nancy Wilson, Rosa Passos, Mingus, Monk, Metheny, etc, etc. Susan studied formally with Jerry Bergonzi and Stan Strickland, got an occasional (precious) lesson with reed master Joe Allard, and heard lots of great jazz in Boston (at The Jazz Workshop and Lulu White's) before moving to New York, where her ears were further opened up. There she heard amazing jazz even before she stepped out on the street: Joe Lovano was her downstairs neighbor, and his beautiful sound filled the stairwell.
Susan was also inspired by her children, Dylan and Miles, to write and record five award-winning CDs of original music for children, on her own label Soozaroo Music. Written in a wide range of styles--from Jazz to Afro-Pop to Salsa and Reggae--featuring fun, sing-able lyrics, kids love these unique songs, as do their parents, who appreciate that the writing, musicianship, and production of these "children's CDs" is not just for kids.
Sooz' most recent CD for the education market is STAND UP! SPEAK OUT! It features songs that encourage kids to "Do the Right Thing" and Stand Up! Speak Out! against prejudice and bullying. Sooz lyrics are included in the NJ State Bar Association's Anti-Bullying Curriculum and the NJ Dept of Education Holocaust-Genocide Curriculum as effective tools to combat prejudice and bullying. Sooz continues to present Community Concerts and School Assembly Programs based on STAND UP! SPEAK OUT! and her other Cool Music for Kids. Currently enrolled in the Teaching Artist Certificate Program at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Susan has developed a Songwriting Artist in Residency Program that can be booked individually or in conjunction with the Stand Up! Speak Out! Assembly Program.