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Multilingual jazz and pop welcomes students to the quarter

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De Anza graduate and Jazz singer Miki Melton invited by DASB to serenade students with accompaniment as part of Welcome Week.

De Anza graduate and Jazz singer Miki Melton invited by DASB to serenade students with accompaniment as part of Welcome Week.

L.E. Ashley

L.E. Ashley

De Anza graduate and Jazz singer Miki Melton invited by DASB to serenade students with accompaniment as part of Welcome Week.

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De Anza students were treated to live jazz music by Miki Melton as part of De Anza’s Welcome week festivities.

Sheltered from the rain, students gathered inside the Hinson Campus Center for the performance.

Melton performed jazz and pop while accompanied by Lorenzo Farrell on electric organ and Terrence Brewer on guitar.

Melton came to the Bay Area from Tokyo, Japan. She transferred from De Anza in 2006 and went on to receive a Masters in Applied Linguistics from SJSU.

Melton sings in seven different languages, and her set included music from Frank Sinatra and Kyu Sakamoto. They entertained the crowd with top 100 billboard hits as well as Melton’s breezy scat singing and jazz improvisation.

Jay Um, 21, biology major, said the band’s music “matches the atmosphere.” Um plays the guitar and hopes that the students and faculty will come together to organize live music on a regular basis.

Dorra Lohas, 29, marketing major, came to eat her lunch, and enjoyed the jazz. She is “nervous about performing because of [her] English,” and was excited to hear Melton perform with her accent.

Melecia Navarro, EPOS Program Coordinator, came to meet her coworkers for lunch. She enjoyed the festive vibe that live music brings, and said, “there is something about live music that you can’t replicate with recorded music.”

Navarro pointed out that the event “captures the mood and the spirit of what the first week is all about, which is experiencing new things together.”

L.E. Ashley
De Anza graduate and Jazz singer Miki Melton invited by DASB to serenade students with accompaniment as part of Welcome Week.

Most of the audience interviewed had never heard the pop, jazz, and bossa nova standards before, but all agreed that they enjoyed the vibe the music created.

The De Anza Student Body hosts the Welcome Week Festivities on the first three days of every quarter, and co-runs the events with the Inter Club Council. According to La Donna Yumori-Kaku, College Life Advisor, the DASB’s goal was to introduce students to new types of music.

Melton’s singing created a cafe atmosphere for people eating, studying, socializing and watching soccer on the TV. She noted that the audience was more attentive when she played outside on the quad in previous years.

Melton ended her performance by saying De Anza is “one of the best community colleges in the U.S.”

Melton posts her performance schedule and connects with her fans on her Facebook page, @MikiJazzVocalist.

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