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New Trier Jazz Festival Report

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Alex, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. My school Jazz band played at the New Trier Jazz Festival on Saturday (Feb 4). The NTJF is (I think) the biggest high school band festival in the region, and it was pretty cool. There were bands from all around, even a band from Winnipeg Canada!

    Overall I thought that the school bands were very talented, but I was dissapointed to hear so little latin or funk; there was so much swing. Now don't get me wrong, I like swing, but after hearing 5 hours straight of walking bass lines, uptempo drum parts with the exact same triplet ride beat, hi hats on 2 and 4, and predictable brass lead parts. I think I heard 2 latin songs, and 1 funk song all day.

    Another beef: the soundman in the auditorium had some problem with rhythm sections, because there was precisely 0 bass, guitar, piano, or accesory percussion in the mix. Even on rhythm section only segments of songs, these parts were barely audible. The drums were at a good volume, though.

    At noon the Goran Ivanovic Group played. They were absolutely amazing. They were like nothing I had ever heard before. They said that their music was "balkan". Regardless, it was awesome. Their guitarist had the fastest fingers I had ever seen, and their drummer was captivating. It was great music. Their CD was on sale in the lobby, and after their performance, 300 copies sold in 5 minutes.

    At 2:30 the directors from each school were assembled into a big band, and sight read 2 pieces. It was cool to see all the directors play, and funny to watch our band director, Mr. Waggoner, struggle with his 230 bpm walking line on bass.

    After that, there were section masterclasses with the members of the headlining band that night, Diva. After a short speech about being a rhythm section player, they did an impromptu jam for us. It was just a piano/bass/drums trio piece. It was almost completely improvised, and was basically a series of alternating solos. I was floored by their performance. Each person's solo was even more captivating than the next. I was dying to get some of their stuff on CD!

    After that, the US navy "Falconaires" played. I was fairly unimpressed with their performance, not because they were bad (they were obviously very talented), but all they played was straight swing, which I was completely sick of by then.

    After that, all the bands left for dinner. We drove to a Fuddrucker's about 40 minutes from New Trier. We left there at around 6:45, needing to get back to the school by 7:30 for the headlining night show. About 25 minutes down the road, someone says "Where's Peter?" :rollno: After retrieving him from Fuddrucker's, we made it to New Trier in time for the Diva show (New Trier's top band had played first). Diva's show was alright. Again, straight swing was kinda getting to me after an entire day of it, so I was fairly uninterested. Their solos were really good, though. +1 to the soprano saxist! she had 1337 h4x. For their last 2 songs, they played a funk song (only one all day!) which was awesome, and then they played a really long piece, with very long free time bass and drum solos. The bass solo defined sweetness, and the drum solo was good.....for the first 5 minutes. The drum solo was definitely too long and indulgent, but when your band leader is a drummer, what do you expect?

    Then we left for home, returning around midnight.

    btw were any other TBers there?
  2. No other Tbers were there?