The Puget Sound Jazz Band hosts a lively Valentine’s Day concert


Fingers snapped, toes tapped and hearts blazed with the magic of music this Valentine’s Day at the Puget Sound Jazz Orchestra concert featuring vocalist Dee Daniels. The crowd was alive in the Schneebeck Concert Hall that night as Daniels and the Puget Sound Jazz Orchestra wooed the crowd with their unique musical styles.

With an extensive and diverse resume, Dee Daniels has shared the stage with a number of symphony orchestras across the United States and Canada. According to her website, she has toured with the Noord Netherlands Symphony Orchestra, performed “Songs From Disney Movies” with the Munich Radio Orchestra, and recorded her CD “Wish Me Love” with the Metropole Orchestra of Holland. Daniels also graced the Broadway stage at the 2009 premiere of New York choreographer Twyla Tharp’s new musical “Come Fly Away.”

On Thursday, she joined the Puget Sound Jazz Orchestra, which senior band member Ian Crocker said had been eagerly preparing for the collaboration since last semester.

That night, however, all their hard work paid off and the result was an enchanting evening of music and laughter. With her effervescent personality, Daniels was quick to inject her endless energy into the room.

“My favorite part of the performance was just sitting and listening to Dee,” Crocker said. “I was seated directly behind her, playing rhythm guitar on most tracks, and completely got caught up in how she articulated her melodies, how far she could stretch before backtracking. “

But it wasn’t just Daniels’ impressive technique and four-octave range that captivated the crowd that night. With her wacky jokes and personal stories, Daniels addressed each audience member as if they were an old friend. For example, before performing her 1990 song “I Got This Bridge I Want You to Buy,” she coldly relayed the inspiration behind the song: her ex-husband’s shocking infidelity.

“One day, instead of turning left to go to work, he crossed the street to the neighbor and started examining the grass,” Daniels said with a smirk. “I guess he thought it was greener or something.”

Although there are many talented musicians in the world, it is quite rare to find a performer as committed as Daniels. This was perhaps the biggest surprise for the band playing with her that night.

“Dee’s on-stage presence is just astounding,” Crocker said. “We had all practiced music, of course, and we had all listened to his work online. But none of this gave us a picture of the communication she would have with the audience and with the band. It was just a blast there.

It takes a whole band to back up a performer as technically skilled as Daniels and of course the Puget Sound Jazz Orchestra was more than ready for the task. “We’ve heard from a bunch of different people telling us that this was the best UPS jazz concert they’ve seen,” Crocker said. “And after playing in this ensemble for all of my four years here, I think the band is as good as it’s ever been.”

At the start of her set, Daniels said her one goal for the evening was that “you’ll leave here tonight feeling inspired, uplifted and with a big smile on your face.” Daniels and the group have undoubtedly succeeded in their objective. Whether you’re spending the holidays with that special someone or just trying to get through the night without crying over a pint of Ben and Jerry’s, that night’s performance proved that sometimes all it takes is a little music. to spread lots of love.

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Henry R. Wright