The soft sounds of jazz rocked dozens of locals who listened to the music under the stars last Saturday at Camp Caylor in Copperas Cove. Jazz band Acoustic Jazz Innovative and artist Killeen Jarin Cole, who goes by JC Stringz, entertained those who came out.
Cole attends Berklee College of Music in Boston and visits family in Killeen during breaks.
“I’m enjoying it there, but I’m happy to be home for the break, doing a few side gigs and doing what I love to do the most, which is playing the music and make people smile,” he said last Saturday.
Cole has been playing fiddle and guitar for local residents and events in and around central Texas for years.
When the Caylors contacted him to find out if he would like to perform at the event, they asked if he knew of any other jazz musicians who could perform. It was Cole who suggested the group Acoustic Jazz Innovative.
Three members of the jazz quintet performed in front of the audience. Justin Kirkxey played guitar, Deon Byrd played trombone and Alex Buss played bass. Two of the members – Nicholas Ktrujillo and Spencer Nesseridh – were unable to attend.
Members of the relatively new group mainly met at Temple College, and most of them live in Killeen or Temple.
Shannon Caylor, one of the owners of Camp Caylor, was thrilled with those who came.
“We’re really happy with the turnout for ‘Jazz Under the Stars’,” she said. “People seem to be having a great time enjoying the food, drink and music.”
Danniell Bullock first came to Camp Caylor after a friend suggested the jazz event after seeing it on Facebook. She’s been in the military for 15 years.
“I’m originally from Louisiana and was posted here at Fort Hood, and I loved the sound of this event, and when I got here the sun went down and it was still 94 degrees, but this place is awesome, the music is awesome,” Bullock said.
Also at the event were Frank Martinez and his wife, Deanna, who traveled from San Antonio to visit a friend in Copperas Cove. The Martinezes said they were trying to find something cool and fun to do on a Saturday night and saw the event on social media.
“We had a great time, the music is awesome, the drinks are awesome and we love Camp Caylor,” Frank Martinez said.
He and his wife danced while Cole performed.
While speaking to the crowd, Caylor expressed his gratitude to those who supported the establishment. Camp Caylor is for sale as she and her husband will be moving to Georgia to be close to their daughter who will go to school there after graduating from Lampasas High School.
“We are very grateful to the local residents for coming here to support our business, especially during the pandemic, which we have done very well,” Caylor said. “We will keep everyone updated on Camp Caylor and if and when there are new owners.”