Chase Garrett returns for Third Annual Blues & Boogie-Woogie Piano Stomp

BY DI STAFF | NOVEMBER 01, 2012 6:30 AM

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The Daily Iowan sat down with Iowa City native and boogie-woogie, blues, and swing pianist Chase Garrett to talk about his upcoming performance at the Englert. The Third-Annual Blues & Boogie-Woogie Piano Stomp will feature some of the most recognized leaders in blues and boogie-woogie piano from around the world. The showcase will begin at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Englert Theater, 221 E. Washington St. Admission is free for children 5 or younger, $30 general admission.

Daily Iowan: What makes this year’s Blues & Boogie-Woogie Piano Stomp different from the previous two?

Garrett: This year is more exciting to me, because I am implementing a swing element into my show. I’m bringing some horn players to play with me to have a more swing-oriented style. This year also has an all-European show besides me, including musicians Jean-Paul Amouroux of France, Julian Phillips of the UK, and Silvan Zingg of Switzerland.

DI: Why did you choose to add the swing style to your music this year?

Garrett: I have been getting very influenced by swing music for the past couple of months. I recently moved to New York, and I hope to someday have my own big band here, so I want people to see the direction I can go in. I wanted to express my feelings toward what I wanted to do in the future with this year’s show, especially with the horns I’m implementing.

DI: Now that you are living in New York, how long do you think you will continue to bring the piano stomp to Iowa City?

Garrett: When I first started doing this show, I put the annual in the title because I wanted to bring music to Iowa City that hasn’t been there before. I want to continue the concert as long as possible, but I also want to keep a close eye on whether people are interested or not. I think as long as I can and as long as people are interested, I will keep doing things in Iowa City, because it’s very important to keep culture around, and it will always have a special place in my heart.

DI: Where do you see yourself as a performer in the next five years?

Garrett: In my own eyes, I think I would like to see myself successful as a performer and a producer. I want to have my own big band and go off into the swing venture. But I also have a strong desire to produce and create music opportunities for people to perform in venues they might not be able to.

DI: What are you most looking forward to about the concert this weekend?

Garrett: I’m really glad to be a part of the Iowa City community for the night, and I encourage people to come and check it out. It’s going to be an amazing concert, and I’m super excited about it. There are going to be fantastic musicians who are coming from all around the world and country. No one will be able to recognize this music in the light it should be recognized unless they are almost forced to hear and see the music for themselves. What I would really like to do is create a Blues Night at the Apollo Theater in New York, because I’ve noticed there isn’t a huge blues scene here.

Third-Annual Blues & Boogie-Woogie Piano Stomp

When: 8 p.m. Saturday
Where: Englert Theater, 221 E. Washington
Admission: $30

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