Chill out with ‘Jazz in July,’ at the Morristown & Township Library, July 13 & 20

'Jazz in July' drew a good crowd at the Morristown & Twp. Library, July 14, 2017. Photo by Kevin Coughlin
'Jazz in July' drew a good crowd at the Morristown & Twp. Library, July 14, 2017. Photo by Kevin Coughlin
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By Carly Cannavina

Craving some smooth live music in a relaxed setting? The event you’re looking for might be just around the corner.

Jazz in July returns to the Morristown & Morris Township Library with concerts on Friday, July 13, 2018, and Friday, July 20.

Tom Artin, Brian Nalepka, Randy Reinhart, John Halsey and Joe Licari at 'Jazz in July' at the Morristown & Twp. Library, July 14, 2017. Photo by Kevin Coughlin
Tom Artin, Brian Nalepka, Randy Reinhart, John Halsey and Joe Licari at ‘Jazz in July’ at the Morristown & Twp. Library, July 14, 2017. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

“It’s a very informal, casual evening. No stress… everyone’s able to just relax and enjoy it,” said David Humm, the drummer for both ensembles.

These two-hour shows start at 7 pm, in the library’s media wing. Tickets are $20 at the door each night, and refreshments will be served inside. A cash-only bar also will stay open until 8:30 pm.

This is the 14th year for the summer series. Chad Leinaweaver, the library’s director, said he anticipates 75- to 100 attendees per show.

On the 13th, musicians will pay tribute to Dixieland jazz— a big-band style born in New Orleans. Humm will be joined by Tom Artin on trombone, Joe Licari on clarinet, John Halsey on piano, Randi Reinhart on cornet (a short, wide brass instrument similar to the trumpet), and Brian Nalepka on bass.

David Humm drums at 'Jazz in July' at the Morristown & Twp. Library, July 14, 2017. Photo by Kevin Coughlin
David Humm drums at ‘Jazz in July’ at the Morristown & Twp. Library, July 14, 2017. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

On the 20th, the program will feature favorites from the “American songbook” — covers of hits by Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong and other classic artists. This lineup includes Bill Moring on bass, Bob McHugh on piano and Tony Signa on saxophone and flute, with a special guest vocal performance by Bill Robinson.

Leinaweaver credits Humm and his contemporaries for the success of Jazz in July.

Assembled specifically for this event each year from a circle of local musicians, these groups are familiar enough so “they have a little bit of a following. We always seem to have people who are anxious to welcome them back,” said Leinaweaver, who plays guitar in his church band.

Jazz in July 2018AdHumm said he has performed in different combinations and venues with all the Jazz in July players over the years.

He especially appreciates how the library enables audience members to easily interact with musicians during intermission or after the show, enhancing everyone’s experience, he said.

Sponsored by Friends of the Morristown & Morris Township Library, the concerts benefit upkeep and improvement of the facility, at One Miller Road in Morristown.

Carly Cannavina, Morristown High School class of ’18, will study English at George Washington University in the fall.

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