When legendary jazz pianist Dave Brubeck was asked if jazz was dead in a 1989 interview with The Christian Science Monitor, the musician quickly defended the genre’s viability, saying it was quintessential to the U.S. music scene, if not America itself.
“Jazz stands for freedom,” Brubeck was quoted in the report. “It’s supposed to be the voice of freedom: Get out there and improvise, and take chances, and don’t be a perfectionist — leave that to the classical musicians.”
That penchant for improvisation and embrace of risk-taking parallels the rise of the also uniquely American craft beer movement, among the early pioneers of which was Bell’s Brewery Inc. in Kalamazoo.
In a show of community support and its commitment to the arts, Bell’s partnered with the hometown Gilmore Keyboard Festival this year for a limited- release beer “made in the key of hops, barley and yeast.”
The Golden Ale clocks in at 5 percent alcohol by volume, and features a light straw color and low bitterness. Tasting notes for the one-off beer describe it as crisp, clean and balanced — the perfect complement to a celebration of the festival’s world-class music.
Available on draft and in six-packs of 12-ounce bottles, this beer only will be distributed in the Kalamazoo area to coincide with the Gilmore Keyboard Festival.