There was a resurrection of old time ‘boogie woogie’ and New Orleans jazz music at the Fox Theatre on the ninth day of Tucson’s Jazz Festival on January 22, 2016 and it was incredibly fun!
The festivities started with Mayor Jonathan Rothschild bestowing the “ Idea” award to Elliot Glicksmann, the President of the Jazz in January board. This was a surprise for the ‘idea’ man. Mr. Glickmann was one of the conceptualizers and fundraisers for the Tucson Jazz Festival.
The show started with the award winning blues, ragtime and ‘boogie woogie’ piano player, Arthur Migliazza, opening a solo set. He is not a stranger to Arizona having been inducted into the Arizona Blues Hall of Fame. He began playing piano at the age of nine. Arthur has been intensely studying all of the piano greats and he brought their styles of piano playing with him. The legacy of the great New Orleans musicians like Professor Longhair, Henry Butler, and Fats Domino live on through Arthur’s endeavors. He was eager to share his knowledge of the past piano legends through his playing and his words. His performance was flawless.
The Rad Trads kept the momentum going with their set of ‘radical’ traditional jazz music. This is a group of musician friends who were getting ready to graduate from college and they were searching for a way to continue their musical association beyond graduation. They formed in 2012 and their sources of inspiration are New Orleans brass funk, delta blues, and rock music. The hallmark of their live performances is joining the audience during their performance and making the fans apart of their improvisational music. This performance, however, left the band in the dark when they descended upon the audience. Aside from the lighting issue, the band delivered a stellar performance and everyone had a good time.
The band is comprised of Alden Harris McCoy on guitar and vocals, Patrick Sargent on tenor saxophone, John Fatum on Drums and vocals, Michael Harlen on electric bass and vocals, Samuel Crittenden on trombone and Michael Fatum on trumpet.
The set consisted of three songs from their EP, Self Help. The songs, “Moonshine,” “Check Cashing Day,” and “Port Authority” were written by the band members. They covered songs from “Will The Circle Be Unbroken” to Kelly Clarkson’s “Since You’ve Been Gone.” For a complete set list, check out the photo of the handwritten set list from the show in the photos accompanying this article.
The ninth day of the jazz festival was a reminder that there are only two more nights left of sensational jazz in Tucson. Tickets are still available for the Kermit Ruffins show at the Rialto Theatre on January 24, 2016. Click here for ticket information.