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New jazz band formed by men ‘young at heart’

Date Posted: 2006-08-25

A new jazz band is about to make it’s debut on Okinawa, but listeners will be surprised by the members.

The Grand-pa Jazz Orchestra, which makes it initial performance September 23rd, the first day of autumn, is comprised of 18 members ages 50~70. They’re Okinawan and Japanese, as well as American, and hold day jobs as directors of companies.

Several are professional musicians as well. Five saxophones, five trumpets, four trombones, a piano, bass guitar and drums account for 17 of the positions. The final slot is filled by a lady vocalist.

The new jazz band will be playing Glenn Miller music, among others, and 67-year-old trumpet player Frank Gordon says “everybody has the feeling of good harmony.” Band leader Yushichi Teruya, 63, says he’s “always wanted to have a band,” so he asked the Okinawa Jazz Players Association for help. They not only helped, but they joined. In.

The initial concert is September 23rd at Ryukyu Shimpo Hall, beginning at 7pm.

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