The Justin Meyer Quintet at the Concord Museum

Justin Meyer Quintet

“Music is liquid architecture; architecture is frozen music,” said German author and statesman Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. On March 13th, The Concord Museum and the Concord Conservatory of Music collaborate in a notable demonstration of that link. The museum hosts CCM faculty member Justin Meyer’s Swing Quintet to accompany its exhibit Middlesex County Modern, which runs through March 20, 2016.

 “At CCM, we are always looking for new ways to collaborate with other organizations in the community and the museum’s exhibition Middlesex County Modern naturally dovetailed with swing music, the focus of Justin’s group,” says Kate Yoder, executive director and founder of CCM. The quintet will perform music by Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, George Gershwin, and other important swing-era composers.

Middlesex County Modern, which has been on exhibit at the Concord Museum since October 9, 2015, examines modern architecture in the Concord region. The exhibit illustrates the impact of modern architecture on design, culture, and everyday life in this region.

Alongside the architectural movement of modernism, the musical swing era, roughly from 1935-1946, marked the height of the swing movement in America. A strong rhythm section formed the core of the swing band, accompanied by tightly arranged horns and woodwind sections. Soloists would improvise over the anchoring rhythm section, leading to songs which were both danceable and intricate.

Adding groundbreaking music from the same historical period as modern architecture brings another dimension to an already superb exhibit, and CCM is well positioned to add that element. Yoder says, “Our faculty has the breadth and talent to make this a special collaboration and we’re looking forward to the pairing of more music and art in the future.  I encourage everyone to come out, spend some time with the exhibit, and listen to musicians at the top of their art.”

The Justin Meyer Swing Quintet is made up of some of New England’s finest jazz luminaries. Meyer plays bass, Billy Novick plays sax and clarinet, Dave Whitney is on trumpet, Jon Wheatley is the guitarist, and Phil McGowan is the drummer. Their pedigrees include stints with Leon Redbone, Duke Romillard, Doc Cheatham, Vance Gilbert, Diana Krall, the New Black Eagle Jazz Band, Jerry Bergonzi, and many others.

Tickets for the concert are $25 for nonmembers, $20 for members, and are available online (, at the door, or by phone at (978)-369-9763.  For more information on this collaborative event, please visit, or