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It is fitting that Jacksonians voted The Vamps as this year’s Best Jazz Artist/Group, given that 2018 is also the ensemble’s 20th anniversary. These days, the band, which includes guitarist Barry Leach, vocalist-percussionist Adib Sabir, drummer Denny Burkes, bassist-keyboardist Bob Piecyzk, trumpeter Terry Miller, and saxophone players Kevin Lewis and Todd Bobo, plays more private events than club shows. However, Burkes says that only makes it a more special experience when they do share the stage together.

“The Vamps have always been a really free and easy spirit,” he says. “We’ve really only rehearsed together two or three times in the years we’ve been together, and when we get together, it’s more like a party. The seven of us are friends seeing each other, and I think people pick up on that.”

In addition to the band’s annual Dec. 22 Duling Hall performance, The Vamps are hoping to schedule an anniversary show in February at Martin’s Restaurant & Bar, the first venue to host the group 20 years ago. —Micah Smith

Address: http://www.thevamps.com/

Phone number: http://www.thevamps.com/contact

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