NATCHITOCHES – Justin Lindsay is hoping he can help others learn to love music the way he does. Lindsay, a freshman music education major from Shreveport, will perform with the Northwestern State University Jazz Orchestra Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in Magale Recital Hall. Admission is free and open to the public. Galindo Rodriguez will conduct the Jazz Orchestra.
Lindsay, a graduate of Captain Shreve High School, came to Northwestern State with a firm career plan.
“I decided on music education because I would like to teach music and spread the knowledge,” said Lindsay, who is also a member of the Spirit of Northwestern Marching Band and the NSU Jazz Combo. “I expect to learn how to engage students, how to find their interest and help them develop and grow to be good musicians. I’ve already learned a lot. I learn from Dr. (Jeff) Mathews about how to direct a band rehearsal. Dr. (Paul) Forsyth has taught me some techniques on the saxophone.”
Lindsay began listening to and playing jazz about four years ago.
“I started playing jazz my freshman year in high school. I heard the Miles Davis CD Kind of Blue and thought that was something I would like to get into,” said Lindsay. “It was different from what I had heard from previous artists. It wasn’t smooth. It was a nice, straight-ahead sound plus it featured (saxophonists) John Coltrane and Cannonball Adderly.”
Lindsay, a saxophone player, has gotten comfortable with the saxophone as he has practiced and performed. He credits Larry Pierson, who gave him weekly private lessons for giving him insights into jazz studies and helping him develop as a musician.
“The saxophone really speaks to me and connects with my body,” said Lindsay. “The sax gives you a lot of room. You can make it what you want it to be and have your own voice with it.”
Lindsay heard the NSU Jazz Orchestra perform at the Louisiana Music Educators Association Convention and decided he wanted to bed part of the ensemble.
“The orchestra had a good blend with a lot of good musicians,” said Lindsay. “I knew I could come here and grow. Mr. Rodriguez explained to me that there were a number of opportunities to get involved in a number of ensembles and that freshmen get to be part of the groups and get solo time.”
The Jazz Orchestra will play In the Mood by Joe Garland with arrangement by Glenn Miller, A String of Pearls by Jerry Gray, Stompin’ at the Savoy by Benny Goodman, Andy Razaf, Chick Webb and Edgar Sampson and arranged by Michael Sweeney.
The program will also include Harlem Airshaft by Duke Ellington and transcribed by David Berger, In a Sentimental Mood by Ellington and arranged by Mike Tomaro, What a Wonderful World by Bob Thiele and David Weiss and arranged by Bob Secor.
Also on the program are Moten Swing by Benny Moten and arranged by Nestico, Secret Love by Paul Francis Webster and Sammy Fain and arranged by Dave Wolpe, A Salute to Glenn Miller including Moonlight Serenade, Pennsylvania 6-5000 and Little Brown Jug, Woodchopper’s Ball by Joe Bishop and Woody Herman and That Old Black Magic by Johnny Mercer and Harold Arlen and arranged by Billy May.
“One piece that stood out for me is Glenn Miller’s String of Pearls,” said Lindsay. “It’s classic, old-school dance music. I started playing it and grew to like it.”