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Exciting 17 Piece Big Band Led by Trumpet Great Playing Straight Ahead Jazz Charts of West Coast Jazz History.

Carl Saunders 17 piece be-bop big band One of Southern California’s hottest jazz big bands performing exceptional arrangements of straight-ahead jazz.

Trumpet virtuoso, composer, bandleader, and educator, Carl Saunders, leads a talented Southern California 17-Piece Big Band, playing straight ahead Be-Bop Jazz Music. The trumpet section includes Carl Saunders, Jeff Bunnell, Chad Willis, Ron Stout, and Jonathan Dane. The trombone section includes Scott Whitfield, Ido Mushulan, Eric Hughes, and Craig Gosnell. The saxophone section includes Bruce Babad, Kirsten Edkins, Jerry Pinter, Rob Lockhart, and Brian Williams. The rhythm section includes Bernie Dressel on drums, Dave Stone on bass, and Sam Hirsh on piano.

Trumpet master, Carl Saunders has appeared on over 125 recordings and worked with Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich, Clare Fischer, Bobby Sherwood, Ella Fitzgrerald, Mel Torme, Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, Paul Anka, Robert Goulet, Si Zentner, Harry James, Maynard Ferguson, Benny Goodman, Charlie Barnett, Bill Holman, John Williams, Bob Florence, Johnny Mandel, Gerald Wilson, Phil Norman, Dave Pell, and numerous others. Saunders defines Jazz as a combination of intellectual funk and hypnotic swinging. Saunders plays with a warm tone and long, melodic lines, and endless, creatives ideas. Saunders’ solos are specular, continuous, flowing, breathtaking, stunning, delicately swinging, and brilliant.

Jeff Bunnell is a busy studio studio trumpeter, arranger, orchestrator, and conductor, for T.V. and Film. Bunnell has played with dozens of well known jazz artists and popular vocalists, has published 3 trumpet books, and appeared on over 50 recordings. Chad Willis graduated from U.S.C. and University of North Texas with music degrees, and has played in the famed One O’Clock Lab Band, in symphony orchestras, with wind symphonies, brass quintets, chamber ensembles, The Dallas Brass, Lyle Lovett’s Big band, various Jazz and Classical groups, and over 75 different groups in all. Willis is a Professor of Music at Fullerton College. Ron Stout has performed/recorded with over 100 Jazz groups, big bands, vocalists, R&B, and Soul groups. Stout teaches Jazz Trumpet at Cal State University, Long Beach, and is a talented Southern California native. Jonathan Dane attended University of North Texas and The Dick Grove School of Music, and has performed with many well known jazz bands and vocalists. Dane is a talented trumpeter, composer, and vocalist.

Trombonist Scott Whitfield composes, arranges, and sings and has worked with the big bands of Toshiko Akyoshi, Johnny Mandel, Clare Fischer, Bill Holman, Bob Florence, and his own jazz orchestra. Whitfield has appeared on over 60 recordings with many jazz greats, Broadway stars, and vocalists, and received a music degree from North Texas State. Whitfield has taught at Rutgers University, San Jose State, and Cal State Northridge. Ido Mushulan is a graduate of The Berklee College of Music and studied and received a Masters degree at U.C.L.A.’s Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. Mushulan has performed trombone with dozens of jazz artists at festivals, shows, and on Grammy winning and nominated recordings Billy Childs and John Beasley. Eric Hughes has performed/recorded with dozens of jazz and pop artists, bands, and on notable T.V. and Film soundtracks. Hughes studied with trombone great Bill Watrous at U.S.C. and is active on the L.A. music scene.
Craig Gosnell received 2 music degrees from University of Northern Colorado and his Doctorate from The University of Miami. Gosnell has performed with well known jazz bands, symphony orchestras, T.V. programs, and motion picture soundtracks. Gosnell has played trombone with over 100 pop and jazz vocalists and groups.

Saxophonist Bruce Babad received The Louis Armstrong Award in high school for most outstanding musician, and received music degrees from Central Washington University, and Cal State Long Beach Babad has recorded 4 albums with Luther Hughes’ Cannonball/Coltrane Project, and as a leader recorded a tribute album of the music of the great Paul Desmond. Babad has performed with jazz, blues, pop, and soul greats, including the Grammy nominated Bill Holman Big Band. Babad has performed on over 75 recordings, commercials, T.V. and movie soundtracks. Babad teaches at Biola College, and Fullerton College.

Kirsten Edkins plays saxophone on NBC’s “The Voice”, with vocalist Seth McFarlane, and with the Bill Holman Big band. Edkins studied with saxophonists Walt Weiskopf, Ray Ricker, and Bob Sheppard, and is a graduate of Eastman School of Music in N.Y.. Edkins has performed with jazz, pop, and soul artists in L.A., recorded one album as a leader, and teaches music at The Pasadena Conservatory of Music, and at Occidental College.

Jerry Pinter has worked with Woody Herman, Stan Kenton, Jack Sheldon, Phil Woods, and over 100 notable jazz, blues, and soul artists in Southern California and across the country, at festivals, and prestigious venues. Pinter has appeared on over 60 recordings, teaches music at Saddleback College, and has worked extensively with the American Jazz Institute’s/Mark Masters Ensemble. Rob Lockhart studied at Banff School and received a jazz degree from Eastman School of Music. Lockhart has worked with Woody Herman, Doc Severinsen, Joe LaBarbera, numerous jazz artists, classical symphony orchestras, for T.V. and Film, and has appeared on 9 recordings.

Brian Williams has performed/recorded with the jazz big bands of Bud Shank, Mike Barone, Tom Kubis, Bill Holman, The American Jazz Institute’s/Mark Masters Ensemble and is a longtime member of the Disneyland Band.

Drummer Bernie Dressel has worked with multi Grammy Award winning artists, including The Brian Seltzer Orchestra, The Gordon Goodwin Big Phat Band, and made 2 recordings with his own big band. Dressel is a graduate of Eastman School of Music, and has appeared on over 150 T.V., movie, jazz, and pop soundtracks, including multiple episodes of Star Trek shows.

Bassist Dave Stone recorded with Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Lindas Ronstadt, Barry Manilow, Neil Diamond, Natalie Cole, Jennifer Warnes, Whitney Houston, Paul McCartney, Brian Wilson, Nancy Wilson, Debbie Boone, Bobby Vinton, and has worked with various jazz bands and artists, at festivals, Broadway shows, Disneyland, on movies and T.V. shows, and on a dream come true, with Andre and Sandra Crouch in the movie, The Color Purple.

Pianist Sam Hirsh has played in the L.A. area, on the west coast, in Asia, and South America. Hirsh studied with pianists Russ Ferrante, Otmaro Ruiz, and Alan Pasqua, and graduated from U.S.C. School of Music. Hirsh has worked with The Bill Holman Big Band, Mellisa Morgan, Henry Franklin, Carl Saunders, Gilbert Castellanos, Roy McCurdy, Kenny G and others over the last decade. Hirsh teaches music at The Slauson Learning Center in Inglewood, Ca., and for The Quincy Jones Jazz Summer Camp. Hirsh has a new recording to be released in February, 2020.

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