The Stony Brook Jazz program is led by Ray Anderson, chosen five times as “Best Trombonist” in Downbeat Magazine’s Critics Poll. Ray conducts The Blowage, Stony Brook’s big band and supervises the small ensembles along with talented graduate assistants. Thomas Manuel, Director of the Jazz Loft in Stony Brook, performs in The Blowage and assists in the administration of the jazz program.
The Blowage plays a wide variety of big band music, covering the entire scope of jazz history and reaching into the future. Classic compositions of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Fletcher Henderson, Thad Jones and others are featured next to more modern works, including compositions by Stony Brook students and Ray Anderson. Undergraduates, graduates, and musicians from the local community, often including Stony Brook faculty from different departments, play together. The band is known for its precision and blend, as well as individual creativity. In that regard, the band is a living, evolving entity, exploring the essential and lively tension between composition and improvisation.
The Jazz Combos include everyone from beginning undergraduates to virtuoso jazz players, with every level in between. The advanced groups play highly original compositions and arrangements by members of the group, the less advanced focus on standards of the jazz repertoire, but always with a focus on originality. As with the big band, the focus is on both the group's sound as a band, i.e. how we play together, and the individual's creativity, i.e. how we tell our own story.
Jazz Ensemble (MUS 264)
Monday Evenings 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Room 0111, Music Building
Jazz Combos (MUS 267)
Meeting times are flexible to the schedule of the members
Openings for all instruments (including, but not limited to: Saxophones, Trombones, Trumpets, Piano, Guitar, Bass, Drums, and Vocals). You must audition to take these classes (amps, music stand, drum set will be provided - drummers bring sticks, etc.). Auditions will be held the first Tuesday and Wednesday of each semester in Music : 0114-B, in the basement of the Music Building of the Staller Center. Signup sheet is posted outside the music office, room 3304.