Stockton feels the BEAT


Simon Rowe Quartet soothes the soul with jazz at Valley Brew

The atmosphere at Stockton’s newest jazz scene was mellow. A hint of excitement filled the air on Valentine’s Day.

The lights were dimmed, but candles flickered. A soothing jazz track played in the background.

The standing-room only crowd slightly opened up as members of the live band prepared to perform.

Welcome to Take 5: Jazz at the Brew, a live music club now open at Valley Brew off the Miracle Mile.

The club has a unique connection to the Delta campus, as jazz director Brian Kendrick plays drums in two of the bands, including the Simon Rowe Quartet (SRQ), which played for the Feb. 14 grand opening.

“Take 5 is a welcoming place for any age,” Kendrick said. “It is important to have a cross pollination between the different age groups.”

And cross-pollinated it was, with a blend of age and ethnicity.

Simon Rowe, director of Brubeck Institute and pianist for SRQ said it was such a “thrill to have so many community members come out to celebrate.”

The quartet played an assortment of love songs, telling a story of love found, lost and redeemed.

“It’s been wonderful seeing all of the support for the first night,”said Patrick Langham, saxophonist and director of jazz studies at the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music. “We need to keep spreading the word because I think there are a lot of people that would love to be here who weren’t here tonight.”

The jazz club will feature one of three groups twice a week.

Those groups are the SRQ, the Patrick Langham Group (PLG) and the Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet (BIJQ).

Kendrick, Langham and Rowe’s union started long before the development of the jazz club.

“The alliance between the University of the Pacific and Delta College is really important,” Kendrick explains.

“Delta’s jazz program has received a lot of support from the UOP Conservatory of music, and more and more of [Delta] students are transferring to the conservatory.”

Kendrick said “supporting each other” is really important.

That said, Take 5: Jazz at the Brew’s opening night was a success.

With live jazz and a variety of food and beverages the restaurant proves to be a place the community will enjoy.

“I don’t play music to be famous,” Kendrick said. “I do it to express my love for humanity.”

With a slight shrug of the shoulders and a small smile Kendrick adds, “[And] people like to hear live music.”

Take 5: Jazz at the Brew will be performing live jazz on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7 p.m.

The cover charge is $10 for the public and $5 for students with school identification.