New Year, New Jazz


Excitement lingers in the GV band department; the interest in music grows with every group of incoming freshmen. Jazz band is a section that has grown in size, allowing for two full bands to perform. This year, new members as well as old aspire to experience the opportunities and obstacles that come with every troubling rhythm. The conductors, Hector Juarez and Roger Brooks, are working hard to bring together each new and returning musician to prepare for the upcoming performances and concerts.
Brooks explains that, “The two bands are separated by experience and playing ability. After an audition process, I divided the students into Jazz Band One and Jazz Band Two. Jazz Band One performs more difficult songs and has more improvisation throughout the ensemble. Jazz Band Two is a training band to introduce students to jazz and prepare them to hopefully move up to Jazz Band One someday.”
Regarding Jazz One, Roger Brooks stated, “This is the first year we’ve had two full bands at the beginning of the year, so that’s fantastic. The numbers are up, the enrollment is up, the interest in Jazz is up, so I’m very excited about that. Jazz One is looking really, really good, we have a lot of good players [and] a lot of returning players from last year. And Jazz Two has a lot of new players which is really exciting.” Jazz One has five saxophones, four trombones, four trumpets, bass, drums, piano, and guitar. Remarking on the purpose of specific events, Brooks clarifies, “The performances are just to showcase the bands and show our family and friends… what we’ve been up to.”
Jazz Two includes five saxophones, four trombones, five trumpets, flute, bass, drums, vibes, and piano. Commenting on Jazz Two’s progress, Hector Juarez explained, “The band has been doing really well… [they] are actually surpassing my expectations right now. The band is young, but they are putting a lot of hard work in; you can see the vast improvement [from] week to week as we progress through the [semester].”