For some, music is an accessory—a swatch of dramatic color readily available to clothe a mood or splash across life’s otherwise flat surfaces. For others, music is the thread of their lives, ineffably woven into the fabric of who they are, and as inextricable as the length of their stride or the sound of their voice.
Such is the case for musician Patrick Storey and his fellow members of the Los Angeles vocal jazz quintet Storeytime, who came together in the summer of 2009 with the common goal of expanding their musical gifts together and sharing them with the Los Angeles community.
Storeytime is the co-creation of Patrick’s father Jim Storey and professional musician and teacher Beth Rohde. Beth, along with her husband Matt Rohde—associate musical director for American Idol— founded the wildly successful Coast Music Conservatory in Hermosa Beach, California. It was at Coast Music that Beth and fellow professional vocalist and teacher Farah Kidwai met and began training the astonishing Patrick Storey.
Patrick is a treasure among treasures, a musician born with perfect pitch and the ability to recall musical phrases with mathematical precision—natural gifts that fewer than 1 in 10,000 can boast. Yet even more astounding is the fact that Patrick was diagnosed with autism at the age of two, and faced struggles with learning disabilities and language throughout his formative years. Like most people, the key to Patrick only became clear when he entered his teen years. This was when Patrick’s profound musical abilities compelled Jim Storey to enroll Patrick in piano and voice lessons. Under the tutelage of “Teacher Beth” and “Teacher Farah” (as he lovingly refers to them), Patrick blossomed to become a complete musician, able to read music, sing in multiple languages, and boast a solo repertoire of jazz, classical, pop and musical theater styles.
Yet Beth and Jim noted that Patrick seemed to especially light up when he sang in groups, particularly on challenging vocal jazz music. They realized they had a unique opportunity to surround Patrick with talented musicians and form a singing group that could perform professionally around Southern California. Thus, Storeytime was born, not only to give Patrick a group performance platform, but for all its members to take their creative energies into the community as a major part of their professional livelihoods.
With this in mind, Jim, Beth, Patrick and Farah set about holding auditions to round out the group, eventually adding two young men from a talented field of applicants. Professional musicians Michael Kohl and Jamey Schrick came on board as the fourth and fifth members of Storeytime, adding their years of training and rich musical pedigrees to the mix.
Just weeks after Storeytime began rehearsing, interest in the group was already mounting. The group made its debut in September of 2009 at the 2nd Annual Evening for Autism benefit in Newport Beach, California, performing before a crowd of 600. Storeytime has gone on to perform to countless packed venues around Los Angeles and the South Bay, and even won “Best Jazz Vocal Group” at the 2010 Los Angeles Music Awards. In the studio, Storeytime has provided back-up vocals on Beth Rohde’s forthcoming solo album, and has recorded with three-time Grammy Award winner Anton Pukshanksy.
In 2011, Storeytime reluctantly bid farewell to Teacher Farah as she relocated to Northern California. Yet the group quickly seized the opportunity to become even more dynamic, as they welcomed in teen wunderkind Kieran Moriah, whose astonishing vocal gifts were also discovered and fostered at Coast Music Conservatory. Seamlessly slipping into the big shoes left by Farah, Kieran has added another unique dimension to an already one-of-a-kind ensemble.
Storeytime is a brilliantly diverse musical group, comfortably shifting from smooth Brazilian bossa nova, to hale standards by Basie, Wes Montgomery, and George Gershwin, to bold new takes on modern hits by Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, The Police, and more. With a growing catalog of the finest five-part jazz, standard, Broadway, pop and rock arrangements—most of them original—from the top arrangers in the business, and a community of the west coast’s most accomplished musicians in support, Storeytime is built for spellbinding and unpredictable shows that weave together sterling musicianship with inspirational good vibes…plus the occasional improvised sung story. There’s something for everyone, not just lovers of tight jazz harmony.
Most importantly, Storeytime reflects the profound vision of Beth, Jim and Patrick: to achieve the highest levels of professional entertainment while simultaneously inspiring audiences, as they witness the power of music to set free the expression waiting inside all of us.