Cameron University Jazz Festival offers free concert featuring guest artists and CU students

The Cameron University Department of Music will present the 2014 Jazz Festival featuring jazz vocalist Rosanna Eckert; saxophonist, clarinetist, and trumpeter Chris McGuire; and John Simon on drums on Thursday, February 27. The concert starts at 7:30 p.m. in the Cameron University Theatre and is made possible by a grant from Cameron University Lectures and Concerts. The concert is open to the public at no charge.

Eckert, Simon, and McGuire will perform with both the Cameron University Jazz Ensemble and the Cameron University/Lawton Community Jazz Ensemble, both under the direction of Justin Pierce. The Cameron University Jazz Ensemble will perform the Duke Ellington pop/jazz standard “I Got It Bad and That Ain’t Good” featuring Eckert, as well as Benny Goodman’s “Sing, Sing, Sing” featuring McGuire and Simon as well as current Cameron drum set performer Kendall Jones.

In addition, the Cameron University Centennial Singers, conducted by Doris Lambert, will make a guest appearance, performing three of Eckert’s vocal jazz arrangements including “Fly Me to the Moon,” “Telephone Song,” and “How Deep is the Ocean.”

The Cameron University/Lawton Community Jazz Ensemble will perform Sammy Nestico’s “Alright, Okay, You Win,” Kris Berg’s arrangement of Pee Wee Ellis’ “The Chicken,” and the vocal jazz favorite “The Lady is a Tramp.”

Eckert is an internationally recognized vocalist, songwriter and arranger. She has released four solo CDs and teaches vocal jazz at the University of North Texas. She has performed on tour with the Grammy Award-winning vocal quartet New York Voices and with jazz greats such as Bobby McFerrin, Lyle Mays, Kenny Wheeler, Christian McBride, and George Duke. 

McGuire is a popular soloist, appearing with the Duke Ellington Orchestra and the Official Texas Jazz Orchestra, among others. He is an adjunct professor of jazz studies at the University of North Texas and the University of Texas at Arlington. McGuire can be heard on recordings by the UNT One O’Clock Lab Band, Rosana Eckert and Dave Zoller.

A 1990 Cameron alumnus, Simon is music director and percussionist with the Highland Park Methodist Church Contemporary Service (Cornerstone) and is owner and president of JAS Entities Solutions LLC, a digital media solutions company. He has performed with the Gainesville (Texas) Big Band, Rebel Alliance Big Band, Lawton Philharmonic Orchestra, the Robby Ledoux Band, Joe McBride, Tom Braxton, Stephanie Mills, Della Reese, Road Crew, Inside Out, Dallas Brass, Electric and the UNT 3 O’Clock Lab Band. As a Cameron student, Simon was a percussion section leader of the Cameron University Marching Band, Concert Band and featured drum set performer with the Cameron University Jazz Ensemble. He was also featured numerous times as a percussion soloist with the Cameron University Percussion Ensemble.

For more information, contact the Cameron University Department of Music at 580-581-2440.


February 13, 2014