Jazz ensembles perform Radiohead covers

By David Lim

“Call the concert Radio-jazz-head,” Studio Jazz Band pianist Nick Healy ’13 of the Radiohead-infused Winter Jazz Concert said. Two ensembles played covers of Radiohead songs “Paranoid Android” and “High and Dry” as their final numbers Dec. 3 in Rugby Auditorium.

All four groups in the jazz program took the stage for “An Evening of Jazz” to perform jazz classics such as “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “Sunny Side” and “The Blues Walk” in addition to the more unconventional jazz arrangements.

Jazz Director Shawn Costantino picked the majority of the pieces in the concert before his departure, including the Radiohead covers.

Rimvydas Paulikas, nicknamed “Rim,” conducted the ensembles in the absence of Costantino, who has been out of school since mid-October.

Paulikas, a saxophonist who knew Costantino in graduate school, is directing the jazz program until Costantino returns.

“I love [Radiohead]’s music,” Paulikas said. “Even though it was very challenging, the kids learned [the music] faster than the other pieces because they knew it and liked it.”

Another highlight of the concert was the Jazz Explorers’ performance of “Weak” by Gretchen Parlato, which featured vocals by Bella Hicks ’12. Noah Weinman ’12 on trumpet and Bradley Ho ’12 on alto saxophone accompanied her. The crowd applauded repeatedly after their solos.

Hicks, who performed with Jazz Explorers last year, learned the song on her own and rehearsed after school and during frees a few times with the Jazz Explorers.

“I think it’s so much fun because I’m not involved in the jazz program, but I sing in Jazz Singers, and so it’s really fun to be able to merge the vocal and the instrumental,” Hicks said. “It’s always just really cool for me to see what they can do, and they’re really inspiring musicians.”

She currently is working with one of the jazz combos and hopes to perform again with them.

“I love performing with them,” Hicks said. “It’s so much fun.”