Guest Artist Announced!
Trombonist and composer Steve Wiest will be headlining the Fountain City Jazz Festival! Mr. Wiest has also been commissioned to compose a piece for the De Soto HS Jazz Ensemble! You can read more about Mr. Wiest below.
2019 FCJF Soloist
Guest Artist- Steve Wiest
"On his debut album as a leader (Excalibur, The Steve Wiest Big Band), he demonstrates his mastery of his instrument as well as his virtuosity and expansive imagination as a composer and arranger. Although the writing is sophisticated, it's always tuneful and inviting."
Multiple Grammy-nominated jazz composer and trombonist Steve Wiest is known world-wide for his fresh cutting edge writing as well as his extroverted virtuoso trombone playing. With a zeal for finding fresh ingredients for his muse, Steve is a true multi-genre persona. As a recording artist, composer-arranger, science fiction author, cartoonist, and educator Wiest is at home with many different and diverse areas of creative endeavor.
His path to recognition began with a four-year stint as trombonist and composer with Maynard Ferguson. During this period Steve appeared on two Ferguson projects (Storm and Live from San Francisco) a video project (The Playboy Jazz Festival) and penned a number of works for Maynard including South 21st Shuffle. His YouTube solo on Denis DiBlasio's arrangement of Don't Stop from this era has been described as one of the most exciting of its kind on the Internet.
After leaving the Ferguson band in 1985, Wiest went on to complete a master's in jazz studies at The University of North Texas. During his time at UNT in the 1980s, Steve wrote for and performed on seven different recordings with Neil Slater's One O'Clock Lab Band.
Upon leaving UNT and spending two years as Assistant Director of Jazz Studies at The University of Texas at Arlington, Wiest began a 17-year tenure as Director of Jazz Studies and trombone at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. During these years Steve began a long and accomplished career as a clinician-guest artist while becoming a regular with The Doc Severinsen Big Band. Working with greats such as Eugene "Snooky" Young, Conte Candoli and Ernie Watts on Doc's band during this period while continuing to write music for Maynard Ferguson helped to shape Wiest's future endeavors.
In 2006, Steve released his first recording as a leader; Excalibur: The Steve Wiest Big Bandto critical acclaim. A unique modern jazz project for large ensemble, Excalibur was described by jazz great Bob Mintzer: "Steve's music is rich with color, textures, and lots of interesting twists and turns. Through utilizing his various influences on this project, Steve has really learned how to 'spin a tale' musically. I very much enjoyed listening to each piece to see where it would go next. He managed to truly develop each idea to the fullest, to the point where it would spill over to the next section out of necessity. As a result of Steve producing this fine body of work, he has emerged as an articulate arranger and composer with a developing distinct voice of his own."
Wiest followed Excalibur up with a 2007 Grammy nomination for his arrangement of Besame Mucho on Maynard Ferguson's final CD The One and Only . 2008 saw the release of another critically acclaimed project titled: Out of the New; The Steve Wiest Quintet which featured nine jazz re-imaginings of modern pop tunes.
Joining the faculty at The University of North Texas in 2007 first as professor of jazz composition, then as director of the six-time Grammy-nominated One O'Clock Lab Band®, Steve has firmly established himself as an important voice in jazz education as well. During his first year as director of The One O'Clock, their recording Lab 2009 was Grammy-nominated for Best Large Jazz Ensemble and Wiest's original Ice-Nine garnered a nomination for Best Instrumental Composition. After producing and directing six successful CDs for the band and touring the US, UK and Thailand with the group, Steve moved to Denver to join the Jazz Studies Faculty at The University of Denver's Lamont School of Music.
As Coordinator of the 21st Century Music Initiative at Lamont, Steve is thrilled to put his love for all things creative into a wonderfully fertile educational environment. Directing the new ensemble The Symposium which combines modern jazz sensibilities with an eclectic instrumentation as well as developing new courses that reflect the landscape of the arts in the 21st Century while also teaching classic jazz language classes, Wiest is enjoying all of the resources and opportunities that Lamont has to offer.
Steve Wiest's trombone (also called "Excalibur") was designed exclusively for him by Christan Griego of Edwards Instruments. Wiest also plays Griego Mouthpieces, specifically the Griego-Steve Wiest model. Steve's compositions are published via Walrus Music, UNC Jazz Press, and Kendor Music.
Wiest's new science fiction novel The Dover Stone is now available on Amazon.com. This is the book that is the programmatic fuel for his new project with ArtistShare: Concerto for Folded Space which consists of ten pieces featuring Wiest and The Eclectric Band with guest artists Jimmy Pankow,Keith Howland and Jason Scheff of the super group Chicago as well as The Maniacal 4 (plus Jon Gauer) Arlington Jones and Bob Mintzer.
Continuing a diverse career as a leader, guest artist, composer, cartoonist, author and educator, Steve Wiest makes his home with his family in Denver, CO.
Taken from the Lamont School of Music Website.
Rock Hall of Fame
The DHS Jazz Ensemble put on an incredible performance with an encore on stage inside the hall! The band jammed for 45 minutes receiving roars from the crowd.
The Symphonic Band played at the base of the Science Center with Lake Erie in the background. The Symphonic Band performed Aztec by Gary Gackstatter, Memories composed by senior band member Gavin Luther, and closed with SeaGate Overture by James Swearingen.
The band did a phenomenal job on all three pieces. I have to say it is an incredibly overwhelming to watch your kids excel and achieve in public. I enjoy watching my students become independent musicians and watching a student composer conduct his piece got me choked up a bit.
To our Chaperones and families that traveled with us: You all rock and our wonderful people!
To the HS Band, thank you! Taking 60 + people around the country can be stressful, but you guys rock EVERY SINGLE TRIP! People kept coming up to me and complimenting your performances, behavior, and your actions.
The performance at the science center was awesome for so many reasons. Bystanders were stopping and bringing their small children up to watch and look at our band. Seeing the wonder in the eyes of so many young people was very moving.
To see more updates and pics of the trip head over to the new Student Newsletter section and view a student created update on the trip.
Take a look at these fine establishments that have shown their support to our program in some way over the years!
The 1st Annual Fountain City Jazz Festival will be held at De Soto Senior High School in De Soto, MO on March 24th, 2018. Our goal for this non competitive festival is to provide the premier educational event for students and directors. The festival will give each band 30 minutes on stage in our new auditorium for a performance followed up by a personalized clinic for each band with one of our judges. We have some incredible Jazz clinicians this year that will be providing comments and clinics throughout the day. The goal will be to provide a performance opportunity to Jazz bands and then offer directors and students a clinic to help improve their performance, understanding of Jazz, confidence. The focus of the festival is not on ratings or trophies, but more on Jazz education and providing support to improve.
Next year's date has been set for 3/23/19
Our evening concert is set to begin at 6pm. Ticket prices for this concert will be $3 for adults. Students and directors enter free. This year's guest artist will be tenor saxophonist Austin Farnam! The evening concert will open with the Missouri Big Band.
Panel of Clinicians
Tony Dipasquale- Belleville Public School District 118
Shawn Harrel- Lee's Summit R-7
Rob Babel-Fort Zumwalt North, Director of Bands
Keith Moyer-Fort Zumwalt West, Director of Bands
Support for the Fountain City Jazz Festival has been provided by Pine Mountain Country Coffee House. The wonderful family at Pine Mountain have offered to house our judges and guest artist for the festival. Their support of this endeavor is greatly appreciated by the De Soto Bands, judges, and community!
On December 2, 2017, over 1400 students from across Missouri met at Hickman High School in Columbia to audition for the honor of participating in the top honor band in the state. Only 109 students are accepted into this elite ensemble. De Soto took five students to State Band auditions. Senior Morgan Solomon has earned a spot in the Missouri All-State Band and will be representing De Soto High School in the band's performance. The band will meet, rehearse, and perform at the Missouri Music Educators Association Conference held January 24th through January 27, 2018, at Tan-Tar-A Resort, Lake of the Ozarks.
The only performance of the Missouri All-State Band will be at 12:30 pm, January 27th, 2018 in the Grand Salon of Lake of the Ozark's Tan-Tar-A Resort. If you are free that day, we would love to see you there.
Her successful audition means that Morgan is ranked as one of the best in the ENTIRE STATE on her instrument! I am extremely thankful to the Board of Education and our administration for being supportive of the band. Your continued support has meant a lot to the program and me.
Additional information to put this achievement into perspective:
Since the inception of the Missouri All-State Band in 1977, there have been four other De Soto Band students earn a spot playing in the Missouri All-State Band. Three additional students in this time have been named alternates for the Missouri All-State Band. Morgan will be the first student in 26 years to perform with the All-State Band, and only the 5th in 41 years!
Kristina Charlton-Piccolo- 1992
Jennifer Sutton- Flute-1991
Bob Bruff-Alto Saxophone-1979
Kyle Shewecraft-Trombone Alternate-2016
Matt Allen- Contra Clarinet Alternate-1999
Danielle Shunk-Flute Alternate-1993
Camp begins Wednesday July 18, 2017 at 8am in the HS Band room. This initial camp is for all new members, percussion, guard, and section leaders/drum majors. This weeks camp will focus on music, marching, and basics.
Full band camp begins Monday July 24, 2017. Full camp will run from 2pm-9pm. Students should bring with them their music, a pencil, water jug, and wear tennis shoes.
Preview Night will be Friday July 28th at 7pm. Friends, family, community members, and supporters are all invited to attend to see the preview of the 2017 Dragon Pride.
One big change this year that will positively impact all parts of the program is that we are now using Charms Office for the band program. This program will handle all of our contact, messaging, email, finances, inventory and much more. The best part of all of this, is that every student has access to Charms now FREE of charge. To learn more about how to login and utilize Charms follow the Charms tab above.
Click HERE to pre-order your copy of the HS Band DVD. DVD's will be made available Friday afternoon in the HS Band room.
The DVD has over 30 minutes of pictures and memories and is intended as a keepsake for students that took part in the marching band this year.
Is your mattress older than your band student?
Are you tired of waking up with a sore back?
Would you like to support the DHS Band Program AND get a new mattress?
Come to our mattress sale and get an amazing deal on a new bed. You will get the satisfaction of ensuring that your money is going to a great cause and the comfort of a great night's sleep!
Jefferson College State Band Festival 2017
Schedule for the day
Thursday, April 6th, 2017
Jefferson College Fine Arts Theatre
4:00 p.m.- Arrive at DHS, load band trailer, then load bus after attendance.
4:15 p.m.- Leave for Jefferson College
5:10 p.m. – Warm up
5:35 p.m. – Perform on stage for State Band
6:00 p.m. – Sight reading
After finishing sight reading, any parent wishing to check their student out may do so with Mr. Howard in the breezeway between the Fine Arts buildings.
6:30 p.m. – After sight reading we will load the buses and head home.
7:00 p.m.- Arrive home, unload, go home.
Clothes for the concert are nice dress pants, shirt, etc.
The main performance is free and open to the public. Sight reading is limited to just students and teacher due to space and accommodations.
Remember that the work we have done, will help to improve our band program for years to come. Congratulations on an incredible year!
De Soto Bands