seal  Purdue News

October 10, 2003

Soloists abound in Purdue jazz bands' Just Friends concert

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Straight-ahead swing, the kind of classic jazz that's an old friend to many, fills the Friday, Oct. 17, Just Friends concert that kicks off Purdue University Bands' jazz season.

The Purdue Jazz Band and Lab Jazz Band will be featured in the 8 p.m. concert in Stewart Center's Loeb Playhouse. The show is free and open to the public.

"We'll run the gamut, from the older Ella Fitzgerald and Peggy Lee tunes, to Gordon Goodwin's 'High Maintenance' that was written in the style of modern swing bands," says director M.T. "Mo" Trout. In addition, the Lab Jazz Band will perform Bob Mintzer's "Computer," which is filled with intricate rhythmic patterns.

Several soloists in each band will perform segments that follow the concert's Just Friends theme.

"We will be featuring a number of students in extended solos – not your typical 16-bar solos – throughout the concert," Trout says. "That's because we've got a lot of good soloists and a lot of upperclassmen. We want to give them the opportunity to prepare something, stand up front and be featured."

Two tenor saxophonists to listen for in the Lab Jazz Band are Kevin Davidson, a senior from Munster, Ind., on "Manteca," and Matthew Iles, a freshman from Lafayette, Ind., on "When Bop Meets Swing."

Another tune on that set is "Pink Squirrel" by Shorty Rogers.

"Written in the West Coast 'very cool' style, it's harmonically adventurous with catchy melodies and a really odd title," Trout says. "I have no idea what it means."

Five upperclassmen in the Purdue Jazz Band will perform solos, highlighted by Lafayette, Ind., senior Sara Suppinger singing Peggy Lee's "That's My Style" and Ella Fitzgerald's "I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm."

"They're record copies, which means they're exactly the way they appeared on the records," Trout says.

Pianist Ryan Hicks, a senior from Fort Wayne, Ind., begins John Green's "Body and Soul" without accompaniment. "This arrangement by Bob Florence is one of the best big band arrangements I've heard. I like it a lot," Trout says.

"Zoot," named for the well-known 1950s tenor saxophone player Zoot Sims, features Bloomington, Ind., senior Cosmos Krejci on sax. Kristen Wilde, a junior trombonist from Carmel, Ind., gets the spotlight in "Over the Rainbow," and Alex Fenske, a sophomore from Richton Park, Ill., plays a flugelhorn solo in "Autumn Nocturne."

The jazz bands' next concert is Nov. 21 in Loeb Playhouse. For more information on jazz or other concerts sponsored by Purdue University Bands, call Kathy Matter at (765) 496-6785 or visit the Web.

Writer: Kathy Matter, (765) 496-6785,

Source: M.T. "Mo" Trout, (765) 494-9110,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: Media interested in interviews should contact Kathy Matter, Purdue Bands Public Relations (765) 496-6785.

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