A dream several years in the making is finally taking shape in Sherman. William Collins III of the Sherman Jazz Museum has been working with area jazz enthusiasts to start an organization that hopes to make Sherman a jazz festival destination for tourists.
The second Sherman Jazz Festival and the first put on by the group that goes by the name Jazz and More Society, or JAMS, will be held April 6 at Kidd-Key Auditorium in Sherman.
“In the last couple of months, we have formed a nonprofit organization in Sherman to present jazz concerts and other types of concerts in that field,” Collins said. “It is called the Jazz and More Society. We are a non-profit and people can produce tax deductible donations. We can present a jazz classic festival every year. This will be the first year. Last year, we brought Doc Severinsen but that was just pretty much me and Robert and Sherry Little. This year, we have created this organization and concert.”
This year’s event will again feature the One O’Clock Lab band from the University of North Texas. The featured performer will be Carl Fischer, who is currently the trumpet player for Billy Joel.
“Our plan is that every year, we will have this jazz festival on Saturday and Sunday that will be funded by this nonprofit organization,” Collins said. “We just formed (it) within the last couple of months.”
This year’s festival, titled Sherman Jazz Classic will be similar to the one last year. The three day event will begin on the first Friday evening of April with a free performance by Three River Jazz featuring Victoria Cook. The 7 p.m. show will be held at Old Iron Post. On Saturday, a free jazz clinic will be held at 3 p.m. at the jazz museum in Sherman.
Then Fischer and the UNT band will perform at 7 p.m. that night at Kidd-Key. Tickets for the concert range from $15-$25.
Sunday’s show will have a gospel spin with a brunch at Old Iron Post and music again provided by Three River Jazz and Cook.
“It will really be a whole weekend thing so that people can hear some jazz music,” Collins said.
More than just a dream, the idea that an area nonprofit organization that is run on private donations can be the source of this music festival is still a point of joy for Collins.
“We are excited about bringing some big name acts into the Sherman area,” he said. “I would love to have Harry Connick Jr. come some day and be an act. The tourism aspect would be awesome too. If we get some good donation, we can bring in anyone we want. We just need to get the public support.”
For more information on JAMS, visit http://www.Facebook.com/ShermanJams. Tickets for the April event can be purchased at http://www.Shermanjams.com.