Jazz band looks to regain footing during upcoming concert

Edward Mei and Charles Yu

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 The Palo Alto High School jazz band will perform for the first time with the Paly orchestra this year as part of the annual fall orchestra and jazz band concert at 7 p.m. today in the Haymarket Theatre.

According to jazz band member Rajiv Vasudevan, a senior, the jazz band will feature a lineup of songs by famous jazz musicians Gordon Goodwin, Miles Davis and Django Reinhardt.

Besides the music itself, Vasudevan believes that tonight’s concert will be a challenge for the band after losing many of their most talented players for various reasons.

“This year we lost a couple good saxophone players who graduated last year, such as Miles Kool, and our first trumpet player, junior Richard Cao, had to quit for personal reasons,” Vasudevan said.

The loss of those musicians is an obstacle that the band will have to overcome, especially this evening, he said.

“We’ve been told many times by Mr. Wilner that we have several excellent musicians in jazz band,” Vasuvedan said. “So I hope we can easily match or even surpass the expectations set by previous years. Thus, [it] is more of a challenge than anything.”

Former first trumpet player junior Richard Cao has faith in his former band members’ ability to adapt to the new changes this year and succeed.

“I think that they will do great,” Cao said. “The trumpet section and the saxophone sections are great this year, and I think that everyone will do just fine. Just because I left doesn’t mean that there won’t be good players that can cover my part in the future.”

In the same spirit, the current members of the jazz band have not lost morale and hope to play well at the concert.

“We are all really good friends in the band and my little brother is the drummer,” Vasudevan said. “I’m really excited to get to make good music with my friends and brother.”

The jazz band will be joined by the orchestra tonight at 7 p.m. in the Haymarket Theatre.