Jazz Performance Majors at the Boyer College of Music and Dance are receiving opportunities to expand their musical knowledge of Jazz both inside, and outside of the classroom. SOUTH, a jazz bar and kitchen on Broad and Spring Garden, is one of the many venues that allows any musician, including students, to sit in and play jazz music.
“The best part about going to sessions is that there’s always just a ton of people you get to meet,” stated Scott Edmunds, a current Jazz Piano major at Temple, “They’re all like super cool super helpful […] It just builds your vocabulary. The more people you get to hear, the more you get to hear them play.”
And while building vocabulary, musicians gain the opportunity to learn how to play with others on the dime that you may not have played with before.
Alec Charon, a Jazz Guitar major at Temple, mentioned that “One of the most important things about Jam sessions is just being part of like a musical conversation, and just getting to know the people who are working on the same level as you.”
“When you go out and start to play with people you don’t know, you build these skills that almost have not even anything to do with what you can do in a practice room,” said Chris Oatts, a Jazz Saxophone major at Temple, “as you learn how to play with each other, how to react off of each other.”
On top of gaining musical experience, students also receive the opportunity to play with other students from their major in a live setting. Jazz Trombone major William Saurman stated that “You get to play with different people, get a feel with how they play, and it’s just a great way of on the spot trying to come up with something and try to gel with them, and just try to make some great music.”
“I think it’s important for people to realize that outside of the bubble that they understand in college, there is a world in the community that they live in, particularly Philadelphia, where they’re going to make their living,” said Tim Brey, a former Temple student and current Jazz Piano teacher.
SOUTH opens up its doors to the public for a jazz jam session every Tuesday from 7 to 11 PM.