Leota student Ian Jacobson (left), 14, playing his trombone at the New Orleans Restaurant.
Photo by Brenda Vanderloop.
by Jeff Switzer
Leota Junior High student Ian Jacobson has been playing trombone for five years, and when the school district cut the jazz program at his school, he was driven to find a performing venue somewhere else.
The 14-year-old musician took the cue from his Mills Music teacher and joined Seattle Jazz, a 14-piece band made up of area youth from 7th grade to high school.
"It's a lot of fun," Jacobson said. "I enjoy playing jazz; it's a lot more fun than orchestra music."
Jacobson said he is learning a lot and enjoys playing with the group, as well as hearing the other groups who tour the area. A ninth-grader now, he can join the jazz program at Woodinville High next year or stay with Seattle Jazz, but until then, he's gaining experience and having fun.
His parents, Paul Jacobson and Brenda Vanderloop, said they recently heard him play "Route 66."
"You don't expect to see or hear your kid performing that one," Paul Jacobson said.
Vanderloop says Ian has worked very hard over the years and has learned to appreciate the instrument itself.
"And it actually sounds like music, now," Paul added.
The group recently performed at Westlake Center, and has performances next year at the Jazz Cafe, The Jazz Underground, Jazz Alley, and Kane Hall.