Based in Centralia, flugelhorn player and band leader Dmitri Matheny teamed up as a mentor with the Kelso High School all-star jazz combo in the KNKX studios and told us that smaller towns can provide great opportunities for musicians willing to look for them. These teens from the south end of the state made the most of their opportunity to play live on KNKX.
On the day that the nation's biggest high school jazz competition, Essentially Ellington, began in New York City, band leader Daniel Hartley showed the state's budding jazz talent can be found well outside the Puget Sound region. In his third year, he's developing a group of young players with an obvious passion for jazz.
Ian McTamaney showed off skills at the piano and clarinet, while the guitar/bass/drums rhythm section was highlighted by an impressive bowed bass solo on "Angel Eyes" from Isaac Ford. Brenden Kazensky on guitar and Kyle Torgerson behind the drums both shined brightly, pointing to great things to come from Kelso's jazz kids.