Welcome to the New Year with some trepidation as to the future of the Sierra Traditional Jazz Club:
As President of the Sierra Traditional Jazz Club, I feel it my duty to inform our fan base and others who really care about the future of the Club. If you know me at all, you know that I’m a “cockeyed optimist”, as the song goes. What I’m talking about is the future of our forty-four year old Jazz Club. I’ve belonged to this Club since the High Sierra Jazz Band first entered the scene in October, 1976, when the Club invited us to be House Band, once the founder, Leuder Olwein, left town to head another band, the Sunset Music Company, to tour Europe for the summer of ’76.
Our audiences for the last several years has dwindled to a very few diehard jazz fans. I’m not disparaging these great people, just simply stating the fact that there aren’t others like them in regular attendance. The fact of the matter is that if it weren’t for Jazzaffair, the Club could not function; isn’t this a bit of a twist, that the Club, which created the Festival is dependent on the Festival to keep it afloat, literally. The good news with all this rancor is that Jazzaffair is one of the most popular and successful festivals on the West Coast and possibly east to the Mississippi. All this to say, we need to come up with ideas to keep the Club functioning and functioning on its own, or at least breaking even.
We need to think back to our original purpose as a jazz club, which of course was to provide high quality Dixieland or Traditional Jazz on a monthly basis and make it possible for young musicians, mainly from local high schools and Community Colleges, to go to jazz camps during their summer vacations. It’s been tradition that Jazzaffair earns enough money to not only support the mother club, but to have enough money after Jazzaffair to send talented and deserving students to jazz camps.
Let’s work hard in any way positive to keep this wonderful Club up and running and as successful as possible. See you at Jazz! Stan H.