The Arrowsmith Big Band is returning to Georgia Straight Jazz Society at the Avalanche Bar & Grill on Oct. 26.

Volume turned up for Thursday night jazz

It’s time to turn the volume up a few notches as we return to big band music, after seven season-opening weeks with smaller bands.

The fabled 16-member Arrowsmith Big Band is delighted to be returning to Georgia Straight Jazz Society at the Avalanche Bar & Grill on Oct. 26, with a show starting at 7:30 p.m.

The band, arguably the finest on Vancouver Island, is based in Oceanside, and has among its members some of the best jazz players on the Central Island. Soloists include Oceanside players Claudio Fantinato (alto and soprano sax) and Dave Stewart (trumpet), as well as Nanaimo’s Greg Bush (trumpet) and Dave Klinger (piano).

Originally formed more than 40 years ago, the band has enjoyed several incarnations over the years. For the last 14 years, the band has focused on big band jazz from established and emerging arrangers.

For this visit to the Thursday Night Jazz at the Av, the band has selected charts in a wide variety of styles, from gentle big band ballads to driving swing. They’ve created a program ranging from Miles Davis’ All Blues, to the Beatles’ Blackbird. Songs that will be performed have many notable jazz arrangers such as Phil Dwyer, Mark Taylor and Dave Barduhn

The band always looks forward to performances in Courtenay, almost as much as we anticipate them.

Look forward to a great evening of big band jazz, in a convivial atmosphere. If you’ve never experienced Thursday Night Jazz, don’t be shy: come on down and receive a warm welcome from music fans of like mind. If you have teenagers who would like to experience live jazz music, please bring them with you; the Avalanche changed its licence to allow a younger audience to appreciate the music too.

Admission is $10 for society members, $12 for non-members. For more information about the society and its 2017-18 season, please visit us at or follow us on Facebook.

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