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Guest soloist lends two different voices
Trumpeter will also sing at winter symphony concert
The GSO welcomes Joe Gransden and the GSO big band ensemble for the indoor picnic event. - photo by For The Times

Winter Picnic Pops & Dance
What: Gainesville Symphony Orchestra featuring special guest Joe Gransden
When: Doors open at 6 p.m., show at 7:30 p.m., Saturday
Where: Georgia Mountains Center, 301 Main St., Gainesville
How much: $30
More info: 770-532-5727 or

The Gainesville Symphony Orchestra will continue with this year’s theme of Music that Sings with Picnic Pops & Dance on Saturday.

The GSO welcomes Joe Gransden and the GSO big band ensemble for the indoor picnic event.

"It is an indoor picnic pops; it’s a dinner and dance," said Gregory Pritchard, GSO conductor. "So there is a dance floor available ... we’ll be playing jazz and swing music."

Gransden will be the featured performer, Pritchard said, who will be doing double duty by both singing and playing his trumpet.

Originally from New York, Gransden recently recorded an album with Kenny G, which Pritchard says sounds similar to Frank Sinatra.

"He’s really a great showman and instantly builds a rapport with the crowd, and it’s really an enjoyable evening as you get to learn more about Joe as the concert unfolds," Pritchard said. "He’s got kind of a Frank Sinatra-type voice, just very mellow and really nice to listen to."

Gransden said he has a lot planned for the 16-piece big band show this weekend.

"We’re doing a lot of danceable jazz standards from the song books of Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Count Basie, Ray Charles," he said.

One of Gransden’s special musical techniques is when he plays the trumpet and sings during the same piece, which he says isn’t hard at all.

"I sing a little bit and then I pick up the trumpet, play the trumpet and then sing some more," he said.

Tickets are still available for table or balcony seating.