The Cedartown Performing Arts Center once again proved that its stage is for much more than just plays, and by hosting the Joe Gransden 16 Piece Big Band, locals were treated to the sounds of jazz from one of the scene’s most prominent rising stars.
The group, originally formed in 2009, has toured the country and released several collections, and while many have heard them on the radio, the bands’ October 12 appearance in Cedartown offered a chance to see and hear Gransden and company perform in the flesh.
Whether pouring their heart into a trumpet or piano solo or simply dancing to some of their biggest hits, those on stage turned the event from a regular concert into a show.
“The Big Band truly has its own sound and really swings,” Gransden says of his band. “I attribute that to the arrangements that were all written by jazz trombone great Wes Funderburk! It’s such a pleasure to front a band of top musicians that can interpret Wes’s arrangements perfectly! These guys are the best!”
They were also joined by blues singer and solo artist Francine Smith who performed various songs and danced alongside the band. She’s been the regular singing partner and band member of Lyle Lovett since the 1980’s, and while she also tours the country, she still seemed genuinely excited to perform in a small town like Cedartown.