OHS to host MSU Jazz Band with special guest in free concert

John Hill Leads the OHS Jazz Band – Leader File Photo.

By James Hanlon
Leader Staff Writer
The Oxford High School Jazz Band will open for the MSU Jazz Band in the OHS Performing Arts Center on Thursday, Feb. 24, at 7 p.m. The concert will feature four-time Grammy-nominated vibraphonist Stefon Harris.
“I would love for the community to come out to hear a world-class jazz band and Stefon Harris, one of the best jazz musicians on the planet,” said John Hill, Oxford’s jazz band director.
Harris plays the vibraphone, a percussion instrument similar to a xylophone. Hill remembers seeing him in concert 20 years ago. “He is not only an amazing musician, but just an amazing performer to watch,” Hill said. “His spirit and his excitement for the music is amazing, it’s great to just watch him perform.”
Before the concert, the MSU band will work with Oxford students in a jazz clinic. Then they can watch the college students rehearse together.
“I want it to be more than just a concern for the kids,” Hill said. “I want it to be something where they remember playing with these amazing musicians.”
This will be the third time the Michigan State band has performed in Oxford. Past concerts have featured pianist Kenny Baron and clarinetist Anat Cohen. “They love playing in our auditorium and they love working with our students,” Hill said.
The MSU band also happens to include an Oxford alumni: a “phenomenal” guitarist named Luke Sittard who is now a senior at the university.

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