Well, does being the vocalist daughter
of the greatest Jazz SWING bassist
of the Count Basie Big Band make HER Jazz royalty?
Many would say a resounding, YES!
My name is Karen Jones and my father, Eddie Jones,
played bass with Count Basie’s Big Band
in the great Swing era of the 50’s.
No need to kiss my ring, but applause
at the end of a song would be greatly appreciated.
All kidding aside, I am proud to be Eddie Jones’s daughter.
I grew up with that huge BIG BAND BRASS SOUND
with my father thumping away in the powerful rhythm section.
I remember listening…..watching….being purely fascinated
with the many “uncles” (members of the band) playing so perfectly!
I was in awe. I love that sound.
This last weekend I had the pleasure of singing
with the Michael Evans's Big Band here in Las Vegas.
It was a magical afternoon at the Ron DeCar’s Event Center
on the infamous Las Vegas Boulevard.
The room was packed and there was even a newlywed couple,
clad in 40’s attire, swing dancing to celebrate their union!
The jazz events in Las Vegas are few and far between.
Ever since the Jazzy days of Sinatra and the Rat Pack.
Local music is mostly dedicated to Rock and Roll or
Alternative Rock bands. Jazz has largely taken a back seat.
Therefore, major kudos to Marsha and Norm Ross
(the dynamic organizing duo) for their continued efforts to
keep Jazz alive in Las Vegas.
It is their union with Michael Evans
that has produced the perfect spot for a BIG BAND
every Saturday afternoon, that satisfies
a large starving jazz community.
The 20 piece Big Band is pure delight and Michael Evans
is a band leader with presence, wit and finesse.
All the brass sections have a lovely round sound
and the rhythm section is in the swinging pocket!
It was a pleasure to jump on stage and take on the position
that so many Jazz vocalists like Ella Fitzgerald, Sara Vaughn
and Sinatra, have done before me.
I look forward to having the opportunity to step into those shoes again!
So my dear readers, if you happen to be in Vegas
on a Saturday afternoon and you need a jazz fix,
head on down to the strip (downtown) and
fill your musical tummy with Michael Evans’s Big Band.
See you there!