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Music adds to spice of life

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Summer of Jazz organizer Mary Noone expects emotions to be in motion at this year’s Wednesday night concerts.”They’re playing with more soul and more urgency, because they’re displaced. They’re all over the place,” said Noone, of the New Orleans musicians set to perform at the eight-week concert series. “They are so psyched to come to Glenwood. They all said, ‘Thank you for hiring us.’ They are so appreciative.”Noone and her husband, Bob, also an organizer of the series, traveled to the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in late April to recruit musicians from the Big Easy for Summer of Jazz. The series, in its 21st year, presents free concerts at 7 p.m. in Two Rivers Park every Wednesday, June 7 through July 26.”Each week of Summer of Jazz will be different,” Mary said. “Some shows will be more laid-back, and others will have more dancing. This illustrates the variety of New Orleans music.”Clarinetist Michael White opens the 21st annual Summer of Jazz with traditional jazz similar to the music of Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong. “Dr. Michael White’s the guy who played at Sayre Park during the Coal Seam Fire,” Mary said. “He’s pretty traditional. He plays clarinet and banjo.”

Performing the following week is seven-piece jazz group The Jordan Family. Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and Orleans Avenue play June 21, while the Jason Marsalis/Jonathan Batiste Trio performs June 28.Mardi Gras-style parade act The Wild Magnolias joins zydeco band Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience for a double bill July 5. The Irving Mayfield Quintet plays July 12, followed by ’30s-style swing band The Jazz Vipers on July 19. The Soul Rebels Brass Band wraps up the summer jazz series with a spirited finale July 26.Traveling to New Orleans to sign the Summer of Jazz musicians was a life-changing experience for the Noones. Mary said she’ll never miss a Jazz Fest again.”I was just appalled at the conditions, but I was really impressed by the optimism. On one hand you have all this great music, but then on the other, this incredible devastation,” Mary said. “Their resolve in wanting to rebuild their community is amazing. They see the positive in the negative.”Mary said the city’s distinctive culture is what has helped the people of New Orleans remain optimistic.”It’s the food and music that’s going to help them,” she said. “If any city could do it, it’s New Orleans. It’s going to be a long haul, but they can do it.”To read band bios, hear music, or obtain sponsorship information, visit http://www.summerofjazz.com.

Contact April E. Clark: 945-8515, ext. 518aclark@postindependent.com



June 7: Dr. Michael White June 14: The Jordan Family June 21: Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and Orleans Avenue June 28: Jason Marsalis/Jonathan Batiste Trio July 5: Wild Magnolias followed by Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience July 12: Irving Mayfield Quintet July 19: The Jazz Vipers July 26: Soul Rebels Brass Band


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