2009-2010 News

McBride '59 Commisioned Composer and Piece Announced

Jazz @ Amherst is proud to announce Earl MacDonald of the University of Connecticut as the 2010 Robin McBride Commissioned Composer.  The ACJE will present the world-premiere of his piece, "Smoke and Mirrors", on May 3, 2010 in Buckley Recital Hall.  Please also check out the recording of last year's McBride Commission, "Into the Light" by L. Frank Newton, on the audio samples page.

Jazz Action-End of Semester!

Join us for 4 concerts in 5 days.  Jazz Combos "group of four", "beestring+" and "floorless tower" begin on Sunday at 4pm in room 3 of arms.  The jazz ensemble is featured on Monday, may 3 in their 8pm concert in Buckley recital hall.  two more combos perform in the Friedmann room at 7:30 on may 5-"two left beat" and "Andy Warhol project".  finally, "travel by wire" will perform in room 3 of arms at 6:30pm on may 6.  Enjoy!

Five College Jazz Festival

Tremendous thank-yous go out to all who helped make this past weekend's 5 College Jazz Festival a great success.  We heard great sets from over 20 performance groups from Amherst, Mt. Holyoke, Smith, Hampshire, and UMass Jazz programs over two days.  Professional recordings are currently in production, and will be available shortly.  If you are interested in purchasing a copy, please contact Bruce Diehl (x8308; bpdiehl@amherst.edu).

Jazz @ Schwemm's 

Schwemm's Coffee House (in Keefe Campus Center) will once again host jazz performances on Tuesdays throughout March.  Each week will feature an AC Jazz Combo as well as a guest group.  March 23 will feature the Jazz Fusion Duo (featuring adjunct guitar instructor Joe Belmont) joined by the student combo Travel by Wire.  All performances are at 9pm and continue through the 10:30 hour.  Live music is best, and with good food and company, this scene can't be topped!  Read about it in the:  Amherst Student

Two Days, 5 Colleges, Endless Jazz!
Amherst College and 5 Colleges, Inc. are proud to present the 2010 5 College Jazz Festival!  The Festival will once again be hosted in the Friedman Room in Keefe Campus Center, smack dab in the center of the Amherst campus.  For the first time ever, it will be a two-day affair, occurring on Friday, March 26 and Saturday, March 27 (immediately following spring break).  Friday's program begins at 7 and will conclude with a jam session at 10, and Saturday's program begins at 1 and will wrap up at 4.  Admission is FREE, and you are welcome to come and go as you please throughout the weekend.  Visiting artists should click here for more information regarding the event.

Sam Friend Thesis Performance!

Thanks to ALL who participated in Sam Friend '10's Composition Thesis performance, "The One of Us".  Buckley was packed and filled with energy, and the ACJE, the Bluesox, and Route 9 did a fantastic job with the music.  Recordings of the show will be posted shortly.  Congratulations to Sam for creating such a great show...we look forward to encore performances at the Five College Jazz Festival and the End-of-Semester concert.

We're back in the saddle again!  Rehearsals started on Monday, 1/25, and we took a brief break to enjoy the work of the students on stage for the Sweeney Todd production.  Congrats to all who are making such a successful effort in that production!  Looking forward to a great semester of music!
We look forward to upcoming concerts in December-it's a busy musical month for all our performance areas.  On the calendar for Jazz performances, we find the following:  Dec. 11-ACJE in Buckley at 8pm; Dec. 13-Combo Concert in Room 3 at 2:30pm; Dec. 14-Combo Concert in Friedmann Room at 7pm; Dec. 15-Combo Concert in Friedmann Room at 7:30pm.  All concerts are free and the public is welcome!
Faultlines to feature Tyshawn Sorey Thursday, Nov. 19, 2pm in Room 7 of Arms Music Center.  Free Performance Workshop.

Family Weekend Jazz Events: 11/6

Join us in Buckley this Family Weekend!  The Jazz Ensemble will perform with special guest and Jazz @ Amherst professor Jason Robinson (saxophone).  This event is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 6 at 8:30pm.

Homecoming '09!

Thanks to all the students, faculty, alumni, and friends who helped support our program this past weekend!  All 6 AC Jazz Combos performed in the Coolidge Cage following a thrilling Amherst Football victory, and the ACJE performed later in the evening in Buckley Recital Hall.  The ACJE was joined on stage by guest musicians Darryl Harper '90 (clarinet) and Earl MacDonald (piano), who performed two original numbers as well.


Jazz@Schwemm's is On!

Join Gary Smulyan and his quartet plus student combo "Travel by Wire" on Tuesday, Oct. 6 at Schwemm's Coffee House for the first of 4 consecutive Tuesday evening performances.  It's a free concert starting at 9pm and featuring a professional group paired with a student combo.  The next evenings look like this:  10/13 Eclectic Jazz Quartet and "Group of Four"; Oct. 20 Doug Abrams Trio plus two combos; and 10/27 Flava'Evolution and student combo "Vincent van Groove".

Homecoming and Family Weekend Jazz Events

Join the Amherst Combos in performance at the after-game festivities on Saturday Oct. 24.  Alums are invited to bring their instruments to sit in!  The Jazz Ensemble will perform at 9:30pm that evening in Buckley with special guest Darryl Harper '91, Clarinet.
For Family Weekend, the Jazz Ensemble will perform in Buckley with special guest Jason Robinson, Saxophone.  This event is scheduled on Friday, Nov. 6 at 8:30pm.

Faultline Events: 9/24 and 9/26

Ned Rothenberg (reeds) and Evan Parker (drums) come to Arms Music Building's Room 7 at 2 pm this Thursday for a unique workshop as part of the Faultlines series.  The duo will also play a concert at the UMass Fine Arts Center at 8 pm.  Then on Saturday, join us at the Mead Art Museum (behind James and Stearns dormitories) for a solo concert by Peter Evans (trumpet).  The concert starts at 8 pm and all are welcome.

...And We're Off Running!

Thanks to everyone who took time out of watching the Pats home opener to attend our start-up meeting this past Monday.  The ACJE will rehearse from here on out at its regular time slot, while Combos will see their first rehearsals begin within the next week or so.  Rosters and rehearsal times for both the JE and the six AC Combos will be posted shortly.  Congratulations and welcome to Jazz@Amherst!

9/6/09: Jazz Jam Session!

Come down to Arms Music Center's room 7 this Sunday at 9:30 pm for some casual jazz jamming and free food!  All musicians of all skill levels are welcome to come and participate or spectate, and no jazz background is required.  Come to meet the members of the Jazz @mherst community and to learn of the exciting things happening in jazz this semester.  We can't wait to see you there!

9/6-9/10/09: Auditions!

Please head down to Arms sometime in the next few days to sign up for a ten-minute audition time slot for the Big Band and Combos.  Remember that auditions are meant for ALL students, including returning Jazz @mherst musicians.  The 2009 auditions chart can be found under the link "Audition Materials 2009-2010" on your sidebar.  Sign up outside of Bruce Diehl's office (216).  Best of luck and happy practicing!