Magical notes feed the soul
Lu’s Cafe to begin hosting weekly jazz nights
Published: Friday, September 7, 2012
Updated: Friday, September 7, 2012 00:09
Jazz night at Lu’s Cafe on Thursday night was a magical affair. The small cafe was quickly filled to the brim with both music and people. The crowd filled the hallway as people craned to listen to the melodious music.
There were many musicians from UConn’s music program. Colin Walters was on alto saxophone, Nick Trautmann and Lexi Bodick played the bass, Steve Jack was on drums, Mike O’Callaghan played the trumpet, Mike Masters and Josh Luber were on trombone, Niall Reynolds was on tenor sax and Kim-am Do was on piano. Professor Early MacDonald, the director of jazz at UConn, also played the piano on a few numbers.
The first set had seven pieces. One was a Miles Davis piece that seemed like it was inviting people to dance. The trumpet solo was jiving, bursting out with a commanding presence. The alto saxophone solo showed a real chemistry between the saxophonist and the drummer.
The third song was a slow, calm piece that sounded similar to a waltz. The alto saxophone was very smooth and seemed to glide over the notes. The bass provided great backing.
In the fourth piece, the drummer surprised the audience by eschewing his drumsticks in favor of his hands to play his solo.
After this the concert was interrupted for a small reminder from saxophonist Colin Walters. Quoting a jazz drummer, he said, “A wise man said that applause was the food of entertainment, and the louder you applaud and the harder you applaud the more you will be entertained.”
With this statement, the audience was reminded that this wasn’t the conventional consumerist show. The audience was expected to join in and interact with the music. After this, the audience was more apt to clap and holler in the middle of a piece in a show of appreciation. When asked about this later, Walters said, “This whole initiative is about progressing the art form of jazz in America and being able to share what we love to do with everyone else. We get to perform and we get to practice, but this venue allows us to share our music in a more intimate and realistic setting.”
The setting was definitely intimate and the audience was soon introducing themselves and making friends.
Another great song was “A Night in Tunisia.” It started with a slightly troubled warbling that created a lot of tension. The piano and the drums jived to create an air of mystery. It evoked the feel of balmy summer nights spent on dubious but exhilarating streets.
The news about the event had reached students in different ways.
“I saw a friend’s Facebook status about Jazz Night and decided to stop by,” said Shervin Etemad. “Definitely worth it. This is awesome.”
“I used to work at Lu’s, so I found out about it from Terry, the wonderful manager,” said Karolina Sielewicz.
The musicians want to continue this weekly event, and to try and eventually bring in guest artists from New York. Jazz Night is free to the public and is held every Thursday night at Lu’s Cafe in the Human Development and Family Sciences building.