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1  In-Class Critiques / Jazz Concert Critiques / Re: Small Jazz Ensemble Concert 4/20 on: April 22, 2010, 08:26:42 pm
Even though I loved the first jazz concert I went to, I really did not like this one. Maybe it is because the last concert did such a great job that basically I had much higher expectations for this jazz concert as well. The Jazz concert had two groups, one was the Studio Jazz Combo and the other one was the Community Jazz Ensemble. It was held at the McCarthy Auditorium in the Miami Dade Kendall Campus. The first group that played was the Studio Jazz Combo. I did not like there performance very much. You could see that they were students and not professionals, but I have to give them credit for trying. The first son was “Little Sunflower” was the drums start and then all the other instruments begin to combine themselves into the music. It was an OK start for the night, nothing too remarkable. I liked Yard bird suite the most, it was the best song that this group played all night because it was a very cheerful song. The sax had a very important performance which I liked very much. I really like the song A Night in Tunisia but I did not like their performance that much, even though they tried hard, they did not impress me that much. The trombone made a good start but after the rest began to play, they just lost it in my opinion. Povo was kind of nice because I liked the call and answer between the trombone and the sax, that was one of my favorite parts of the night. Scrapple from the Apple was average, but the ending was kind of surprising I did not expect it to be so abrupt.

The second part of the night was played by the other group called Community Jazz Ensemble. They looked a lot more professional than the first group. From this part on I enjoyed the night a little more than before. The first song that they played was called Moanin, where I think that the vocalist did a great job. I usually focus more on the instruments than on the vocals but this girl called Amanda Gonzalez did an excellent job singing. I also liked very much the song No more blues, because they were singing in Portuguese. I just found that very nice and different from everything I had heard before. And to give it something extra the director was playing the trumpet which I think he did a very good job at it. The Way You Look Tonight was also a song I enjoyed very much, again the vocalist Amanda Gonzalez did a great job. When Sunny Gets Blue was kind of sad at the beginning when the piano and guitar start playing, it was a bit melancholic but I still enjoyed it. Grand Slam was the last song that they played and it was a very good ending, it was a cheerful ending for the concert and even though I did not like it as much as the first one, I still enjoyed it.
 Cheesy
2  In-Class Critiques / Jazz Concert Critiques / Re: Cotton Club Review 2/25 on: April 22, 2010, 07:51:19 pm
I attended the Cotton Club concert. This was the first time I have ever attended a jazz concert and I really enjoyed it. In the Prelude I really enjoyed the trumpet, I’m not a great fan of jazz but luckily I was able to take a class to better appreciate what this music is all about, and for me the trumpet and sax are key elements in jazz, and all that was put in action in this song. I think that the Prelude gave a very good mood to the concert; it was a perfect start for a wonderful night. In the first song “I Don’t Mean A Thing”, the drums and bass where playing almost all the time keeping a really good pace with the singers. After that they played the song “Straighten UP and Fly High”, where the piano had a very important role which I liked very much because when I was young I used to play the piano so I felt much related. The sax also gave me a very good impression but the piano for me was the best. For some reason I enjoyed more the instrumental part than the vocal, I don’t mean that the vocals were bad; I just think that the instrument players did a fantastic job. “Unforgettable” was just that, unforgettable. The sax, trumpet and trombone were great. The sax had to be great because the director was playing it but the one I most liked was the trombone. I liked when the sax and the piano play together at the end of the song, I thought that that sound was really something to appreciate. “Too close For Comfort”, the piano, drums and bass start everything up before the wind instruments take over the show. I really enjoyed this song and I can say that I was one of my favorites of the night. After that they played “Jazz poetry”, that performance was something odd in the show. I had never seen that instrument in any jazz song that we have listened to, but still I enjoyed it very much. It was kind of a Mexican instrument because when I go to Mexico I see people in the street sometimes playing it, so I assume it is from there. The one I really didn’t like was “Fly Me to the Moon”, its not that I don’t like the song, in fact I love it, it’s just that I don’t think they where even close to what Sinatra did. Some songs are too big for anyone to play them and Fly me to the Moon is one of them.
Probably my favorite of the night was “Harlem Night Song”, like I said before I love the piano and because piano was the only instrument, you could really appreciate the sound.
“Fever” kind of reminded me what jazz is all about, and that is party. “Smile” was also one of my favorites; they played it during Michael Jackson’s funeral. It was very emotive and I think most of the people loved that they played it. Route 66 is a classic but I enjoyed the pianist because not only did he play but he was also singing, when I used to play I could’ve never been able to concentrate on doing both things at the same time. To wrap it all up, I think that the ending was great, everyone singing “It don’t mean a thing”. I don’t think they could’ve picked a better song to end the night. I really enjoyed the concert and I will probably attend to more even if the class has already ended.
 Grin
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