By Emily Pizza, Opinions Editor
After only seven weeks of preparation, the Jazz Band played a concert in tribute to Freddie Hubbard last Saturday at 8pm in Dalton Theatre, celebrating his 75th birthday. The band played an amazing concert, even with a band of almost all new members.
Freddie Hubbard is known as one of the most inventive post-bop artists of his time, and the Jazz Band clearly showed that in their renditions of his songs.
Their first song, ‘A Nasty Bit of Blues’ featured soloist Jon Husar ‘14, whose trombone solos are always a treat to listen to. His skill on the trombone, partnered with his clear understanding of the music, fueled some amazing riffs.
Their next song, ‘Ready Freddy,’ had a pink-panther feel of slinking around mysteriously. Tenor saxophone player Riley Lundquist ’16 created some sweet phrasing with his expertly played pauses in between riffs.
Following Lundquist was new guitarist Ken Tsuchiya ‘16, whose musical abilities reveal nothing about his short time with the Jazz Band. His quick hands and perfect pitch proved that he was a natural with the instrument.
Piece number three is one of my personal favorites, ‘Little Sunflower.’ The band started with such intensity that the sudden drop in loudness catches me off guard, a very strong move for the conductor to make, and it was perfectly executed by the performers.
New saxophone player Andy Murfield ‘15, who currently attends Western Michigan University, was an absolute pleasure to listen to. His skill on the instrument allowed him to play with such speed that often times I was surprised he found a second to catch his breath. You know that a solo’s great when it looks like the horn player is going to pass out.
Following that song was ‘Povo.’ It was funkier than their previous songs and provided a nice transition into Hubbard’s post-bop expertise. Trumpet Player Kieren Williams ‘16 always provides a solid performance on his instrument, and this concert was no different. His notes were on-pitch and his riffs kept the audience interested.
Piano player Andrew Galimberti ’14 shows off his talent in this piece, his ominous solo in perfect harmony with the rest of the group. His talent and decision to try something different than everyone else was definitely rewarded in the audience’s cheers. I look forward to hearing him in other performances.
‘Red Clay’ was a piece that featured drummer Chris Monsour ‘16, whose abilities were definitely recognized in his solos tonight. His speed and rhythm were impeccable, and his skills are nothing short of phenomenal. As a returning member of the band, Monsour’s musical talents continue to grace the stage during quarterly concerts.
The last song, I regret, I do not have many comments on. The invitation to dance was too tempting and I left my pen and paper behind as I grooved alongside my seat neighbors, just enjoying the truly amazing music.