Music students have been notoriously known for being piled with classes. This large class count coming from an educational paradox in which a large portion of there required classes consist of ensembles, studios, and combos, classes they love to take, but only give them on average a single credit each. With this reality on their shoulders, music students find "free time" to be a privilege and not a right, having to take 10 or more classes on average to try and meet their goals for graduation. Throughout these busy schedules, music students try and do what they love, play their favorite kinds of music. Many of the courses at FAU allow them to flex their muscles in certain areas, like FAU's symphonic band, and Wind Ensemble. But there are restrictions, and even the smaller combos on campus hold there students to specific musical rules and playing limitations.
"You're not going to get it all from a textbook"- Sam Winikoff
Seeming to almost be driven by this concept, the music students at FAU have been on the lookout for places to play outside of the classroom environment. Places where they can be free to express themselves in all ways and play the music that they each love, never bound by any gerne or style limitations. FAU Senior Anthony Casamassima, had been one of these students searching for a place to express himself outside of the educational realm. A saxophone player who plays in various small groups and bands around Boca Raton, as well as the University Big Bands, Anthony has had his fare share of stage and University playing experience. "But there still wasn't a place where I could just hang out with friends, play the music I wanted to play, not the music someone told me I had to play." At the start of the Fall 2010 semester, Anthony got in contact with the owners of The Funky Buddha Lounge in Boca Raton, an upbeat and musically hyped venue where students had been coming to since its opening for Kava, Drinks, and Live Entertainment.
"I thought to myself, we have a place right here next to the University where students always come to hang out anyways. I needed to turn this into something big, not just for me, but for all of us."
And with that idea, FAU Jazz Jam Mondays was born. Every Monday since its inception in August, student musicians have been coming out to express themselves with no restrictions and no holding back. You can even find various members from Hoot Wisdom Recording's roster at the Jams, such as percussionist Seth Bailen, Drummer of the band, Bell Tower Falls. Tunes of all styles can be heard at the Buddha Lounge, ranging from ealry 50's swing to latin fusion epic's such as Chick Corea's "Armando's Rumba".
Click on the link bellow the next photo to view a video of the jazz cats playing a smooth Bossa Nova Tune written by Antônio Carlos Jobim, entitled " Wave."
Recently, the Jazz Jam's have been drawing a crowd from all different south Florida backgrounds. Singers from as far as Hialeah have visited the lounge, as well as guitarists and brass players from the Miami area. "It's a great experience, being able to come out and play with all these people that are interested in the same thing I am. Just making music and having fun. Listening and learning." says musician Igor Rudenko about the environment at Funky Buddha.
In short, it seems that Anthony Casamassima and his fellow FAU students have now put together something wonderful where musicians and friends can hang out and play.
"It's a great thing," Anthony says, "especially now that all these other people with different majors and people from outside the University are coming as well. Its all about the music, and everyone can enjoy. We have the students and musicians who come out to play and support every Monday. And we also have a nice crowd of students and people from all educational and professional backgrounds who just want to come, hang out, and listen to good music. Its a win win situation."
Check out the next Jazz Jam Monday Oct 4(and every monday after), at the Funky Buddha Lounge:
Funky Buddha Lounge & Brewery
2621 N Federal Hwy
Boca Raton,FL US 33431
Hoot Wisdom would like to wish Anthony and everyone at the Jazz Jam's good luck and happy jamming.
Thank you for reading and keep checking us out here at The Hoot Blog for updates on ALL things music at Florida Atlantic University. Next week we will be reviewing and giving a preview to our CompOWLation album being released on NOV. 5th right here at FAU. Remember Hoot Wisdom is here to serve you!
FAU's Hoot Wisdom Recordings.