By SCOTT WEISSER
THE GOSHEN NEWS
When Jesse Wade was in elementary school, his dad had him pick out a musical instrument to play. Jesse chose trumpet.
Good pick, apparently.
As with fellow Goshen High School senior Sean Weber, Wade’s musical talent has landed him a prestigious gig. Weber and Wade will perform with the All-State Jazz Band Friday in Fort Wayne. The band will play during the Indiana Music Educators Association convention.
“I’m really proud of them,” GHS band director Tom Cox said of his pupils. “They practice hard. They work hard.”
Cox said students audition for a spot on the All-State Jazz Band via MP3. Music to be played during the showcase is then mailed to the musicians who make the cut.
The Jazz Band will rehearse for two to three hours today and all day Thursday, Cox said. The musicians will also get some rehearsal time prior to the show Friday.
“These are kids from all over Indiana,” Cox said of the Jazz Band line-up. The inclusion of Weber and Wade means they’re each one of the top five student musicians in the state on their instruments, he indicated.
Trombonist Weber’s involvement with jazz has included being part of a middle school jazz program — and playing an entirely different instrument.
“I played bass at the time,” he said. “That kind of got me interested in some more jazz initially, starting to learn the bass in a jazz sense...”
During his sophomore year in high school, more trombone players were needed in the band, so Weber switched. His senior year marks the second consecutive year Weber has been selected to be part of the all-state group.
“It was fantastic,” Weber said of playing with the caliber of musicians in the Jazz Band.
Wade said his father introduced him to the music of jazz artists including Louis Armstrong and Miles Davis.
“I became really interested (in jazz) through that,” Wade said. When he heard Goshen Middle School had a jazz ensemble, he jumped at the chance to be a part of it.
“I’ve always really loved jazz,” Wade said. “I’ve always been around it.”