Jim Cullum Jazz Band to perform at Van Dyck
SCHENECTADY The Jim Cullum Jazz Band featuring clarinetist Allen Vache will perform at The Van Dyck Restaurant, 237 Union St., at 7 and 9:30 p.m. on Friday.
The band has appeared in such major venues as Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center and stars in its own public radio series, “Riverwalk Jazz,” which is heard on more than 150 Public Radio stations and on the Internet.
The Jim Cullum Jazz Band plays jazz in the classic manner, in the style of small, hot ensembles prior to World War II. The band’s repertoire covers a lot of ground — from 19th century cakewalks to the small prewar Benny Goodman ensembles.
The core of the band’s music consists of the sounds of Jelly Roll Morton, Original Dixieland Jazz Band, New Orleans Rhythm Kings, King Oliver Creole Jazz Band, Louis Armstrong and Sidney Bechet, as well as a heavy emphasis on Bix Beiderbecke and Hoagy Carmichael.
In keeping with the band’s historical point of view, period instruments and performance practices are often used. Each member of the band is a specialist in historically informed jazz styles.
Leader Jim Cullum plays a cornet (instead of the trumpet or flugelhorn used in modern jazz), which was the instrument preferred by early jazz masters. Howard Elkins plays a 1920s-vintage Epiphone archtop 4-string tenor guitar and a 1935 Gibson tenor banjo. Don Mopsick plays an old German double bass set up with gut strings and high action in the manner of the preamplified era.
Mike Waskiewicz uses drumming techniques and equipment more commonly found in the earlier drumming styles of Zutty Singleton, Ray Bauduc and Baby Dodds.
From 1993-2005, the Jim Cullum Jazz Band was on the faculty of the Stanford Summer Jazz Workshop.
In April 2007, the band completed a tour of Russia that took them from Moscow to eastern Siberia and back west to the Baltic Sea. They played nine concerts in 17 days and covered seven time zones.
Tickets for Friday’s shows are $22 in advance, $26 at the door. They are available at 348-7999 and at www.vandycklounge.com.