Latin-themed concert to welcome back Spring Breakers

The Hep Cats have organized a second “Music with Latin Flavor,” to welcome people back from Spring Break. (left to right) Jim Beaty, bass player, Robert Damm, percussionist, and Doug Thomas, saxophone. (Submitted photo)
Staff Writer

Local musicians are planning a free concert titled "Music with Latin Flavor II" to welcome Spring Breakers back to school and promote musical diversity in Starkville.

The successor to one that was performed in 2014. Robert Damm, a professor of music at Mississippi State University and Director of Music Education Partnerships, organized the concert with help from his jazz trio, the Hep Cats.

"We'll be swinging back from Spring Break this Monday, and I hope that people will come out and enjoy the music," Damm said.

Damm said he saw a need for more diversity in the live music in Starkville.

"The audience seemed to appreciate it, so we thought we could do it again," Damm said. "All of us in the band are looking forward to doing this concert and I hope the audience will have as much fun as we will."

Damm started researching the history of Latin American music, then he and fellow musicians arranged and rehearsed the music. Songs range from W.C. Handy's 1914 "St. Louis Blues" to Ricky Martin's 1999 "Livin' la Vida Loca."

The free concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, March 20, at the Bettersworth Auditorium in Lee Hall on campus.