Acclaimed jazz artist Carl Saunders joins student ensembles, CR Jazz in April 19 program
“If you’ve not yet heard this master of the trumpet and flugelhorn, it’s time you did!”
That’s how one reviewer summed up the talents of Carl Saunders. The acclaimed jazz veteran will perform April 19 at Kirkwood Community College. Saunders will share the stage with the Kirkwood student jazz ensemble and CR Jazz Big Band in a 7:30 p.m. concert in Ballantyne Auditorium. The evening’s music is under the direction of Dr. Timothy Feldkamp.
Carl Saunders will also lead a jazz master class at Kirkwood from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon before the concert. He will demonstrate playing techniques and share stories of his decades in the jazz scene with area students and music fans in 375 Cedar Hall on the Kirkwood campus. This event is free and open to the public.
Saunders was literally “born into jazz” in Indiana in 1942, the nephew of noted trumpeter-balladeer Bobby Sherwood and son of Gail Saunders, a long-time vocalist for Sherwood, Stan Kenton and others. Saunders learned the trumpet early in life and discovered his style without taking any formal lessons. After graduating from high school he was hired on with the Stan Kenton Orchestra. The next two decades found him in many show bands, backing up such stars as Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra. Saunders also was a lead player with such diverse performers as Paul Anka, Robert Goulet, Maynard Ferguson and Benny Goodman.
Performance reviewers of Saunders have noted his “breathtaking long lines of delicate, swinging filigree….a set of stunning musical experience.” Another critic noted that his performances “brought audiences to their feet with solos, spectacular in their continuity, flow and ideas….Saunders may find himself one of the most talked about trumpeters today.”
Tickets to the April 19 Kirkwood Jazz Fest program are $8 for adults and $5 for seniors and students with current school ID. Kirkwood faculty, staff and students will be admitted free of charge. Tickets are available from the Kirkwood Student Life office in Iowa Hall, (319) 398-5578.