The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Bowen’s concert ‘Jampact’

No programs. No set. No rules. This was the format of the Jampact concert Friday.

Jampact is made up of several Meadows faculty, including Dean Jose Bowen.

Bowen, who wore jeans and a red Meadows T-shirt, blew the crowd away during his piano solos. He was recently honored by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for his compositional work. The concert itself was mostly improvisational.

The four other members of Jampact were equally impressive. Trumpet player Akira Sato is currently director of Meadows Jazz Ensemble.

Jamal Mohamad, percussionist, is a percussion instructor and director of the World Music Ensemble at Meadows.

Kim Corbet, trombone and synthesizer, is an instructor of jazz and rock history classes at SMU.

While Buddy Mohmed, bass player and brother to Jamal Mohamad, isn’t part of the SMU faculty, his musical resume is just as good as the other members of the band.

The performance began with chaotic and random noise that eventually turned into an artistic collaboration of jazz. Bowen says they played mostly modal, free, fusion and world jazz with some swing and Latin jazz thrown in.

Like any improvisational jazz concert, the guys relied on each other to see where they were going next, constantly looking, signing and smiling to each other during the performance.

The concert continued as the men went back and forth between different instruments in their same genre.

Both Bowen and Corbet played the melodica (a wind blown miniature keyboard) and although some of the audience found it comical, they were both able to show off their musical abilities.

Corbet also enjoyed using his voice to add various sounds, including meowing, to the collaboration.

Bowen says they hoped to create the same intimate setting as one would find in a jazz club, but that would have made it difficult for some students to come.

“The nice thing about playing on campus is that everyone can come – there were kids there, which is cool.”

As Corbet describes, when he and Mohamad heard that Bowen was coming to the campus in the summer of 2006, they invited him to a jam session.

They later invited Sato but were still in need of a bass player. They called Mohamad’s brother and the band was complete.

This concert marked their first “gig,” Corbet says, although they’ve played at picnics at the Bath House Cultural Center.

Jampact has yet to record anything as a group, though each of the members has recordings with other groups that can be bought online.

They say they plan to record together eventually but are still unsure when and what to record.

Although this concert may have seemed a bit chaotic to some of the audience, Corbet clears it up: “I believe the most pure music is totally free, which may seem chaotic, but it’s not at all. It relies on countless hours of playing together based on years of artistic discipline.”

Future Jampact performances include the Dallas Museum of Art on Nov. 29 and the Bath House on Nov. 30.

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