NACOGDOCHES, Texas – Stephen F. Austin State University’s Steel Band will present a multifaceted program when the band, also known as Jacks of Steel, performs at 6 p.m. Sunday, April 24, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.
“The concert will consist of a diverse variety of styles, including traditional, contemporary, pop songs and even some ska music,” said Dr. Brad Meyer, director of percussion studies for the SFA School of Music.
The Steel Band will perform the fun ’80s tune “Take on Me” by A-Ha! and the Ernies’ “Inspector 8,” which is an energetic ska tune arranged by Brian Nozny. Ska is a modern style of vocalized Jamaican popular music, which emerged in the 1950s as a blend of African-Jamaican folk music, calypso and American rhythm and blues.
The band will get the audience “grooving and moving,” Meyer said, with “Happy” by Pharrell Williams and “Uptown Funk” by Bruno Mars.
Cole Concert Hall is located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, 2210 Alumni Drive. Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.
Meyer described the Steel Band as “one of the most popular and requested ensembles in the School of Music.” With 16 members, the group uses a full set of steel pans, including three leads, two double tenors, two cellos and bass pans as well as a large rhythm section with drumset, electric bass and various Latin percussion. The group performs a wide variety of music, including traditional Caribbean music, pop, rock and Latin.
“The nature of the ensemble allows for student members to develop skills in improvisation and music arranging,” Meyer said.
Membership is open to both music and non-music majors with consent of the instructor. The band is available to perform at private local events. To reserve the group to perform, contact Meyer at firstname.lastname@example.org.