I would like to respond to your December 1 article about Jazz at Joe's written by Bob Woodward. I found part of the focus of his review to be of doubtful relevancy, and some of his comments not representing my experience with this valuable music source.
Yes, the series of concerts has changed venues twice. The article comments on the last change and on "the size and feel of the room." Jazz is played and enjoyed at venues ranging from tiny coffee houses to huge outdoor stadiums. All of the venues for Jazz at Joes have been different. If your priority is a stereotypical jazz ambiance then, by all means, travel to one of the dwindling jazz clubs still in existence - many of which have their own issues. If your priority is the quality of the acoustics and the sound, then the current venue is the superior of the three Jazz at Joe's venues and 90 percent of all clubs I have been in. All of the musicians who have played at the church have raved about the acoustics. It may be a church building, but the fact is the acoustics are wonderful, the seats comfortable and the atmosphere friendly.
The article was correct in its assessment of the music, which should have been the main point. The quality of the musicianship is by any measure top-notch, world-class jazz. Last Saturday's performance by the Renato Caranto Quartet was outstanding. The Bend community is very fortunate to have music of this genre and caliber available to it at an affordable price - as well as for free. The objective should be encouraging people of all ages to experience America's indigenous art form, jazz.
No matter what your musical tastes, these performances can be exhilarating. Hopefully your article will not discourage people from attending these top-notch performances. If listening to good music is your priority, come to Jazz at Joes.
- Bob Keaton, Sisters