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Guitar trio plays jazz extravaganza

The jazz trio, The Cat, the Hag, and the Longstreet, performed Nov. 30 in Morgan Auditorium. The band includes Sean Hagstrom, Roberto Catalano and Sean Longstreet. This is their second year playing at the University. The first piece was “The Maze,” from jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock’s first solo album, “Taking Off.” / photo by Stephanie Ball

The jazz trio, The Cat, the Hag, and the Longstreet, performed Nov. 30 in Morgan Auditorium. The band includes Sean Hagstrom, Roberto Catalano and Sean Longstreet. This is their second year playing at the University. The first piece was “The Maze,” from jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock’s first solo album, “Taking Off.” / photo by Stephanie Ball

Liz Ortiz
Staff Writer

After several reflective pieces, the audience came to life and snapped along as The Cat, the Hag, and the Longstreet played what they jokingly referred to as the Mediterranean “Pink Panther” theme song at their concert Nov. 30.

The trio, comprised of Roberto Catalano, an adjunct music professor at La Verne; Sean Hagstrom; and Sean Longstreet, a University of Redlands alumnus, entertained the crowd with their humor and music.

“Their concert began a little slow, but it became exciting once they began playing the ‘Pink Panther’ theme and encouraged the crowd to sing along,” Michael Botalla, a senior business administration major and concert attendee, said.

The Cat, the Hag, and the Longstreet’s concert indulged the crowd with Mediterranean inspired song selections.

When he talked about the French song, “The Lovers Sitting on the Park Benches,” Catalano said it was one of his favorite pieces to play because it is meditative and inspirational.

The concert was also unique in the fact that the musicians played both six and 12 string guitars. They played the 12 string guitars for the first half of the concert and switched to the six string guitars for the remainder.

“It was really interesting to see them play the 12 string guitars,” Botalla said.

“Those guitars allow you to harmonize more than a six string, which at times became a little overwhelming because all three of them were playing at once,” he said.

Initially, audience members seemed a little skeptical about the trio’s performance. The band began playing their first song, and they were out of tune and off rhythm with each other.

“I was a little disappointed with their playing at first,” Jonathan Cabrera, a University of La Verne alumnus and concert attendee, said.

“As the concert went on their playing was a lot better; I especially liked their meditative pieces,” he said.

The trio did not seem to mind that they made a mistake and started out on a bad note. They just smiled and laughed it off.

Their stage set up and relaxed stage presence gave the impression that they were simply having a jam session on stage.

“It was great to see a group on stage that was genuinely having fun with their performance,” Wesly Tan, a sophomore business major and concert attendee, said.

“A lot of musicians get tense and rarely interact with the crowd, so this was a nice change,” he said.

The group also made it a point to give each member a chance to show off their musical abilities and often ad-libbed guitar solos in each piece.

“When they were playing, you could tell they communicate through their guitar riffs and anticipate what the other players are going to do next. That takes a lot of talent and group trust,” Cabrera said.

Liz Ortiz can be reached at elizabeth.ortiz@laverne.edu.

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