Northwest Swing is dedicated to bringing the big band sound of the early 20th century to our community through affordable and accessible concerts held all around the Puget Sound region. Through our variety of musical styles, we seek to foster an understanding and appreciation for the versatility of the big band, while also providing area musicians an opportunity to take part in our musical experience.
IN THE BEGINNING...
In 2012, the Boeing Employees Concert Band was getting ready for another rehearsal. It was still early, and a bunch of us were already there with our horns out, messing around. Two saxophone players, Cory Maccarrone and Joe Keyes, started playing a jazz tune, and were startled to find the tuba player (John Bigelo) playing a perfect bass line to their melody. Curious, they played another jazz tune, and he followed right along!
This made them realize that there might be the seed of interest in the band. Cory started talking with other members of the band, and found that a bunch of other saxes, trombones, and trumpets were interested in playing jazz, even if many of them hadn't played for quite some time. At this point, all that was needed was a rhythm section. He went to a bunch of the BECB drummers, and managed to recruit Tom Dean to be the drummer, as well as pianist Rowena Beaudry and guitar player Edgar Heimerl. It was decided that Cory would lead the group.
From the outset, we wanted the band to be about learning and stretching abilities, while still being fun. Given that many of the members had been out of jazz for years, this tactic proved important. Early rehearsals started with junior-level jazz charts, slowly working into progressively more difficult and involved music. We worked on improvisation, jazz scales, even a bit of music theory.
Over the years, we've continued to push ourselves harder and harder, becoming ever tighter and stronger, and adding more and more challenging and interesting music into our mix. We've taken a variety of different gigs from all over the Puget Sound region and continue to look to expand our reach and abilities. Although many people have left, and still more joined the band, we've always managed to keep our ever-improving attitude, always striving to be the best we can be.
We are Northwest Swing.