Jazzing up the local music scene

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The Summer Jazz Band has kicked off rehearsals once again in Point Pleasant Beach, continuing a longtime musical tradition in the borough. [DANIELLA HEMINGHAUS]

The Summer Jazz Band has begun another season of continuing a longtime musical tradition in Point Pleasant Beach and is seeking members to join the ensemble.

Leaders said the summer band provides a chance for the local community to play music together, no matter what the skill level of the individuals involved. 

Rehearsals will take place Wednesday evenings, July 14 and 21 from 6 to 7 p.m. at Point Pleasant Beach High School, 700 Trenton Ave. A performance is set to take place Wednesday, July 28, with a rain date of Aug. 4, at 6 p.m. at the bandshell, at the corners of Baltimore and Arnold avenues.

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If any alumni, community members or other individuals would like to join, email high school band director, Emma Fretz, at fretze@ptbeach.com. The ensemble is available to all in the area, not just those of Point Pleasant Beach.

“It is a longstanding tradition in Point Beach and it is nice because it is a community outreach, too,” Ms. Fretz said. “It is for kids that are in band now, incoming students, alumni, local townspeople who play, and it is no cost to them and then we put on a concert at the bandshell the last Wednesday of July.

“We have 15 to 20 [musicians] most years, which is a great size for a jazz band. We did take last year off for COVID, but I still ran something in its stead, but it was not a performance, so this year we will finally be back, which will be wonderful. It is just a sweet little evening.”

“We are doing a lot of big band, swing, more classic and standard jazz charts that people love to hear and musicians love to play, so it is really crowd-pleaser type of stuff,” she added.

“It’s also charts that are quick to learn, too, because people already know how they go, how the song sounds, so it is a lot easier oftentimes, especially for people who have maybe taken a couple years off.”

This is an excerpt of the print article. For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.

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