Hundreds of jazz fans made their way to venues throughout Seaside over the weekend to hear a collection of traditional stylists from around the Northwest and beyond. The 35th annual festival, presented by the Lighthouse Jazz Society, brings a mission of passing the musical torch from one generation to another. To that end, the society’s longtime directors, Ruth Johnson and Judy Shook, passed the baton to festival “director in training” Dennis Brodigan.
On Saturday afternoon at the Seaside Civic and Convention Center, Black Swan set the pace for a floor filled with dancers who pulled out well-honed skills in the fox trot, jitterbug and swing styles. Black Swan, named for a music label in the 1920s, made way for Blue Street and Uptown Lowdown in the Pacific Room, the largest of the festival’s halls. Uptown Lowdown, based in the Seattle area, offered an unusual trio of bass saxophonists. The horns, rarely seen onstage, much less in multiples, were punctuated by Art Horgen’s tuba underneath.
In the Necanicum Room and River View room, bands alternated throughout the day, with Gino and the Lone Gunmen, the Dave Bennett Quartet and the local group Maggie and the Katz, based in Cannon Beach. Personnel included Maggie Kitson on vocals, Richard Thomasian on guitar, Ted Brainard on bass and Dave Gager on drums. Jazz Attitude featured Nehalem’s Bob Brook on guitar, Doug Proctor on guitar, Leo Lawyer on percussion and vocalist Sydney Elliott.
Bands also played at the Elks Lodge and Best Western Ocean View Resort, with Saturday late-night performances.
The music extended through Sunday, with a gospel concert at the convention center and a performance by the Seaside High School Jazz Band.