HARLINGEN — On Feb 26, 1917, a group of moderately successful New Orleans-based jazz musicians walked into the Victor Talking Machine Company studio in New York City and recorded Livery Stable Blues.
When released on the Victor label, it became an instant hit and ignited the jazz world.
Today, Livery Stable Blues by the Original Dixieland ‘Jass’ Band is considered the very first commercially successful jazz recording.
Music lovers in and around Harlingen have a unique opportunity to hear Livery Stable Blues and other classic, endearing melodies performed live as The Side Street Strutters and vocalist Meloney Collins present Vinyl Jazz: A Century Celebration at the Harlingen Municipal Auditorium on Friday, March 9, at 7:30 p.m.
The concert will feature a potpourri of jazz, pop and R & B songs which have shaped our musical landscape over the last 100 years. These include Rhapsody in Blue, written by 25-year-old George Gershwin, Duke Ellington’s Mood Indigo, and All or Nothing At All, which launched the career of a young singer named Frank Sinatra.
Journey back to 1946 when Nat King Cole took us down the famous Route 66 and Ella Fitzgerald launched us out of this world with her signature song, How High the Moon.
Discover how pianist Dave Brubeck and saxophonist Paul Desmond composed a catchy little tune with five beats to the measure and hit it big with Take Five, the first million-selling jazz recording.
Relive the excitement of 1963, when Louis Armstrong’s recording of Hello Dolly knocked the Beatles out of the number one spot on the pop charts.
These jazz pioneers influenced many new generations of talented artists, even in the world of pop music and R&B.
The Side Street Strutters and Ms. Collins will present the music of several crossover performers such as Etta James, Aretha Franklin, Weather Report, and Michael Bublé.
They also will explore how jazz spread around the world through vinyl, CDs and digital sound, drawing on different national, regional and local musical cultures, and giving rise to many distinctive styles.
Since 1983, The Side Street Strutters have shared their love of jazz and outstanding musicianship with audiences at jazz festivals, formal concerts, Walt Disney Company events, and through recordings.
They possess a burning desire to explore the colorful nuances and creative challenges of this indigenous American art form.
The award-winning musical ensemble has performed more than 500 concerts in 49 states and nine countries, creating a lasting impression in the hearts of people everywhere.
IF YOU GO
WHAT: The Side Street Strutters perform on stage
WHERE: Harlingen Municipal Auditorium, 1204 Fair Park
WHEN: Friday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m.
HOW: This is the final show of the nonprofit Harlingen Concert Association’s 2017-18 season. For tickets, visit the auditorium box office, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or call (956) 216-5990.
MORE: The Harlingen Concert Association has been presenting internationally-acclaimed artists to the community since the 1930s. This all-volunteer, nonprofit organization is committed to enriching the cultural life of the Harlingen area through live performances. Thanks to season ticket-holders and sponsors, these concerts can be offered at very affordable, family-friendly prices. For more information, visit, www.HarlingenConcert.com.