Jazz concert had great range

Jazz singers and Big Band I started their December concert on Dec. 4 at 7:30 p.m. Solos introduced the singers, and Pam Prescott, with a voice fit for radio, began with “They Can’t Take That Away From Me.”

Jevan Bremby came next with “One for My Baby” in a solid straightforward sound. Asura Oulds-Jones got backup singers for his bold version of “Valerie” and everyone had energy on stage. Katie Creed’s sang a sensual “Body and Soul.” Sophia Gilstrap concluded the vocalist solos with an ethereal “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” that was as comfortable and cozy as grandma’s cookies.

Then the jazz vocal group came together for a Gershwin medley and a fairly pretty but gloomy “Come Sunday” by Duke Ellington. Then to send away the singers and introduce the band, “Straighten up and Fly Right” showcased another fabulous Bobby Kitchen solo.

The TU Big Band I took over the second half of the concert with Sarah Maud.

There were some new songs and some reused from the last concert.

Thankfully the ones they chose to redo were just as great the second time around.

Trombonists TJ Smith and Greg Fallis showed off some solos in the classic and fun “Can’t Buy Me Love.”

ACAC concert lost in the rush

The reenergized Association of Music Students hosted the first Brown Bag Concert at ACAC on Wednesday, Nov. 19 during lunch hours. Musicians, mostly music majors, performed classical and a few Christmas pieces for the crowds to promote musical experiences.

ACAC was a difficult venue to perform in, with echoing walls and lots of talking and eating going on, but the musicians handled it well.

The main enemy of the performers was volume. Amps and microphones weren’t allowed, and as a result much of the beautiful music was swallowed up in chit chat. To make matters worse, the performers were forced into a small cove in the building as to not obstruct lunch traffic.

To counteract the natural acoustics of the building, the musicians chose exciting and vigorous pieces that would stand out, and some students performed duets to be even louder. The pianists, namely Drew Crane, Abigail Gschwend, Benjamin Krumwiede and Hayden Iskander, as well as vocalists Morgen Culler and Carter Jameson, were most successful at projecting their sound the farthest. When their music broke through the excess sound, students clapped enthusiastically.

Students hungry for the new Star Ginger restaurant were serenaded the best, while students in line for Chick-fil-A and Benvenuto’s didn’t notice the performances half the time as they were farthest from the music.

Although a lot of the performances were spent leaning over in my chair to hear better, there wasn’t one wrongly placed note and the audience showed their appreciation when they could hear it.