Jordan Kahn: A Dallas-bred music man
Photos: Courtesy Jordan Kahn Music
In December 2023, Jordan Kahn performed at the Toyota Music Factory in Irving, Texas.

By Deb Silverthorn

Jordan Kahn has been keeping a beat since he was a child. Now, his Jordan Kahn Music Company entertains the masses from coast to coast. Under his reign, Kahn’s seven bands have performed at simchas and celebrations for thousands including celebrities and royalty, for presidents and their families, at countless locations including the one where it all began — the Aaron Family JCC.

“The music has always been the favorite part of what I do,” said Kahn, who more than 20 years ago played the cowardly lion in the J’s Camp Chai Creative Arts Camp production of “The Wizard of Oz,” Joseph in “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” and Daddy Warbucks in “Annie.”

“Even playing the same song over and over, it’s never the same song. If you’re ever having a ‘day,’ sing a song. It’s magical,” he said.

“I was only 3 years old, singing along to Frank Sinatra tunes while in the back seat of the car as we drove from Ohio to Dallas. ‘Under My Skin’ — loved it then, love it now,” said Kahn. His band had guests on the dance floor of the J’s Zale Auditorium last fall at the Oct. 21 Best. Date. Night. Ever event for parents, faculty and supporters of the Goldberg Early Childhood Center.

The J was just one of 1,000 events at which Kahn’s “Jordan Kahn Orchestra,” “Professor D,” “Georgia Bridgwater Orchestra,” “Taylor Pace Orchestra,” “Walton Strout Orchestra,” “Stratosphere” and “Manhattan” bands perform each year. Last Memorial Day, 30 events were covered by the seven bands.

Kahn’s musicians have entertained at b’nai mitzvah celebrations and weddings, at galas and fundraisers and special occasions, tinkling the ivories and crooning the night away with a client list that includes personalities from “Dancing With The Stars,” “The Bachelor” and “The Real Housewives.”

As a child, Jordan Kahn acted on the Aaron Family JCC stages performing in many shows, including as the cowardly lion in “The Wizard of Oz.”

“Entertainers exist to make life’s special moments come to life,” said Kahn. He listed Tony Bennett, Michael Bublé, Frank Sinatra and Jay Z, a diverse group, among his influences. Kahn lives in New York City, but he also maintains an office at Dallas’ One Arts Plaza. In December, as a “thank you” to many of his clients, he hosted his annual holiday season extravaganza at the Winspear Opera House.

Kahn is the son of Lori and Marc and brother of Julia (Todd) Bustard. The Columbus, Ohio, native was a member of B’nai B’rith Youth Organization’s Louis Brandeis chapter, served on the North Texas Oklahoma BBYO board and was active with Congregation Beth Torah’s United Synagogue Youth.

He graduated from Plano West Senior High School. Kahn, who plays piano and drums, participated in the school’s jazz band, choir and jazz choir.

“I’d come in and be doing music during ‘zero hour,’ before school, at lunch and I stayed after-school,” said Kahn. “Whenever time was free, that’s what I was doing.”

Kahn’s mother was an accountant who worked for Carol Abrams’ Amazing Events; his first “gig” was in her backyard. He was soon DJing school dances, BBYO and USY events, birthday parties and wedding receptions.

“Jordan was always terrific, creative and a pleasure to work with. I love that he’s gone on to create a more than respectable career,” said Abrams, now living in Newport Beach, California. “There’s nothing he wouldn’t do; he never said ‘no.’ He’s forged on with his education, talent and most of all his heart.”

“My Dad bought me my first equipment so I could do my mitzvah project around music. I made money doing what I loved most and I remember my first donation, of $5,000, to Make-A-Wish,” said Kahn. “Today that organization is so important to me and so is giving back. We provide over $1 million in entertainment each year to many charity events.” Besides Make-A-Wish, these include My Possibilities and Susan G. Komen.

His girlfriend, Stephanie Ritter, is an event planner for a global law firm. The two met through a mutual friend who, with Kahn, serves on the board of Wish Upon a Wedding.

Kahn went to Berklee School of Music, where he majored in vocal performance, music production and engineering. From the first band he started, with three members, to the now seven under his label, some with 30 members, he said that “it takes a village and it’s as much fun now as ever.”

After graduation he returned to Dallas, where, 10 years ago, he founded Jordan Kahn Music Company. After a year of the company’s being him alone, he added Georgia Bridgwater and Taylor Pace to his programs and soon the trio were booked every weekend.

“We built Georgia and Taylor into their own groups but we still have clients who want the three of us,” said Kahn. “It’s rare and people go to great lengths, but that’s still really cool.”

Kahn himself is typically booked more than 12 to 18 months in advance.

“Jordan is an incredible entertainer but even more so a sweet person who would and does help others however he can,” said his kvelling mother. “He is a gourmet chef; he’s resourceful, creative and a problem-solver in work and in all areas of his life.”

Kahn’s father also bursts with pride, not only at his son’s professional success but even more because of the caring person he is.

“He has built a beautiful business and in that he’s built great partnerships with his musicians, clients and vendors who he really cares about,” said Marc. “He’s had perfect pitch since he was a kid. He started this business believing in himself and he’s done great things way beyond our dreams or his own.”

“I’ve got you under my skin. I’ve got you deep in the heart of me,” sang Sinatra and so still sings Kahn at every show. “So deep in my heart that you’re really a part of me. I’ve got you under my skin.”Jordan Kahn: A Dallas-bred music man

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