Salmon Arm Jazz Club season kicks off

Barb Brouwer/Contributor

“After you’ve done all the work and prepped as much as you can, never mind, might as well hang out and have a good time,” said the late clarinetist Benny Goodman, who led one of the most popular swing bands in the States. States between 1936 and the mid-1940s.

It’s a quote that could well be attributed to the Salmon Arm Jazz Club, whose members practice often, play happily together and will open their new season with a tribute to Goodman.

Talented clarinetist Sandy Cameron says he worked with three other members of a “good little quartet” to pay tribute to Goodman, including Dan Smith on rhythm guitar, bassist Jake McIntyre Paul and Brian Pratt-Johnson on drums .

Cameron has long admired Goodman, sharing memories of his father taking him to see the artist at the old Georgia Auditorium in Vancouver in the 1950s.

“It was my father’s influence, he wanted me to be a clarinetist,” he says. “I had one when I was nine or 10 and he wanted me to be a jazz musician.”

Cameron describes Goodman as a master clarinetist, capable of playing the music of serious classical composers in an orchestral setting.

“On top of that he had a wonderful group of musicians and had a popular trio, added Lionel Hampton to form another wonderful group, and he had a swing band that earned him the title of King of Swing,” says Cameron.

The second half of the September 15 season opener will be a mixed bag of music by the quartet members and others, hopefully with a vocalist or two.

“I want to try playing my newly acquired baritone saxophone,” says an enthusiastic Cameron, looking forward to another season of great jazz, with the many loyal fans in attendance.

Concerts are held the second and fourth Thursdays of the month and begin at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and Cameron has reason to believe that coffee, tea and sweets will be available at intermission.

Admission is by donation, with funds raised going towards any new equipment that may be needed and to pay for visiting musicians, who travel from out of town.

Jordan Dick is handling the bookings and Cameron is very happy to have two talented musicians moving into the interior – Campbell Ryga, an alto and soprano saxophonist will live in Kamloops and another highly sought-after Vancouver saxophonist, Cliff Startup, will make Vernon’s House.
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Ada J. Kenney