Swing jazz is headed for Hackettstown, New Jersey's Centenary Stage in the form of a Benny Goodman Tribute from the Stan Rubin Orchestra.
Stan Rubin will make his way to the Centenary Stage to lead the Benny Goodman Tribute on Saturday, January 12 at 8 P.M., when the Stan Rubin Orchestra arrives with its 15 piece big band to launch the January Jazz Fest in Hackettstown.
Bandleader, conductor, and clarinetist, the legendary Benny Goodman is synonymous with swing and big band jazz orchestra. With a career spanning over 50 years, Goodman worked with such legendary jazz performers such as Bix Beiderbecke, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Count Basie, Mildred Bailey, Bessie Smith and countless others. His following of fans and music enthusiasts has kept Benny Goodman’s name and legend an ever-present staple in jazz and swing music.
Celebrating the life and music of Benny Goodman is the acclaimed Stan Rubin Orchestra featuring bandleader, Herb Gardner. Stan Rubin, widely known as the foremost preserver of the swing style, enjoys his strong roots in the state of New Jersey, from his early days at Blair Academy in Blairstown, to his graduation from Princeton University, where the jazz band he started when he didn’t make the basketball team was eventually invited to perform for Grace Kelly’s wedding to the Prince of Monaco, which changed everything for Rubin.
Rubin has invested $300,000 of his own money into a library of swing, a collection of the arrangements played by the likes of Goodman, the Dorsey Brothers, Artie Shaw, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Harry James and a half-dozen others who swung America from the 1930s into the early 50s.
"The beauty of big-band swing is that it combines musical structure with improvisation, the hallmark of jazz, but swing doesn't abandon the melody like some modern jazz”– Stan Rubin
Bandleader Herb Gardner has performed with a renown roster of jazz luminaries, including Wynton Marsalis, Doc Cheatham, Max Kaminsky, Gene Krupa, Roy Eldridge and more. He toured with popular jazz performers Wild Bill Davison, Kenny Davern and Dick Wellstood. While serving as co-leader of Vince Giordano’s Nighthawks, Gardner played at George Bush’s inauguration and Bill Clinton’s victory party.
Tickets for the Benny Goodman Tribute with Stan Rubin Orchestra are about $ 27.50 in advance, with discounts for seniors and students. A January Jazz Fest “Flex Pass”, offered at $66, is available for all three concerts, which includes The Kathy Kosins Trio tribute “To the Ladies of Cool” on January 19, and The Hot Club of Detroit on Jan 26.
Tickets are available through the Centenary Stage Company box office at 715 Grand Avenue, open 1-5 p.m. Monday through Friday and two hours prior to each performance. Tickets may also be purchased online at www.centenarystageco.org or by calling the box office at 908-979-0900. The venue is about one hour west of Manhattan via U.S. 80.