Island Jazz Quintet
Jazz, Swing, Big Band, Latin, Standards, Easy Listening
You're in the heart of downtown Vashon Island walking past the Stray Dog Cafe on the main drag. Just as the attractive aromas of garlic, coffee, and fresh pastas draw you in, so do the soulful sounds of Island Jazz Quintet performing there on the occasional Thursday evening. From Bossa Novas to American Jazz to smoky hints of cabaret, the music is original and seductive, presented with an emotive and engaging style.
All island residents, the musicians began meeting in the spring of 1999, evolving a sound at weekly rehearsals in a wooded studio on Vashon's south end. In time the group developed material for its first CD, recorded at Jack Straw Productions in Seattle. Island Jazz Quintet continues to perform at local Vashon haunts, and with the release of the CD is playing regularly in the greater Seattle area. Notable appearances this summer ('01) include concerts at Mercer Island's "Mostly Music in the Park" series, the Summerfest Performing Arts series in Long Beach, WA, and the opening of Seattle's newly remodeled Convention and Trade Center.
Reviewer Peter Ray, writing for The Ticket, calls the CD "tight, crisp, and spare, with a full sound and clear earshot at the talents of the individual performers." Of the track "One for My Baby" he writes, "One can actually feel the smokiness of the room, catch a whiff of the drinks from the bar, and feel the heat of the torch that Laird is carrying here."