“Bunny” Berigan Jubilee Band
By Julie Flemming
conclusion of the 2011 Bunny Berigan Jazz Jubilee there was a sigh of worry
that went through the audience. It
had just been announced by Rev. Al Townsend that he was retiring and bring to
an end the years of the Bunny Berigan Memorial Band. The Rev. Al Townsend had put this band
together years previous to help continue the weekend dedicated to the memory of
the great Trumpet player, Bunny Berigan.
Rev. Al had filled his band with leading musicians that had Wisconsin ties….. and now
it was done. Everyone
wondered-----would there be another Bunny Berigan Jazz Jubilee?
after the conclusion of the 2011 weekend, Bob Schulz stepped forward and
volunteered to put together a “new” band to play at the 2012, May
18 – 20, event. It was agreed
that along with the newly formed band there would have to be a new name and so
the Bunny Berigan Jubilee Band had it’s birth
and the Leader would be Bob Schulz.
Bob Schulz is an extremely popular and
talented cornetist-bandleader-vocalist from San Anselmo, California. He is the leader of the Frisco Jazz Band
and a very busy guy on the music scene.
A native of Wonewoc,
Wisconsin, Bob learned to play
trumpet and cornet at an early age.
He was a school band director for 17 years
before joining the legendary Turk Murphy Jazz Band of San Francisco in
1979. He is the foremost exponent
of the Bob Scobey trumpet style and is an outstanding vocalist in the tradition
of Clancy Hayes. Currently, Bob travels around America and highlights cruises
either as a guest artist or leading his own Frisco Jazz Band in excellent
Bob Hirsch, a native of Viroqua, Wisconsin, and
now living in Sacramento, California, began playing piano at an early
age and by the time he was 11, he was playing duets with Freddie Slack. His interest in classic jazz was
supported by his parents and stimulated by his discovery of Eddie Condon and
his New York
jazz bands. As one of the premier pianists in the country, Bob has chalked up
an impressive list of performances with great musicians over the years,
including Clancy Hayes, Wild Bill Davison, Tommy Saunders, and many
others. He led his own band in La Crosse for 20 years and
was co-leader of the Saunders-Hirsch All Stars for 25 years.
Doug Finke, Trombone player, discovered
jazz in the 1950’s when he was a young band student in Elmhurst, Illinois. Doug actually was not a part of the
music world from 1964 to 1996 while he raised a family and had a corporate
career. In 1997 he assembled some
of the finest musicians in the country to play classic jazz and called it The
Independence Hall Jazz Band, in honor of Philadelphia
where he was living. The year 2003
saw Doug move to Louisville,
Kentucky where he now lives. He is the leader of the West Market
Street Stompers in Louisville
and plays regularly around the country with The Bob Schulz Frisco Jazz
Band. His calendar is full of
Scott Anthony, was born in Summit, New Jersey, now
resides in San Francisco. He is a Banjo/Guitar player and
vocalist. He started playing the
banjo at 11 years old and kept playing through his college years at Dartmouth and into
graduate school. Scott moved to San Francisco in 1974
where he joined Turk Murphy at his club, Earthquake McGoon’s, playing at
McGoon’s on Pier 39 until it closed.
Scott makes his living now as a professional musician, computer
programmer/consultant, and creator of custom guitars. His own Banjo is a thing of beauty that
everyone should see.
Kim Cusack, coming from Warrenville, Illinois,
is one of the best jazz clarinetist/alto saxophonists in the country. He has performed and recorded with the
Salty Dogs, Bob Schulz Frisco Jazz Band, Red Rose Jazz
Band and with jazz legends such as Georg Brunis, Wild Bill Davison and Turn
Murphy. Kim now plays in Madison, Wisconsin,
with David MacGregor’s Vagabond Reeds and actually will be appearing with
them on Sunday, May 20, 2012
as another part of the Bunny Berigan Jazz Jubilee.
Rich MacDonald, coming from Winona, Minnesota, is a
professional jazz drummer/vibist and professor of music at Winona
State University. He has been a performer in the jazz lab
bands at the University of North Texas and as performer and director for jazz
ensembles at the University
of Northern Colorado. He has also performed with many jazz
artists such as George Benson, Eddie Daniels, Slide Hampton, Milt Hinton, Rich
Matteson, Arturo Sandoval and others.
Terry Grosskopf, Bass and Tuba player, comes from LaCrosse, Wisconsin. He has been a member of The Wonderful
World Jazz Band led by the Rev. Al Townsend. Terry is known for his wonderful bowed
bass solos. He played with the
Brian Gurl Productions/Guy Lombardo Orchestra from 2003 to 2011. At this time he is an Independent Music
Reviewing the line-up of the Bunny
Berigan Jubilee Band, one can see that there is a real treat in store for those
attending the Bunny Berigan Jazz Jubilee, May 18-20, 2012 in Fox Lake, Wisconsin.
This band will be featured at
Mullin’s Drive-In and the American Legion Club House on Friday. Saturday they will appear twice at the Fox Lake
Community Center. On
Sunday morning they will play for the graveside service in honor of Bunny and
his daughter Joyce Berigan-Hansen and at the Fox Lake Community Center in the afternoon.
further information on times and tickets one can call 920-928-6094 or access
the web at www.bunnyberiganjazzjubilee.com