Last year I wrote a post about Alyson’s end-of-year Jazz Under the Stars concert. It’s a yearly event that is a lot of fun because you get to see the students at their peak and raise some money for the arts.
But this year Jazz Under the Stars was a bit more hectic for the Rochlins, since we were in charge of the silent auction.
I say “we,” but all the credit goes to my Mom and Dad for picking up the project a week or two before the event to help a band program struggling with administrative issues. They rallied together 50 items comprised of even more bundled contributions and stayed up until 5:00 a.m. printing the sign-up sheets and programs.
All I did was help organize the goods and watch the auction tables that I helped set up and tear down.
Oh, and I did some social media stuff while I was at it:
Current estimates are that we made about $2,570 for the Band & Dance Guard, which is a fantastic achievement for how quickly the auction was pulled together.
Seriously, I’m beyond impressed with my parents. They’ll deserve every ounce of sleep they get after pushing so hard.
The students also made out well in the end with $45,000 granted by the Redondo Beach Educational Foundation and the Ahmanson Foundation.
The band director, Raymundo Vizcarra, obviously seemed happy.
But that’s just the money-side of the event. Naturally there was food: A mobile taco vendor, shaved ice and (my personal favorite) fried twist potatoes.
You’re not here for the food, though. That doesn’t work well over text.
You’re here for the music.
A number of different bands performed throughout the night. The Adams Middle School Band, the Redondo Union High School Jazz Bands (A + B) and combinations of the various bands with alumni.
The final song of the night, “Willowcrest,” was particularly special. It had a god damn bongo solo that actually rocked pretty hard.
But more importantly it featured a flute solo by my little sister.
It was a killer song… And it was very long. Easily six or seven minutes long as jazz tends to do.
I recorded the whole piece for you all to enjoy, including the multi-minute long introduction from Vizcarra and the band bowing at the end. Check it out if you want some smooth jams:
Just before that piece, I recorded the same band’s performance of “Act Your Age” from a totally different angle.
Decided I would try to shake things up with my cinematography.
I got pretty into it after my Dad asked me to be the point man running his Facebook livestream of the event for a while. It was a relatively new experience for me, and even though I think three people were watching at most it was a lot of fun.
Had to take the extra initiative and photograph myself recording the event, because that’s what any good media-focused journalist would do. Right?
Well maybe not, but I wanted to keep record of my own exploits either way.
I had a lot of fun taking in the music and putting my skills to work basically running social media — at least for my family.
Especially because doing so gave me the chance to nab some wonderful candids.