Jazz Fest: swingin’ down to Barstow

Annual jazz festival: another “hit” for the Eau Claire community

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Lauren Spierings

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The Tator
September 18, 2019
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Jazz Fest: swingin’ down to Barstow

Valleybrook Church’s sign for Jazz Fest lit up the night.

Valleybrook Church’s sign for Jazz Fest lit up the night.

Photo by Lauren Spierings

Valleybrook Church’s sign for Jazz Fest lit up the night.

Photo by Lauren Spierings

Photo by Lauren Spierings

Valleybrook Church’s sign for Jazz Fest lit up the night.


While the sharp temperature was a spot of a treble for some of the attendees, many locals decided to swing by the 53rd annual Jazz Fest this past weekend for an evening of various types of jazz.

Although it had a slow start, attendance keyed up as the night continued and more performances took place, both on the street and within the shops.

Multiple acts took place in a trailer, called the Eau Claire-Stream, set up near E. Grand Avenue in the middle of the blocked-off area on Barstow Street — the main attraction of Jazz Fest.

“There was this fantastic musician,” Nolan Buss, a first-year business marketing and Spanish student, said. “He was doing a one-man band kind of show where he was recording instruments and then picking up another one, and he kept on playing more and more instruments, and then he sang over it.”

Besides the groups performing on Barstow Street, additional performances took place in the Pablo Center at the Confluence. Performances by the New York Voices and Grace Kelly took place inside.

Local businesses also took part in the weekend celebration, with scheduled performances occurring inside.

While some participating businesses, like Revival Records and The Plus, were within the four-block length of the festival, others like Volume One’s The Local Store and SHIFT Cyclery & Coffee Bar also participated.

“My favorite part was when we played cards and we were listening to jazz in the Acoustic Café,” Sam Panos, a first-year accounting and finance student, said. “It really brought a lot of the community together because people from everywhere came out, so it wasn’t just UW-Eau Claire students.”

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  • People wandered the streets during the Jazz Festival.

  • A lone musician played his trombone while leaning on a pillar.

  • The banners for this year’s Jazz Festival lined the street on the light poles.

  • The Eau Claire-Stream trailer being set up by volunteers for the coming performances.

  • A group of performers wandering the street.

  • A noisemaker stand set up in the Gray St. and Barstow St. intersection let children get involved in the sound.

  • Even adult attendees wanted to look at the noisemaker stand.

  • Attendees gathered around the food stands — this time they were grabbing pizza.

  • The CollECtive Choir performed for the crowd.

  • In a gathered circle of viewers, one dancer moved to the voices of the performers.

  • Two attendees also started dancing, with one of the Choir members taking notice.

  • The length of Revival Records was filled to watch the Residual Swing performance.

  • An audience member applauding the recent set of Residual Swing.

  • The jazz records in the store matched the festival.

  • Unknown performers moved with their instruments across the street.

  • Audience members joined hands to dance to the Choir’s music.

  • Reporters gathered around the Eau Claire-Stream to take photos

  • Young musicians carried their instruments as they walked down Barstow Street.

  • A line lead out of the door of Ramone’s and onto the street.

  • Valleybrook Church’s sign for Jazz Fest lit up the night.

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Spierings can be reached at [email protected]

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