Jazz Jam entertains listeners, invites all musicians


Joshua Hegg, Ethan Swet, and Madison Carlisle DeSantis preform original pieces at the 3rd Monday Jazz Jam at Naked Lounge, September 17 2018. Photo credit: Tara Killoran

It was a night of jazz-filled goodness as Naked Lounge hosted the first anniversary of its 3rd Monday Jazz Jam. Locals enjoyed original music and popular covers as a variety of artists got to perform.

The event was put on by the non-profit arts organization Uncle Dad’s Art Collective, which aims to create a culture of music, theater, dance and other performing arts in Chico. The Jazz Jam is a recurring event that takes place every month.

Over the last year, different people have curated the event. Uncle Dad’s Art Collective often gets a group of musicians together to perform either covers or tributes to a certain artist, but all of the artists have original material.

Jazz Night Small
Joshua Hegg plays the piano while Ethan Swet plays the bass guitar. They both preformed individual pieces they wrote. Photo credit: Tara Killoran

The event started off with a performance by the house band, The Josh Hegg Trio, showcasing original compositions as well as a jazz rendition of Katy Perry’s popular song, “Roar.”

“Josh printed out charts from different peoples’ songs,” said Ethan Swett, one of the performers that kicked off the night. “Roxanne Winslow, Michael Downs, Josh, myself, it’s sort of nepotism as we’re sort of celebrating ourselves this year.”

The type of jazz played had a very McCoy Tyner – Wes Montgomery vibe to it, Swett said.

“Jazz is an approach to music theory that is not classical… it’s not necessarily the antithesis of classical, but a uniquely American way of approaching music,” said Swett. “Some of my favorites are McCoy Tyner, Bill Evans and Wes Montgomery.”

The Jazz Jam was an open mic show, so anyone with an instrument could go up and strum, beat a drum or try the piano.

“Anyone can come up and play,” said Swett. “Even if you don’t know anything about music you could just go up and do random stuff on the piano, you’re welcome to do so. ”

“I don’t know how well it will be received, though.”

The Naked Lounge was filled with spectators who had a common passion for jazz music.

“I absolutely love jazz music,” said Loreta Williams, who happened to stumble upon the Jazz Jam – “I was just walking by and heard the music from outside, so I thought I should come right in and hear some jazz,” said Williams.

“Its a type of music genres that just has a certain something, it’s hard to explain,” she said. “I love all the classics, Wes Montgomery, Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong, oh and Ella Fitzgerald. Her rendition of “Stormy Weather” is my absolute favorite.”

The 3rd Monday Jazz Jam is a recurring event that will take place once again on Oct. 15 at the Naked Lounge in downtown Chico.

Alex Coba can be reached at [email protected] or @ThatOneGuyCoba on Twitter.