January of Jazz

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The month of January in 2019 proved memorable for the HHS jazz band, as two special visitors conducted clinics with the ensemble. On Jan. 16, renowned multi-reedist Jeff Lederer visited HHS during the school day. Representing LIU Post, where he heads up the jazz program, Lederer came with a jazz-fusion group—Post Modern—to perform for a broad cross-section of the student-musicians. He then stayed to work closely with the jazz band, covering everything from swing to collective improvisation.

On the evening of Jan. 30, rising saxophonist Adam Larson came in to work the group through some important topics. With band parents and families as an audience, Larson took the students through a wide variety of territories—instruments setups, warm-ups, improvisational basics, and the realities of life as a working musician.

Additionally, Larson sat in with the band, adding a jam session atmosphere to the visit.

“There’s no substitute for these types of experiences,” remarked Harborfields High School Jazz Band Director Dan Bilawsky. “Bringing in individuals of this caliber to work with the kids is absolutely priceless.”