Swing City, Delmarva’s Big Band, will be back in Chestertown’s Fountain Park this Saturday, August 4, from 7:00 – 8:30 pm. Admission is free. Note that there is no rain location for this concert. In the event of rain, the concert will be rescheduled.
This thirty-five member group has become a crowd favorite with its arrangements of popular standards and swing tunes in the style of Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, and other legends of the big band era. The band repertoire also includes big band arrangements of more contemporary tunes. This Saturday’s set list will include several saxophone and trumpet solos as well as tunes such as “Getting Sentimental Over You,” “The Ides of Love, “God Bless the Child,” “Seranada,” and a special version of the song made famous by Frank Sinatra, “My Way.”
Swing City is certainly a living testimony to the abiding popularity of swing music. The group plays concerts all over the eastern U.S., with occasional ventures up to Canada.
Elmer Dill, founder and director of Swing City, led his first band while still in high school. He attended the University of Delaware, where he played with the university’s stage band, the Delmodians. After college, he joined the U.S. Navy and played in bands all over the world. Several other Swing City regulars share Dill’s military band background, and nearly a third are current or retired musical directors. Most of them live in the Delmarva area, though a few come from as far afield as western Maryland, Pennsylvania, or New Jersey. Members have ranged in age from students in their teens to musicians in their eighties.
Saturday’s program begins at 7 p.m. and will end at approximately 8:30. Admission is free. Audience members should bring something to sit on. Only limited seating is available. Note that there is no rain date. In case of rain, the concert will be re-scheduled. The next concert in the series will be part of Chestertown’s Legacy Day Festival on Saturday, Aug 18. The featured band will be Soulfied Village. The Legacy Day parade will start at 5:00 pm with Music and dancing in the street from 6:00 until approximately 10:30 pm. This year’s theme is The Integration Experience in Kent County Schools.
The Music in the Park series has brought a variety of musical experiences, including jazz, swing, bluegrass, klezmer, folk, gospel and more, to Kent County audiences since it began in the mid-1990s. The concerts are sponsored by the town of Chestertown with support from the Kent County Arts Council and many community contributors. To help make these free programs possible, send donations payable to the town of Chestertown and designated for “Music in the Park,” to 118 N. Cross St., Chestertown, MD 21620. Donations may also be made at the concert.