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Milford Beacon
  • Downtown Dixieland Band set to jam at Riverfront Farmers' Market

  • Sammy Seibert naturally stands out.
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  • Sammy Seibert naturally stands out.
    Seibert, 16, is the youngest member of the Downtown Dixieland Band, a talented ensemble of the Milford Community Band that dishes out ragtime and Dixieland music, led by 88-year-old MCB founder, Joe Lear.
    Many of Seibert's friends might think he's a nut for playing the old-timey Dixieland/ragtime music in a group with guys old enough to be his dad, if not his granddad. But once you hear the 16-year-old drummer strike his first note during DDB's concert at the Riverwalk Farmers' Market in Milford on Saturday, you'll notice his sharp skills suggest he's far from foolish.
    "I'm surrounded by people that are a lot better than me and that have been playing a lot longer," explained Seibert, of Milford, who thoughtfully added, "I guess it accelerates my experience a lot more than if I were with kids at my level and we were moving up together."
    'Fun to listen to'
    The DDB will perform approximately 50 Dixieland/ragtime standards, including Cobb and Jack Yelen's "Alabama Jubilee," Irving Berlin's "Alexander's Ragtime Band," Shelton Brooks' "Darktown Strutter's Ball" and Euday Bowman's "Twelfth Street Rag."
    Lear, who grew up in Texas and played Dixieland music with his buddies in high school, says he clings to the genre because "It's fun to listen to" and "it's fairly simple" to play. It also doesn't hurt that "audiences enjoy it," he added. Lear's not just saying that because he's partial to the genre. Truth be told, he says mixed crowds of young and old dug DDB when they gigged at Rehoboth Beach and Bethany Beach last year.
    There's also Seibert, a kid who knew nothing about Dixieland music until Lear introduced it to him two years ago. Now he enjoys playing in DDB more than MCB, a band he's been playing in a year longer than DDB.
    "It's so fun because…so much of it is improvised," Seibert said of Dixieland music. "I mean, usually I just make up whatever. I also think it's pretty cool because most kids my age don't really like it."
    IF YOU GO
    WHAT Downtown Dixieland Band in concert
    WHEN 10 a.m., Saturday
    WHERE Riverfront Farmers' Market, 7 S. Walnut St., Milford
    COST Free
    INFO milfordcommunityband.org

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