For Hometown News
Treasure Coast singer Jonathan Cummings will be performing with his jazz ensemble at StarStruck Theatre on Aug. 25. in a concert he is calling: Jazz, Then &Now. Tickets are $25, and 10% of the proceeds will be contributed to The Fort Pierce Jazz and Blues Society. Another 10% will go to St. Luke's EpiscopalChurch in Stuart. Tickets can be obtained by calling (772) 634-0178 or going towww.jcafjazz.com.
Several members of the Fort Pierce Jazz and Blues Society will join Jonathan on stage for a night of what he calls traditional jazz music.
“Most people who were alive during the thirties and forties refer to this kind of music as the pop music of their time.” Jonathan said. “But the truth is, this music – made popular by singers like Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and Ella Fitzgerald – is traditional jazz.”
Jonathan fell in love with jazz in the late 1970s when hewas 15. By the time he was eighteen he had already learned to scat – animprovisational vocal performance that is specific to jazz music. “Jazz is inmy very soul.” Jonathan said. “The problem is finding an audience for the musictoday”.
“What's the difference between a rock musician and a jazz musician?” Jonathan said. “A rock musician plays three chords in front of three thousand fans. A jazz musician plays three thousand chords in front of three fans.” In an effort to promote jazz, one organization after another champions the preservation of the music, claiming it is the only true American art form, with roots existing exclusively in the US.
Whether that statement is true or not, jazz music, with its horn players, upright acoustic bass, and improvisational solos, is radically different from other genres. “Folks who have not experienced jazz music first hand should come to at least one show,” Jonathan said. “The worst that could happen is a new found appreciation will emerge. At best, jazz will find one more lover.