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Five Eastern jazz bands started their season on Thursday night with a 55-year-old tune that has been featured in various forms of media from airline commercials to movies.

“Come Fly with Me,” composed by Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen, is most famous for being the title track on Frank Sinatra’s 1958 album of the same name. The song was also the opening track for Eastern’s Jazz Lab Band.

Sarah Gorecki, a freshman music major with teacher certification, attended the concert to support her friends, but was also looking forward to a night of good music and people doing what they love.

“I grew up on Frank Sinatra,” Gorecki said. “Jazz is my favorite genre.”

After the group preformed the song, Paul Johnston, a jazz professor and the director of the Jazz Lab Band, introduced the tune and gave some background on it.

“We are excited you came to our first concert, we’re off to a good start and hope you’re up to ‘finding the flight’ for the rest of the show,” Johnston said.

The group played two more songs, “For Lena and Lennie” and “Maiden Voyage” before lending the stage to three jazz quintets.

Kurt Swan, a music major with a concentration in piano performance, performed as a part of the Birdland Quintet.

The group preformed “Groovin’” by J.J. Johnson.

“It is really bluesy, it swings and it is a toe-tapper,” Swan said. “It makes you want to dance even if you don’t want to.”

For Swan, the piano is more than his major—it is something that has been a part of his life for the past 16 years.

“There was one in my grandmother’s living room, I just wanted to make noise,” Swan said. “My grandmother says instead of just banging on it, like most kids, I was able pick out specific notes.”

Swan said his grandmother told his parents that he had talent and that he should take lessons.

“I haven’t stopped playing since,” he said.

But Swan is not the only musician in the family; in fact his brother Kyle Swan, a freshman music major, chose to focus on the drums.

Kyle performed with the Jazz Ensemble, which performed after the quintets.

Kurt said he enjoys being in the same department as his brother, but their relationship is now different than when they were growing up.

“We get to play together all the time, but no longer live together so we do get a break from each other now,” Kurt said. “It is no longer a big brother/little brother relationship, we learn from each other equally.”

The next jazz concert will be when the Jazz Ensemble performs with the Eastern Wind Symphony on Sept. 28.

Amy Wywialowski and Shirmeen Ahmad can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]