The 2013-2014 season starts at 8 p.m. Sept. 20 for the Colorado Jazz Repertory Orchestra. The group was organized last season by saxophonist Art Bouton, a Lone Tree resident, to bring 16 top area jazz musicians to the then-new Lone Tree Arts Center. Enthusiastically received by area jazz fans in the 2012 season, the CJRO will appear four times this year.
“Everything Old is New Again” is the theme of the first concert, described at “big band funk, booty-shakin’ music,” featuring saxophonist Nelson Rangell. He will perform as part of the CJRO and then be featured with his own Nelson Rangell Quartet. The band will trace the origins of the music, beginning with Duke Ellington's “Rockin’ in Rhythm” and “Harlem Nocturne,” followed by sounds of the 1960s and 1970s and arriving at the smooth jazz pop of Rangell.
Rangell, who started playing in the Denver area in the 1980s, is internationally recognized. The Times of London wrote that he is “an artist of depth, a master of song and an improviser nonpareil … with extraordinary facility on a range of instruments ….”
He will play soprano, alto and tenor saxophone, flute and perhaps piccolo.
Talented band members, who perform throughout the metro area and nationwide, include on saxophone Rangell, Bouton, Tom Myer, Elijah Samuels and Wil Swindler. The trombone section consists of Darren Kramer, Rob Olds, Wade Sander and Lindsey Gardner. Trumpeters are Chris Walters, Gabe Mervin, Dawn Kramer and Dave Rajewski. The rhythm section is made up of Eric Gunnison on piano, Bijoux Barbosa on bass and Mike Marlier on drums.
• Oct. 28, 7:30 p.m.: “Swingin’ with Duke Ellington.”
• Jan. 10, 8 p.m.: “Tribute to Maynard Ferguson,” featuring Pete Olstad, an alumnus of the Ferguson band.
• May 12, 7:30 p.m.: Big Band Blues, with a guest vocalist.
Some of these musicians are academics like Bouton, who is a professor at the University of Denver’s Newman School, and other teach privately and/or freelance. Many are in other area performing groups as well — part of a rich local network of talented artists.
The Lone Tree Arts Center’s fine acoustics show off the individual and combined talents of these musical professionals especially well.
Tickets cost $20 (plus a $3 service charge). 720-509-1000, LoneTreeArtsCenter.org.