Students fill air with jazz, passion

Joel Ray/Senior photographer Sophomore Katelyn Henson plays the saxophone during Linfield’s Jazz Band concert.

Joel Ray/Senior photographer
Sophomore Katelyn Henson plays the saxophone during Linfield’s Jazz Band concert.

The Linfield College Music Department hosted its spring 2013 Jazz Night concert May 17 in Ice Auditorium. This concert was the final performance for Linfield’s Jazz Band, with the current senior band members. Each senior received an opportunity to perform a solo throughout the performance.

Senior Evan O’Kelly played guitar solos. Various forms of talent in the band were highlighted during the concert because players from every section of instrumentation were featured, O’Kelly said.

“This was a great way to wrap up my performing career at Linfield,” O’Kelly said, who began performing with the band as a sophomore. “I thought all of the seniors played well and ended on a high note.”

O’Kelly plays the guitar in the band. “I just love being able to hear something and then translate that to my instrument,” O’Kelly said.

At 12 years old, O’Kelly learned to play the guitar by listening to the music he liked. O’Kelly has also performed at Cat Cabs with fellow Jazz Band member, sophomore Christian Santangelo, and other musicians from Linfield.

Senior Lynette Cole, one of the trombone instrumentalists, considered Jazz Night a fantastic close to her last four years performing with the Linfield Jazz Band. Cole has been playing the trombone since she was in sixth grade. She has always had a strong love for the jazz genre.

“I always knew I’d play the trombone, as my older brother and dad played,” Cole said.

The Jazz Band performed a mixture of popular songs and music that students in the Linfield Music Department had written.

“Sao Paulo,” a well-known jazz tune from Brazil, was the second song played during the concert. The band also ended the performance with a Ray Charles hit song called “Hit the Road Jack.”  While the audience was leaving the auditorium, the band busted out in the tune of “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore.

“The concert went great, but my opinion is kind of biased,” said the wife of trumpet player Bryan Shirley. Shirley is a local McMinnville resident along with a few other community members who fill-in for missing instrumentalists during concerts.

This may have been the Linfield Jazz Band’s last performance with the seniors, but it was not all the seniors’ last concert. Some of the seniors had their Senior Recital on May 16 in Ice Auditorium.

Mariah Gonzales

Culture editor

Mariah Gonzales can be reached at