On January 19th we took a group of students and instructors to Kodak Hall to hear the O’Connor Band. Wanting to make the first journey special, we rented a limousine to pick the group up, so we could chat and have fun on the trip down and back.
There were two primary purposes to this outing:
1) Create an awareness of music styles outside the norm of what is commonly heard, that introduce us to terrific and imaginative musicians
2) Create an uplifting atmosphere between students and staff that expand musical horizons and create memorable moments that reflect the core values of RAMP (Rochester Area Music Project).
The evening started with Chris Wilson, who is a local entertainer and friends with the band. Sometimes when you say “local” that implies the person performing is not all that good. This is another aspect of what RAMP IS out to convey, local can mean VERY good. We have excellent musicians in the Rochester area – Chris Wilson is just one of those great talents. He presented some great twist on some cover tunes and shined on his original material.
The O’Connor Band performed at a stellar level and had nearly a full house. Kate Lee is the lead vocalist and one of the fiddle players, who also is from the Rochester area! Mark O’Connor is a superb violin/fiddle player and has performed across the music spectrum. At one point in the show he played every instrument on the stage. The bass player, Geoff Saunders, is a graduate from Eastman School of Music. So, I rest my case on the quality of “local” musicians.
Our plan is to have RAMP Musical Journeys strung out over time. It’s just another great reason to be part of our ‘family’ of music.