Le jazz hot in Carson City
Appeal Staff Writer
A westside parking lot was transformed into a toe-tapping stomping ground Sunday – so much so that one could even hear performer Bob Greenwood’s sneakers as he tapped beneath his piano to “Jumping at the Woodside,” his homage to Jazz legend William “Count” Basie.
Greenwood was one of 22 musicians and groups to perform throughout the weekend at the second annual Basically Basie Jazz Festival.
The free extravaganza was hosted by the Brewery Arts Center and the Mile High Jazz Band Association. It was funded, in part, by grants from the Nevada Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Begun last year as a one-time gig to celebrate the 100th birthday of Basie, a leading jazz figure of the swing era, organizer David Bugli, a Mile High Jazz Band member and director of the Carson City Symphony, said it was impossible to stop at just one.
“People really liked it last year and were asking us to do it again,” he said.
With one block of Minnesota Street blocked off, about 1,500 people sauntered between two stages and visited a handful of vendors from Friday through Sunday at 9 p.m., said Brewery Arts Executive Director John Procaccini.
“The turnout was about 30 percent better than last year,” he said. “We’ll absolutely have this again.”
For Cathy Bober of Carson City, the weekend was a homecoming of sorts. After buying some country music CDs in an attempt to expand her music horizons, she finally realized she’s a jazz “standards” girl.
“I love this,” she said Sunday.
And the food wasn’t too bad, either, she said, giving the Cajun crab cake she’d just eaten from the Chef For Hire booth two thumbs up.
Bober had heard through the grapevine about the festival and stopped by Saturday. On Sunday, she found herself drawn back.
“We are so lucky to have the Brewery Arts Center,” the toe-tapping substitute teacher said.
n Contact reporter F.T. Norton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1213.