The David Leonhardt Trio Swings into Christmas

By Jewlina Matthews, Contributing Writer

The David Leonhard Trio stole College Hall stage Monday, November 23rd, 2015. The concert was a perfect way to end the semester’s concert series and lead into the holiday season. The trio, consisting of Mr. Leonhardt on piano, Eliot Zigmund on drums, and Matthews Parrish on bass, played flawlessly. The production of their music gave the impression the audience was listening to a recording.

Every member of the trio has a prestigious background and some have even played with big names in jazz. For instance, Leonhardt was the musical director for Jon Hendricks, a jazz vocalist. He spent twelve years freelancing music in New York City. His first jazz experience was playing piano for jazz educator Jamey Aebersold, who has created the best jazz patterns for warm ups to set students up for success.

Eliot Zigmund, the drummer of the trio, has been a professional musician for fifty years. Zigmund has recorded with Jazz legends including Vince Guaraldi and Bill Evans to name a few. Matthews Parrish, the bassist, has recorded with Regina Carter and Wynton Marsalis.

The concert began at 8 pm. The group played a variety of tunes ranging from covers of Elvis Presley and even some of Leonhardt’s originals. One of the originals,  “Another Kentucky Sunset,” was inspired by his hometown in Kentucky, a beautiful ballad evoking the nostalgia of autumn. The trio also included a number of George Gershwin tunes, as the group recently completed a Gershwin concert.

The concert was interrupted with a brief intermission for the audience members to have the chance to purchase CDs. Mr. Leonhardt brought a variety – a few of his CDs had mainly his originals on them, a few were entirely Gershwin CDs, while the most popular one was a Christmas jazz CD.

Overall The David Leonhardt Jazz played expressive music in a professional setting. The group made some jokes on stage too, giving the feeling that all of the members are good friends. On the program, David Leonhardt listed a mission for the audience to view, it says: “David Leonhardt’s passion is to bring the jazz and creative music experience to as many people in the world as he can in a way that allows them to be transported tow a higher plain of thought and emotion.”

Through the course of the concert, David Leonhardt and the Jazz trio produced a creative music experience for the audience of West Liberty to experience. I would not hesitate to see The David Leonhardt Jazz Trio again.