Classics, jazz rock fills Purdue Summer Band concert
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Family musical fare fills the Purdue Summer Band’s annual outdoor concert set for 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 14, at Slayter Center, located on the corner of Stadium and Martin Jischke Drive in West Lafayette.
Tunes by the American jazz rock band Steely Dan and a sampling of original 1950s jazz by the Dave Brubeck Quartet melds with folk melodies from England and Ireland in the concert which features an array of marches and light classics.
Boasting more than 80 members, the Purdue Summer Band is bigger in 2009 than it has been in recent years. It is a long-standing tradition that pulls together college students, Purdue faculty and staff members, high school and community musicians for an intensive summer band experience. The musicians rehearse twice a week for a month then present an outdoor concert.
Their musical look at Steely Dan pays tribute to a band that reached the peak of its popularity in the 1970s but has earned notoriety in the 21st century. It has released two albums since 2000 including the Grammy Award winning “Two Against Nature.” The band’s music is characterized by complex jazz-influenced structures and harmonies which blend elements of jazz, rock, funk, R&B and pop. Rolling Stone magazine called them “the perfect musical antiheroes for the Seventies.”
Besides “Steely Dan in Concert” and “Dave Brubeck: A Portrait in Time,” the concert also features “Irish Rhapsody” by Clare Grundman, “English Folk Song Suite” by Philip Sparke, “Fortress” by Frank Ticheli and a John Philip Sousa march “Fairest of the Fair” among other offerings.
The 2009 band is co-directed by Jay Gephart and Ishbah Cox, both members of the Purdue Bands & Orchestras faculty.
Admission to the hour-long concert is free, and those attending are encouraged to bring picnics as well as blankets and/or lawn chairs for lawn seating. It is sponsored by Purdue Bands & Orchestras.
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