Baritone saxophonist Alex Goese-Goble will be the lone representative from Juneau-Douglas High School in the 2004 Sitka Jazz Festival's All-Alaska Honor Jazz Festival, Thursday-Saturday, Feb. 19-21. But even if his demo CD wasn't chosen, as it was from entries around the state, he'd still attend.
"It's not something that you really want to pass up," said Goese-Goble, 18, a senior. "You can learn a lot from it. The people that are there are famous, and I don't know how they get them."
This weekend's festival includes performances from Freddy Cole (brother of Nat "King" Cole), Israeli-born pianist Alon Yavnai, Cuban alto saxophonist Paquito D'Rivera, trumpeter Bob Athayde, double bass player John Clayton and The Greatlanders, the United States Air Force Band of the Pacific's 14-piece jazz band and the Wrangell and Ketchikan high school jazz bands. All the guest artists will be teaching workshops for high school students from around the state.
Goese-Goble is particularly excited to meet Cuban alto saxophonist Paquito D'Rivera, a five-time Grammy winner.
"It should be good to learn from him, just because he's a saxophonist," Goese-Goble said.
A complete festival schedule and more information is available at www.sitkajazzfestival.com.
The festival has been held since 1996, but this is the first year of the All-Alaska Honor Jazz showcase. Goese-Goble had to submit a CD of improvisational work and examples of several different jazz styles.
Goese-Goble will perform on three songs during the Sitka Jazz Festival Saturday Concert, 7 p.m. Saturday night. He will play baritone saxophone on two and bass clarinet on one.
He took up bass clarinet a few years ago to play in school musicals.
"I love to play music and I especially love to play jazz," Goese-Goble said. "If I get a chance to play any instrument and learn to do something, then it's all for the good of learning."
Goese-Goble plans to attend University of Alaska Southeast in the fall, study toward a bachelor's degree in education, then head to University of Alaska Fairbanks to study music. He's an apprentice, repairing instruments, at Juneau Brass and Winds.