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Glenwoods Summer of Jazz is back

April E. ClarkVail, CO, Colorado
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GLENWOOD SPRINGS New Orleans holds a special place in Bob and Mary Noones hearts.And, once again, theyre celebrating the fervor of the citys music scene during the Glenwood Springs Summer of Jazz concert series opening June 6.

Theres just so much energy, Mary Noone said. Its a very alive scene down there. Its kind of contagious.As the husband-and-wife organizers of Summer of Jazz now in its 22nd year of providing eight weeks of free music the Noones have turned their attention to artists who survived Hurricane Katrina. Many of New Orleans most celebrated jazz musicians still suffer the effects of the destructive hurricane and are displaced or living in temporary housing, Mary Noone said. The couple recently visited the city while attending the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, which took place April 27-29 and May 4-6, to seek out talent for this years Summer of Jazz.It seemed like New Orleans was physically getting better, but emotionally its a hard thing to deal with, Mary Noone said. Its going to take a long time to heal. I just cant imagine living down there during hurricane season.

The Noones have such a strong connection with Summer of Jazz musicians, they invite them into their Glenwood Springs home for dinners. While in New Orleans, the Noones received similar welcome.Going to Jazz Fest, this tremendous resource is there. Weve just discovered this incredible resource of talent, Bob Noone said. Everybody down there was so encouraging and so supportive of each other, helping each other book shows. Theres a lot of energy down there. These guys are living it every day.The Noones hope to transfer that spirited Jazz Fest intensity to the Summer of Jazz stage June 6 through July 25. Funk-blues guitarist Mem Shannon, a former Bourbon Street cabbie, opens the series at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 6, at Two Rivers Park.

Thats going to be fun, Bob Noone said, of the first show. Weve got a great horn section were putting together.Since returning from Jazz Fest, the Noones have been busy finalizing the Summer of Jazz schedule, securing sponsorships and planning promotion of the event. The deadline for major sponsors to be included in printed material is Friday.The theme year in and year out is to present as many aspects of good, live music over an eight-week period as possible, Bob Noone said. This is really a unique, grass-roots musical presentation, and we need to nurture it the best we can.After becoming closely acquainted with last years New Orleans musicians, the Noones plan a second summer of opening their home to provide hospitality to tragedy survivors.Youve got to take care of these musicians. Everybodys just so comfortable to talk to, so we invite them over to our house, Mary Noone said. Its a bigger thing for us than just the eight weeks. Weve really invested in New Orleans.


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