Several days ago, I went to LACMA’s, “Jazz In The Park”. At first, I didn’t know what to expect. Would there be a small crowd or an overwhelmingly large audience? Would people be listening attentively to the music, or would it simply provide the background noise for other conversation? Would there be a sophisticated and mature crowd? Would the free event attract people of all ages and backgrounds? I was certainly going to find out.
To my pleasant surprise, every age group, ethnicity, class, and nationality could be spotted in the audience for this casual concert. The long and narrow lawn of green grass extended its way back several hundred feet, providing the perfect spot to people watch, have a get together with friends and family, host a picnic, or soak in the music. Young children ran around on the grass where parents watched closely. Elderly couples sat in lawn chairs situated in one long row.
The Jazz Leaders, a sextet band based in Los Angeles, provided the music for the evening. Performing only original material, the band provided soothing, smooth, and soulful music. The musicians had a lot of charisma onstage which kept the audience’s attention during the show.
Many devoted listeners crowded in front of the stage to hear the full sound that resonated from the brass and horned instruments. My friends and I came to LACMA to take in Los Angeles’s local jazz and to get an idea of what kind of following the jazz community has. What we didn’t realize was how big of an event it would be.
After attending “Jazz In The Park,” I’ve definitely realized one quality about LA culture: it is an inclusive community. When you go to an exclusive club, or and invitation only event, yes, you might feel a bit excluded. Yet, if you choose to seek them out, you can always find something to appreciate from the ‘come one come all’ cultural gatherings that LA has to offer.