In honor of my husband’s birthday this week, I scheduled a family outing to the UCO Jazz Lab http://www.ucojazzlab.com/ last Saturday night. Introduced to Edmond’s annual jazz concert a few summers ago, we learned the pleasures of evenings under the stars listening to local musicians. Did I say local? Well, I didn’t mean that they were not professional – nothing could be further from the truth. The music is top notch and the jazz festival is family oriented so any music lover can find the type of music they enjoy.
Originally there were to be eleven of us in the jazz concert eating Hideaway Pizza http://www.hideawaypizza.com/ from next door but a few dropped out. We still had a great time and I think the birthday present was a hit. My husband has been a music lover since he was a member of the Enid High Big Blue Band in high school (a year or two ago). So I knew he would get to do something he loved for his birthday. The fact that you can eat the pizza while at the concert makes for a great evening and I didn’t have to cook!
Even though we were expecting jazz with horns, we were pleasantly surprised when the headliner for the evening was “Miss Brown to You” http://missbrowntoyou.com/. Mary Reynolds and Louise Goldberg were exceptional and extremely passionate musicians and their voices blended beautifully. I kept expecting Louise to jump up from her piano and dance. Many of their songs were originals, with classic New Orleans style jazz or Irving Berlin songs thrown in. You were guaranteed to know at least a few of them.
I didn’t realize how much I was in need of a night in a jazz club with a beer. I was so relaxed. Even though it was my husband’s birthday, I think I enjoyed it as much as he did and even our thirteen year old grandson had a good time. He kept saying he should have brought his clarinet since he plays a mean Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star! (hummm) At an early age he is already a jazz aficionado. It was an evening for all ages – those in the crowd, those on the stage, and even the kid at the table with the soda and pizza had a great time.
Next time you need an evening out, try the UCO Jazz Lab or the Edmond Jazz Festival http://www.edmondjazzandblues.org/ coming up in May. The Jazz Festival each May is connected with the local Jazz Lab and the university. The Jazz Lab is open each week with a different artist on the calendar, so go see if there is someone you would enjoy. You and your family will be glad you did.
Oklahoma has so much to offer.