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Jazz Kids Join Seasoned Musicians for Free Concert
The Cool Cats will play The Wicked Spud Thursday night.
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Wednesday, September 6, 2023


Meet the Cool Cats on Thursday.

The new horn-based band featuring students from the Wood River High School band and veteran musicians in the valley will perform with CKM, a classic rock and blues band from Boise, on Thursday, Sept. 7, at the Wicked Spud in Hailey.

The fun-filled show for the entire family will run from 6 to 9 p.m. outside on the patio.

Rebecca DeShield started the new band to bring awareness to the high school band program. Most of the kids are in the Wood River high School Jazz Horn Band

“We need more kids in the band and we thought that, if other kids see how fun it is to play, some of them will want to learn to play musical instruments, which is something they can do throughout their lives,” she said. “And it creates a band so the high school kids can play with seasoned musicians. One of the musicians who will be playing with us, for instance, is Greg Carroll, a harmonica player who has performed with Robert Palmer and other stars.”

The high school players met some of those in the Boise band when they performed for local elementary, middle and high school students as part of a nonprofit organization called Boise Blues in the Schools.

“They wanted to jump start a band that features the kids,” said DeShields.

The local kids who will be playing Thursday night include Orie DeShields, a tenor-saxophone player who has performed for the Tournament of Roses Parade and Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. Others are trombonist Chris Perez-Vivar, alto saxophone player Rayce Nelson, and John Gianmarco-Ortiz.

Playing with them will be WRHS band teacher Patric Herb; Ted Dyer, who has played in the Duchin Room at Sun Valley Resort and with the Wood River Orchestra; Becky DeShields and Rich Aguirre. They will be joined by vocalist Jamie McLean.

DeShields said this will be the first of many gigs: “It’s all about enriching and instilling a love of music in these youngsters and creating a fun outlet for other kids to see what kids are doing in band.”


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