Photo by Bazpix of The Sax Pack from the 2007 Berks Jazz Fest
By Val Vaccaro
On Saturday, March 24th at 2pm at the 2012 Boscov�s Berks Jazz Fest there should be a high-spirited concert with The Sax Pack featuring saxophonists Jeff Kashiwa, Kim Waters, and Steve Cole in the Crowne Plaza Reading hotel ballroom.
If you haven�t yet seen these three super-talented saxophonists together in concert, it should be a special treat. For the 2012 Boscov�s Berks Jazz Fest show, The Sax Pack will be supported by great musicians including keyboardist Bill Heller (a fellow member with Jeff Kashiwa in The Rippingtons), guitarist Gerey Johnson, bassist John Dillard, and drummer Frank �Third� Richardson.
As you may already suspect, the jazz music group�s name The Sax Pack seems inspired in part by the 1960�s Rat Pack with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Joey Bishop, Peter Lawford, and friends � i.e. having a cool attitude, debonair dress code, musical talent, and comedy-infused performances. The Sax Pack presents a fun, upbeat show mixing their personalities and brands of humor along the way, while their music touches hearts and inspires fans to get up from their seats to enjoy the musical celebration. Jeff Kashiwa, Kim Waters, and Steve Cole have a great musical and verbal rapport together.
The Sax Pack plays smooth jazz and cover tunes with influences of classic funk and R&B music.
The audience will get to hear original and cover songs from their 2008 debut CD The Sax Pack, such as �Fallin� For You,� �The World is A Ghetto,� �You Are My Starship,� and �Tequila� as well as smooth jazz originals from their 2009 sophomore CD The Pack is Back. The Sax Pack�s musical performances are sometimes deliberately melodramatic, but that is part of the tongue-in-cheek charm of it all.
The show may also include some new music from an upcoming group CD, as well as some signature songs from the saxophonists� individual releases such as Jeff Kashiwa�s 2009 CDs Back in the Day and The Very Best of Jeff Kashiwa, Steve Cole�s 2011 CD Moonlight (jazz and pop standards recorded with an acoustic rhythm section and full orchestra), or Kim Waters� 2011 CD This Heart of Mine (smooth jazz infused with soul and R&B).
Also, Jeff Kashiwa has an exciting new CD in the works tentatively titled Up! to be released this summer which features musical guests including guitarists Russ Freeman and Chuck Loeb, and keyboardists David Benoit and Tom Schuman (a member of Spyro Gyra). Jeff Kashiwa is also touring as a long-time member of the Grammy-nominated contemporary jazz group Russ Freeman and The Rippingtons (which is celebrating their 25th anniversary).
For concert tickets to The Sax Pack and other shows at the 2012 Boscov�s Berks Jazz Fest, see http://www.berksjazzfest.com/ticketedevents.htm