Home Campus Music or pure magic: Jazz Combos amaze BYU-I students

Music or pure magic: Jazz Combos amaze BYU-I students

On Oct. 12, student jazz groups came together in the Eliza R. Snow Performing Arts Center to awe audiences with their musical talents.

“It was great,” said Parker Nelson, a senior majoring in interdisciplinary studies. “It was way better than listening to it in my car. The performers were really good, and it was really fun just to hear it. Everyone was just vibing.”

The two groups that performed each selected Horace Silver songs to play, including “Enchantment,” “I Want You” and “The Preacher.” In true jazz spirit, however, each group created its own original arrangements and mashups.

The crowd applauded enthusiastically as each musician took their turn in the spotlight, allowing their instrument to shine in their respective performances. All the instruments then came together again to create the spectacular sound that soared through the Snow Ensemble Hall.

“I love playing music,” said bass player Nathan Decker, a sophomore studying marketing. “Jazz combos is fun because it feels like you’re part of an intimate band. You get to bounce ideas off each other. You get to work with each other — practice Monday, Wednesday, Friday. It’s just fun. Jazz is a great style. It encourages expression and improvisation.”

The second group playing.
The second group playing.

Although many attending the show were part of BYU-Idaho’s music program, students didn’t have to be music majors to appreciate and participate in jazz combos.

“For me, all I wanted to do was play drums,” said drummer Cole Busacker, a sophomore studying construction management. “I tried to get into it my first year but couldn’t figure out how to really do that because you have to either pay $200 to go to lessons or take a jazz class, so I was like, why not? It was a good experience to learn how jazz songs are constructed.”

To listen to more jazz, students can check out future live streams of the event for free online or attend jam sessions held on Thursdays at the Manwaring Center’s Little Theater. Special guest Brad Good will be playing original music alongside the bands that played during the Jazz Combos on Nov. 16.

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