Thara MemoryArticle from Willamette Week.

The Grammy-award winning jazz musician and educator Thara Memory was indicted by the Multnomah County District Attorney’s office Friday on eight counts of sexual abuse in the third degree, two counts of attempted sexual abuse in the third degree and one count of harassment.

All the alleged crimes are misdemeanors.

The alleged crimes took place between July 1, 2013 and December 31, 2015 and involve four alleged victims, all female, and two of them under the age of 18. Memory’s attorney was not immediately available for comment.

Memory, 68, a trumpeter, won a Grammy in 2013 for his arrangement of the song “City of Roses,” which appeared on the album “Radio Music Society,” by perhaps his best known protégé, Esperanza Spalding. Others who have studied with him include the saxophonists Patrick Lamb and Hailey Niswanger.

Memory originally came to Portland in 1970, touring with the R&B musician Joe Tex, according to the Oregon Encyclopedia. He produced two albums over the years and has been a fixture of the local jazz scene, often playing with drummers Mel Brown and Obo Addy.

Memory is also a longtime music teacher, first at Wilson High School and, more recently, at the American Music Program in Northeast Portland. The program, located at King Elementary School, trains aspiring musicians and its Pacific Crest Jazz Orchestra regularly wins competitions around the country.

The Berklee College of Music awarded Memory an honorary doctorate in music in 2014.

The Portland Police sex crimes unit received a complaint about Memory in September 2016, the bureau said in a news a release this morning. Their investigation led to the discovery of other alleged incidents going back to 2014.

Memory was booked and released this morning. His next court date is April 17.


If you or someone you care about was sexually abused and you would like advice from an attorney about the rights and options for victims of child sexual abuse, please contact Crew Janci LLP today for a free, confidential consultation at 1-888-407-0224 or by using our private online form.  We will treat you with discretion and respect.

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About Peter Janci

Peter has represented more than one hundred victims of sexual abuse over nearly a decade.  ...