“We’re trying to give a different scene to El Paso,” spoke EPCC Campus Life Representative Yadira Corral at the annual Jazz at Sunset concert.
Corral continued, “There’s a lot of good musicians here in town, but a lot of times they don’t have a space to showcase their skills, so that’s what we do.”
El Paso Community College hosted the event on Sept. 4 at the Valle Verde campus. This concert is just one event in a series of many honoring the 50th anniversary of the college.
The concert was a free event and was open to the public and featured local talents such as the Frank Zona group, the Ruben Gutierrez Quintet and Azucar as well as the Michael Herndon Group.
Headlining the event was Emmy Nominated Guitarist Grant Geissman from Los Angeles and his special guest, saxophonist Doug Webb.
Refreshments for the concert were provided by a number of clubs here at EPCC, as means of fundraising for their own upcoming events and activities.
“We’re fundraising for Nationals and also to promote our team so people know we exist,” explained Nitram Torres from EPCC’s cheer club “Nationals is a pretty big thing because we’re the only El Paso college that goes.”
STEM Advisor Jesusita Ibarra shared similar thoughts on being able to represent her club at the concert.
“We’re usually doing fundraising activities to support our students so we can travel to conferences,” stated Ibarra “and build connections for them by going to different plants and companies and locations nationally and internationally.”
While all of the EPCC clubs that attended were more than happy to get their name out there, the Jazz and the view of the Sunset were really the stars of the show.
When asked what Jazz means to her, theater teacher and local singer songwriter Talia Leilani explained, “Basically it hijacks my nervous system, gives me a blood transplant infused with venom, and brings me so much happiness that it’s ridiculous and disgusting, but I love it.”
One concert-goer even detailed how she happened upon the event, “It was completely random. I heard the announcement on and I love jazz and I live right down the street, so I came totally on a whim.”
From the smooth crooning of Monica Gutierrez, the female vocalist of the Ruben Gutierrez Quintet, overtop Fred Astaire’s “Cheek to Cheek”, to the EPCC faculty packed Azucar performing more rock-influenced songs such as José José’s “Una Mañana”, the Jazz was never lost that day.