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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Performance groups jazz up Crowder Hall

    School of Music. The UA Jazz Ensemble, led by professor Jeff Haskell, will be one of many groups performing during the annual Arizona Jazz Week. The week is in its 29th year and promises that the musicians will not just pose with their instruments - they will play them too.
    School of Music. The UA Jazz Ensemble, led by professor Jeff Haskell, will be one of many groups performing during the annual Arizona Jazz Week. The week is in its 29th year and promises that the musicians will not just pose with their instruments – they will play them too.

    Polish your brass and tune up your piano because, for the twenty-ninth year, the Annual Arizona Jazz Week is about to start.

    With a performance every day from Sunday to next Thursday, Jazz Week offers Tucson a variety of talented local musicians and out of state guests. All concerts are at Crowder Hall, located in the School of Music building, and most are completely free of charge.

    Professor Jeff Haskell has organized the Arizona Jazz Week every year. He is not only director of Jazz Week, but also heads the University of Arizona jazz studies department, directs the UA Jazz Ensemble and plays in the Faculty Jazz band.

    His professional life and recreational time are linked by a love of jazz nurtured from a young age. Haskell said his father was the one who inspired him to start playing jazz. “”He’d come home and instead of throwing a ball we’d play four hands on one piano,”” he said.

    As director of Jazz Week for 29 years, Haskell has seen the progression of the jazz program. One of the big differences between then and now is now there are more places in Tucson where one can go and hear jazz.

    Haskell said that while Jazz Week “”no longer fulfills the

    Miller has completed over 400 recordings as a pianist since his arrival on the jazz scene in the 1970s. He is known for the personality of his music, which has hints of the blues and gospel music of his youth in Mississippi.

    need like it once did, (it is) still doing a service to the university community,”” by keeping the community up to date and making jazz music more accessible.

    Haskell said the Annual Arizona Jazz Week has “”roared along”” since its creation, becoming an event “”certain members of the city wait for each year.”” Part of the week’s success is that it offers a variety of styles and types of performances throughout the week, with something to fit every taste in jazz.

    Jazz Week kicks off with a performance by Mulgrew Miller at noon Sunday. Miller has completed over 400 recordings as a pianist since his arrival on the jazz scene in the 1970s. He is known for the personality of his music, which has hints of the blues and gospel music of his youth in Mississippi.

    Later on Sunday night, at 7:30, will be a performance of Vocal Jazz, featuring Vocal Ease and the UA Hepcats. Playing more upbeat music, including numbers from the ’90s to today, Vocal Jazz is not to be missed by the younger generation.

    Faculty Jazz plays Monday at 7.30 p.m. Come along and see if you recognize any of your professors among the band, which features Jeff Haskell on piano, Robin Horn on the drums, Martin Patfield on the trumpet, Jay Rees on the bass and Kelland Thomas on the saxophone.

    Tuesday’s performance at 7:30 p.m. is by the TRADOC Jazz Sextet. This group of active-duty Army musicians has played jazz around the world and now bring its American small-group spirit to Tucson. Support the troops and hear a wide range of jazz music played by a band famous for its solos and cohesive rhythm.

    At 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, the UA Jazz Ensemble gives you the chance to find out what a flugelhorn is, and what beautiful music artist Dmitri Matheny can produce with one. Tickets are $9 for the general public and $5 for students.

    Jazz Week will wrap up with a performance by UA Jazz Band, directed by Patfield, at 7:30 p.m. March 8. With a lineup like this, make sure you don’t miss the program that makes Tucson the envy of the jazz world for this week only.

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