Students enjoyed coffee and good music when Jones College brought back Java and Jazz, a campus event that brought a little joy despite the pandemic.
Java and Jazz is an event that brings together classical Jazz and coffee for a fun night out for students, friends or families. Pastries and coffee were provided for attendees to enjoy, courtesy of Jones College. The atmosphere was that of a classic jazz club, with band members in colorful fedoras and feathered boas.
JC Voices joined JC Jazz for this particular event and sang several classics like Puttin’ On the Ritz byIrving Berlinand Beyond the Sea byCharles Trenet. Dr. Susan Smith conducted the choir, who sang both acapella and accompanied by pianist Dr. Theresa Sanchez. Soloists were Bonner Welch and Stuyuncey Nobles.
JC Jazz, conducted by Dr. Ben Burge, brought some classics, including Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag by James Brown and Blackbird by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. There were many soloists in the performance and over 20 members in the Jazz Band.
Tyler Broadway, a Jones College sophomore and trumpet player, worked hard with his fellow band members to prepare for the performance.
“Music is so fun, especially Jazz. Every time I perform it, it makes me feel alive,” said Broadway.
Broadway is a music education major who played a few of the many beautiful solos performed that evening. He said that none of his solos from the performance were scripted.
“Every solo was impromptu. This experience has helped me to get better at improvising in music,” he said.
To finish out the night, the Jazz band and Jones College vocalist Clairrease McClendon performed the well-known piece Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Nickolas Ashford.
Java and Jazz is a Jones College tradition running for nearly 20 years. Despite the setbacks from the past year, the band and choir were pleased to help bring back some normalcy to the semester. Audience members were required to wear masks and socially distance during the performance to ensure the safety of attendees and the crew. If you missed the event, be sure to stop in next year for a little coffee and great music.
by Ashton May