Big band keeping jazz spirit alive

July 15, 2009 2:02:56 PM PDT
There is a big band in Chicago that's making history along with its years of making music. The Chicago Jazz Orchestra is the longest continuous local big jazz band in the city. Its members have been making music in Chicago for more than 30 years.

The big band era is enshrined in history, but the spirit of that period lives on in Jeff Lindberg's Chicago Jazz Orchestra. Now, after more than 30 years, the band plays on.

"This band really started out as a rehearsal band on the streets of Chicago. We sort of pulled ourselves up by our boot straps and we started playing at some major festivals," said Jeff Lindberg, band music director.

A professor of music at the College of Wooster, in Wooster, Ohio, Lindberg travels 380 miles each week to lead the musicians on Mondays at Andy's.

Several members of the orchestra who played with Count Basie are reminded of that experience.

"The enthusiasm, the precision that this band achieves and the camaraderie, all of that is reminiscent of my time with the Basie band, so that's what brings the joy out of this experience every Monday night," said T.S Galloway, former Basie band member.

"I was one of the original members of the band back when they started and I enjoy it...These are a bunch of good guys. I truly enjoy it," said Eric Schneider, former Basie band member.

"It's part of my heart and soul, and so I've got to keep it going," said Lindberg.

Members of Jeff Lindberg's Chicago Jazz Orchestra, some musicians you should know. And to learn more about the band log on to www.chicagojazzorchestra.com.


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