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Kristin Korb appears at the University of Richmond's Camp Concert Hall Feb. 12 

Musical Feast is No Small Feat

There are singers, there are acoustic bassists, and then there's Kristin Korb, who appears at the University of Richmond's Camp Concert Hall Feb. 12. Combining the very different requirements of playing a massive stringed instrument and of singing jazz standards is no small feat. Except for a vacancy in her Billings, Mont., junior-high jazz chorus, she might have stayed with her original instrument — the guitar. "The band director said that the only opening was for electric bass," she remembers. "So I switched and loved the sound." She moved to upright bass in high school. "I've always been something of a tomboy and into sports," she confides. "With the upright you have to be athletic, to like the physical challenge. It takes muscle to play. I also like the supporting role — backing the other musicians, making them feel comfortable." Korb describes the Richmond program as a "multiple-course dinner." Great jazz drummer Carl Allen, " longtime sparring partner," and pianist Pamela York and L.A. saxophonist Ray Herman will complete the quartet. "We'll be playing some straight-ahead jazz, a bit of bebop and some gorgeous ballads; some vocal, some instrumental. It's all music that I love, and I love sharing with people. I have a great band, everyone solos, but the music comes first. I've learned that when you are honest with the music, the whole is more than the sum of the parts." And the audience's part is key. "The audience is an unsung part of the band," Korb says. "There is a continuum between the players onstage and the people who are listening. If they get involved, they can take you to a whole other level. "Playing is an act of joy for me. I want people to feel like they're just hanging out in a living room, to feel free to be involved." "It may be a concert hall," Korb says. "But it's your place, too."
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