Chris Alvarado

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  • Tell us about yourself

    Drummer in New Braunfels, Texas and Asst. Band Director for THE MIGHTY UNICORN BAND.
    Chris: Well back in 2012, Jim Cullum came to our college, Texas Lutheran University, in Seguin, and he played this Frank Ticheli piece with our wind ensemble and traditional jazz band, like a four movement piece. He brought in the whole band. It was a great concert. I think that kind of hooked us both. So we kind of took to it and started playing some songs, and we really started in this gazebo in downtown Seguin. That’s where we practiced.

    Kris: When that concert happened, I was in the band behind [Jim], and he was out in the auditorium listening to the band. I’d never heard of the Jim Cullum Jazz Band and when they showed up. These guys were in their 60s and 70s, and they just shuffled up on stage. Me being this skeptical young guy, I was like “oh man,” and they opened up their cases real slow and then they sauntered up there and it was like “BOOM!” It was easy to tap your foot to, and it was exciting and we thought, why not? So we went to that gazebo. We had these printed out arrangements that were terrible—we had no idea what we were doing. Then two months later we started going out and watching Jim play. I think this was when his son bought Tucker’s Kozy Korner on Houston St. They were gonna take it over on January 1st 2013 and Cullum invited us down to listen.

    We had just had our first rehearsal ever, we didn’t know what we were doing! We went down there for the opening and we made the mistake of telling them that we had just come from rehearsal so they invited us to play. We went in there, and it was just a train wreck! He said there was a lot of work to be done.

    what do you wish people knew about new braunfels?

    THE MIGHTY UNICORN BAND, enough said.