Lucian Cobb

Craig Gildner Big Band at Glen Echo – March 10, 2018

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It’s always a pleasure to work with bandleader Craig Gildner and I’m excited to be joining the Craig Gildner Big Band, along with my husband Lucian Cobb as the featured trombone player, at Glen Echo Park’s historic Spanish Ballroom on March 10, 2018. We’ll have new tunes for you, or at least some new-to-me tunes that I’m excited to present to a room full of dancers!

You know the drill – beginner lesson at 8:00 p.m., dancing from 9:00 p.m. until midnight!  Come swing out, DC!

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Keenan McKenzie Releases Album of Original Swing Music

23659509_10103419847799641_1131617545580786145_nIf you love Keenan McKenzie’s original tunes and arrangements on the Mint Julep Jazz Band albums, you can now get even more of this great music in your life – Keenan is releasing a brand new album of original swing music written by the maestro himself called Forged in Rhythm, available now for preview and pre-order on Bandcamp and full release coming December 5!  I am excited that Keenan decided to write 7 original vocal tunes (in addition to the 8 instrumental tunes) and invited me to sing on his debut release – what a magical thing to be the first to sing a song!  We had such fun recording this album in Los Angeles in August and I’ve been eagerly anticipating sharing this album with all of you.

Here’s Keenan’s post about the album release:

“If you’d asked me a few years ago, I wouldn’t have imagined my first album would be 15 radio-length songs, all in 4/4 time. I now owe so much to the dance community that it’s hard to imagine it going any other way. Swing music has provided some unforgettable experiences and introduced me to a world of wonderful people, including Allison Meeks (you make my heart go thump thump thump!)

I’m thrilled to announce the upcoming release of FORGED IN RHYTHM. This album of original tunes is a celebration of my favorite ‘30s/‘40s musicians and a love letter to the swing dance scene. I got to work with some phenomenal players and great friends, and we had a blast making this record. I can’t wait for you to hear it!

Keenan McKenzie……………reeds
Gordon Au…………………..trumpet
Lucian Cobb……………..trombone
Jonathan Stout……………….guitar
Chris Dawson………………….piano
Seth Ford-Young………………bass
Josh Collazo………………….drums
Laura Windley………………..vocals
Miles Senzaki……………..engineer

Artwork and design by Ryan Calloway Art

Available December 5th on Bandcamp, CD Baby, iTunes, Amazon and more!”

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Photograph by Brad Nathanson Photography

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Chick Webb Night Live Stream Recording

Here it is, 3 sets (and two encores!) of Chick Webb music in all its glory at Lindy Focus 2016!  As with any tribute, we hope that the band was able to capture the magic of a night at the Savoy Ballroom, with the most famous of the Savoy’s house bands.  Much love to everyone who contributed to the transcription project to make this dream a reality!

Transcriptions by Mark Lopeman, Dan Barrett, and Keenan McKenzie.  Performed by the Jonathan Stout Lindy Focus All-Star Orchestra, with Jonathan Stout (guitar), Chris Dawson (piano), Marquis Howell (bass), Josh Collazo (drums), Gordon Au (trumpet), Ken McGee (trumpet), Jon-Erik Kellso (trumpet), Lucian Cobb (trombone), Dan Barrett (trombone), Albert Alva (reeds), Dan Levinson (reeds), Jonathan Doyle (reeds), Keenan McKenzie (reeds), and Laura Windley (vocals).

Durham Magazine – Getting to Know the Mint Julep Jazz Band

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Durhamites, be sure to pick up a copy of the April, 2016 issue of Durham Magazine for a feature on the Mint Julep Jazz Band!  Durham Magazine writer Sophia Lucente interviewed yours truly, Lucian Cobb, and Keenan McKenzie to put together this snapshot of the band’s history and life in Durham.  You can read the article (as well as the entire issue) online here.

Boilermaker Jazz Band at CUALX

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Excited to be joining up with Pittsburgh’s fantastic Boilermaker Jazz Band to sing at CUALX (Catholic University of America Lindy Exchange) this Friday, March 21, 2014! My husband, trombonist Lucian Cobb, and I will be filling in for regulars Gerry and Jennie.

It’s a college Lindy exchange, but we hope the college kids and the rest of the DC swing dance community will come swing out!

Performing with the Craig Gildner Big Band, February 16, 2013

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The Craig Gildner Big Band is making its debut on February 16, 2012 at Glen Echo Park and Craig has invited my husband, trombone player Lucian Cobb, and I to perform with the band! Craig has selected some great swing tunes for this dance, which is sponsored by DCLX, the Washington, D.C. Lindy Exchange. Come one, come all to the Spanish Ballroom on February 16!

From the Facebook invite:

“DCLX is proud to present the premier performance of The Craig Gildner Big Band in the Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo Park on Saturday, February 16th!

This 12 piece orchestra combines the finest talent from the DC area with vintage arrangements designed for dancing. A big band is only as good as its rhythm section, and The Craig Gildner Big Band is a serious contender. The dynamics and blend of the sections creates an exciting experience: it can whisper and roar all in the same song. Also featuring Lucian Cobb on trombone and the lovely Laura Windley on vocals from the Mint Julep Jazz Band. Don’t miss the premier event for CGBB!!

The dance is $16 and begins at 9pm.

There will be a beginner swing lesson included in the cost of the dance from 8:00-9:00 PM. (Dance from 8:00 PM to 12:00 AM.)

Hope to see you all there!

Glen Echo Spanish Ballroom
7300 MacArthur Blvd.
Glen Echo, Maryland”

Lindy Focus 2012

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I am excited to announce that I will be working at this year’s Lindy Focus Dance Camp in three capacities! First, I will be a part of the event’s DJ roster, spinning tunes in the Balboa room, now known as the Avalon Balboa Dance Party. It has been a dream of mine for years to be invited to DJ at Lindy Focus and I am excited to be invited to spin my favorite tunes (i.e. uptempo swing) for the event.

Second, I will be making an appearance as Lindy Shopper on a panel discussion during Lindy Focus’ Field Day – the discussion is titled “Scene Building in the Age of New Media” and I will be accompanied by four other esteemed panelists, including Dance World Takeover‘s Rebecca Brightly, Wandering and Pondering‘s Jerry Almonte, Mobtown Ballroom‘s Michael Seguin, and international dance instructor and swing jazz guitarist Mike Faltesek.

Finally, I’ll be singing a few tunes with the Solomon Douglas Swingtet on December 30!

Did I mention I was excited?! I mean, who isn’t excited about the opportunity to attend Lindy Focus? The cherry on my awesome LF sundae is that my husband, trombonist Lucian Cobb, will be working the event, as well, performing with Ben Polcer, Glenn Crytzer, and Solomon Douglas – huzzah!

The Mint Julep Quintet Premiers October 5 at G2B Gastropub

The swanky lounge area at G2B

While an 8 piece band is great for dances and special events, it is generally too large for restaurants and bars in the Raleigh/Durham area. We’d still like to bring you the hot jazz and swing, so we’ve pared ourselves down to a quintet! The Mint Julep Quintet will have its first performance at G2B Gastropub in Durham, NC on October 5, 2012.

I’ll have one of these, please! And a side of Clarinet Marmalade.

G2B Gastropub
3211 Shannon Rd, Suite 106
Durham, NC
8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Admission: Free

We’re excited to be performing at G2B – we hope you’ll join us for a delicious dinner or come hang out and grab a beer!

Check out the gorgeous food and beverages on their Facebook page.

Hawkeye Swing Festival 2012

I’m going to use this opportunity to give a shout out to my husband, trombone player Lucian Cobb, who will be featured in the Hawkeye Swing Festival‘s all-star lineup of musicians for the April 13-15 weekend! He’ll be performing with some old tour buddies (Solomon Douglas, Patrick Breiner, Mike Cemprola) and some new acquaintances (Bria Skonberg, Mike Faltesek, Paul Lines, et al).

While I didn’t win the Hawkeye Swing Festival’s choreography competition, I’m still tagging along to Iowa City for dancing, competing, and hopefully some vintage shopping for a Lindy Shopper report. This will be my first mid-west Lindy Hop event and it will be good to experience that new dynamic, as well as take a mini-work/vacay with Lucian. 🙂

FAQ About Mint Julep Jazz Band

Starting a new band raises a lot of questions – in conversations with people, these questions have come up most frequently, so here’s a little FAQ to get you more acquainted with the Mint Julep Jazz Band:

What kind of music will you play?

We will focus on music from the 1920’s and 1930’s, but some early 1940’s tunes may creep into the mix. The band will be playing arrangements that are either transcribed from original recordings or reproductions of original recordings (or a combination of both – sometimes having a hi-fi reference helps a lot) and arrangements that our maestro Lucian Cobb creates on his own, based on songs from this era. We will be playing a few arrangements Lucian has done in the past and songs you may have heard vocalist Laura Windley perform, but the majority of the material will be new. Most importantly, this music will swing!

How many people will be in the band?

Right now, we really like the idea of having either a 7 or 8 piece band, giving us either a 3 or 4 piece rhythm section with 3 horns, plus a vocalist. With this format, we are able to play arrangements of big band or smaller group charts, giving us a fuller sound than a jazz combo. We are also able to offer a more affordable alternative to a big band.

Will you have a smaller group?

Unfortunately, we will not have a smaller group. We understand that this limits the venues we can play, especially locally, but we are more interested in creating a specific sound.

Who is going to be in the band?

We’d like to have a set lineup, but in the jazz world this is not always possible – some of our band members have bands of their own, so we are fortunate enough to have other jazz musicians that we have worked with in the past to fill their shoes. You can be sure you will see Peter Lamb (sax), Al Strong (trumpet), Aaron Tucker (drums), Jason Foureman (bass), Aaron Hill (sax), Rich Willey (trumpet), Kyle Santos (trumpet), Mark Wells (piano), and other great jazz musicians from the Triangle and beyond who we enjoy performing with and will lend their unique talents to this endeavor.

When will you be ready to play?

The goal is to be ready in March and, indeed, we’ve already got gigs in March 2012 and beyond! For more details, see our calendar page. We do have a show on February 23 for RDU Rent Party – we invite everyone to come to this sneak preview!

Where will you play?

Our bread and butter will be swing dances, and we’ve already got a wedding on the books. We are also available for community events, outdoor festivals, jazz societies, schools, private parties, charity events/fundraisers, historic and reenactment-related events, and, really, anywhere that people enjoy music. We are looking to travel outside of the Triangle area of North Carolina and would welcome gig opportunities in other cities.