Guest Musicians Join FSC Students in Evening of Jazz
LAKELAND, Fla. (March 11, 2011) – National jazz performers will join talented students and faculty at the FSC Jazz Ensemble concert on Wednesday, March 16. The concert is part of the Festival of Fine Arts sponsored by Florida Southern College and will be held in Branscomb Auditorium at 7:30 p.m.
The concert will feature a full and textured blend of smooth sounds from the various instruments and musicians slated to perform. In addition to the accomplished student jazz band personnel, guest artists will include Bill Prince on multiple instruments, Eddie Metz, Jr. on drums, and Jeff Phillips on keyboards. They will be accompanied by alto and tenor saxes, trumpets and trombones, and piano, guitar, and bass.
Multi-instrumentalist Bill Prince comes from a background rich in music. He serves as a professor emeritus of music at the University of North Florida and has performed with numerous bands and orchestras including Buddy Rich, Xavier Cugat, Tommy Dorsey, Les Brown, and many more. The demand for his talent has taken him to all 50 states as well as 75 countries throughout the world where he has performed professionally on the trumpet, flugelhorn, trombone, flute, clarinet, saxophone, piano, and bass. In addition, he composes and arranges music for ensembles, and has released "Happy Thoughts," a CD which he composed, arranged, and performed all parts.
Drummer Eddie Metz, Jr. was given his first pair of drumsticks at the age of three. He played his first professional job at the age of 12 and has played on almost 100 recordings since then. Known for his swinging musical approach and stylistic variety, Metz has become the drummer of choice for many jazz and cabaret performers. He has toured with the Count Basie Orchestra, Michael Feinstein, Chick Corea, Debby Boone, The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra and many other performers who play in a variety of styles. Metz maintains a full schedule of festivals, concerts, jazz cruises, tours, and recordings, and has served as a full-time staff musician at Walt Disney World.
Jeff Phillips began playing organ at age 6 and the tuba by the time he reached middle school. Phillips is one of a handful of people in the country who can play bass pedals with his feet, play a left hand accompanying part, and solo or accompany with his right hand. Through the years, he has performed with 7 different groups on every style of music from German folk music to rock and roll. Phillips continues to perform in Florida and across the United States and Canada while residing in Lakeland and working part time with the jazz program at Harrison School for the Arts.
The FSC Jazz Band is under the direction of Paul Butcher, Florida Southern College Director of Jazz Studies, trumpet instructor, and instructor in the music management program. Throughout his career, Butcher’s exposure and training in music has been diverse and multi-faceted. He performed with the United States Air Force Academy Band for a time, leaving to pursue a Master’s degree in trumpet performance at the University of Denver. He has also experienced the demands of studio and live work in Nashville, including TV shows, jingles, and recordings. Notables that Butcher has performed with include Henry Mancini, Ray Charles, Natalie Cole, Burt Bacharach, and Rosemary Clooney.
The evening will feature sounds of the Big Band Era as well as pieces for small combos. Tickets are $15.00. To purchase tickets or for more information about the Festival of Fine Arts, call 863-680-4296 or visit www.flsouthern.edu/ffa.