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1970s Fredonia jazz alumni return for Homecoming
Thursday, July 07, 2016

As part of the 2016 Homecoming Celebration, the 1970s Fredonia Alumni Jazz Ensemble will return to campus Friday, Oct. 21 to present a free public concert at 8 p.m. in Rosch Recital Hall.

The concert will feature original compositions by members of the band and charts of bands from the 1970s that inspired the group to greatness as the Jazz Ensemble. The group will be joined by the 2016-2017 Fredonia Jazz Ensemble, led by Fredonia student Jesse Torres.

Members of the 1970s group are traveling to Fredonia for this special reunion event from as far as Florida, Kentucky and California. In past years, members have traveled from Arizona, Alaska and Germany. Making a special appearance from Los Angeles and Hollywood is trumpet player Dr. Howie Shear, Class of 1975. He is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music with a master’s degree in Jazz Studies and a doctoral degree from University of Southern California.

Dr. Shear toured with the Woody Herman Band as lead trumpet player and featured soloist in 1980. He has appeared with Chuck Mangione, Tony Bennett, George Benson, Mel Torme, the Temptations and the Spinners. He served as musical arranger and lead trumpet player for the Joan Rivers Late Night Show. Arranger and producer of various jazz albums, Shear currently has his own jazz quartet and also plays classical music with various brass quintets, orchestras and studios in Los Angeles and Hollywood, as well as teaching at three different colleges.

Returning to play with the group this year is pianist Tony Caramia, who teaches at the Eastman School of Music. Mr. Caramia will also be presenting a recital on Thursday, Oct. 20, at 8 p.m., in Diers Recital Hall.

Saxophonist Bob Shaut, Class of 1973, writes, "for jazz in the 1970 decade, fusion ruled the time." The concert will feature music by Weather Report, Chuck Mangione, Carole King, and Stevie Wonder. An arrangement of a tune by Woody Shaw will be featured, arranged by alumnus Onaje Allan Gumbs, who played with Woody Shaw a number of years.

The concert is coordinated by Dr. Linda Phillips of the Fredonia School of Music, Patricia Feraldi, director of Alumni Affairs, and 1970s FJE members Charlie LeCount and Craig Fattey.

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