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Joel Penner Newsletter

DragonJazz Band

Inspired  by the big band and bebop sounds of forties and fifties, The Joel Penner Sextet plays unique original arrangements of some of the most famous standard tunes and jazz classics.  The music is extremely "listenable"and is easily accessible to all levels of jazz audiences.

The band's debut CD, DragonJazz, has been extremely well received and is currently being played on numerous Jazz radio stations across the country.

They have played at many of Los  Angeles finest Jazz Clubs, including: The Jazz Bakery, The Jazz Spot, Spazio's, Jax and The Baked Potato.  The  band was also featured at the 2001 Monterey Hills Jazz Festival.  They have also been featured performers at many of the areas municipal concert series', including: Beverly Hills, La Canada/Flintridge, Palm Desert, LA's Pershing Square, Manhattan Beach and Oxnard's Heritage Square.  The band has also performed for private functions and public performances at many of the local colleges and universities in the area, including U.C. Riverside, Cal State Long Beach, Cal State Fullerton, Scripps College, Claremont, McKenna College and Woodbury University.

In April of 2003, the band was featured on KSDS FM 88.3's Jazz Live program in San Diego.  They performed a concert at the Saville Theater which was broadcast live over KSDS FM to more than 40,000 listeners.

The musicians  in the band are some of  L.A.'s finest.

Joel Penner, Trumpet/Flugelhorn - Joel is from Los Angeles, California. He began playing trumpet at eight years old.  He graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Music from the University of California at Berkeley and has been playing professionally ever since.  He has backed up many famous artists, such as, The Temptations, Glenn Campbell, Florence Henderson and Stevie Wonder.  He has primarily been a band leader and has led groups which have played clubs all over the U.S. and Canada.  His present project, The "Joel Penner Sextet"; has been together since 1999 and has performed all over Southern California at numerous venues including Clubs, Colleges and Universities, Festivals, Fairs and Concerts.  His 2001 CD, DragonJazz was very well received, getting airplay on jazz stations throughout the country.  His latest CD, The Church of the Little Black Dog on the Sea Breeze labelwas released in October, 2005.   Joel plays a Stomvi Master Series trumpet and a Courtois flugelhorn.



Bill von Ravensberg, Bass - Bill is also from Los Angeles.  He started studying guitar and bass at eight years old.  At eleven, he took up woodwinds which he played all through college.  Towards the end of his college career, he started playing bass exclusively.  Bill has recorded and toured with numerous stars including, Tom Jones, Pat Boone, Frieda Payne, Thelma Houston, Helen Reddy, Johnny Rivers, Jennifer Warnes, John Guerin, Bill Watrous, Ray Anthony and more.  Bill is a founding member of The Joel Penner Sextet and has been with  the  band since 1999.  Bill plays a 1962 Fender Precision bass through a Walter Woods amplifier and a Goss Speaker.


Doug MacDonald, Guitar - Doug was born in Philadelphia and raised in Honolulu.  He is one of the most respected guitar players in the business.  He is a well known sideman and leader with many recordings under his own name.  He has performed and recorded with Stan Getz, George Shearing, Joe Williams, Ray Brown, Buddy Rich, Dave McKenna, Groove Holmes, Jack McDuff, Ray Charles, Rosemary Clooney, Joe Pass, Herb Ellis, Hank Jones, Jack Sheldon and many others.   Doug has been playing with the band sine 2000.  He plays a John Buscarino guitar through an Acoustic Image amplifier and a Rich Rezor speaker.



Cengiz Yaltkaya, Piano - Cengiz is from Istanbul.  His father was an accomplished pianist and one of the founders of The Istanbul Philharmonic. Cengiz, studied music in Geneva before he moved to New  York.  He has a Bachelor's Degree from NYU and has attended The New School, Julliard and graduated from The Berklee School of Music in Boston.  Cengiz has studied privately with Herb Pomeroy, Gary Burton, Mike Gibbs, Steve Swallow, Johnny Bowden, Jimmy Giuffre and Sir Roland Hannah.  He worked for Atlantic Records until 1995 when he moved permanently to Los Angeles.  Since that time he has been an active jazz pianist playing  and recording all over Southern California.  He frequently tours Europe and has performed at jazz festivals in France, The Czech Republic, Cuba, Morocco, Rumania and Scotland.  Cengiz is a founding member of The Joel Penner Sextet. Cengiz prefers Yamaha and Baldwin pianos and plays Roland electric pianos.


Michael Rose, Tenor/Soprano Saxophones - Michael was born in Omaha, Nebraska.   He started studying saxophone at age eleven and was playing professionally by age fifteen.  In 1980, Michael moved to Los Angeles to study with the great Joe Farrell.  He has also studied with David Schnitter, Archie Schepp and David Murray of The World Saxophone Quartet.  Michael has extensive film and recording work including, "Honeymoon in Vegas"with Nicholas Cage and "Stanley's Gig" with Faye Dunaway.  He has performed and recorded with Freddy Fender, Charlie Rich, James Intveld, Karen Black and Jules Aiken.  Michael has been with the band since 2000.  He plays a Selmer Mark VI tenor and an Oleg soprano.



Jerry Redmond, Drums - Jerry has been in the Los Angeles music scene for years.  He has worked with such great artists as Buddy Rich and Florence Henderson.  He has been a mainstay in the . A. Recording scene, having worked on numerous albums, films and television shows.  Jerry is also past vice president of A.F.M. local 47.



Rick Hils, Arranger - Rick Hils has shared his time between playing piano and writing music. His love of writing was established when he was a boy through listening to records which covered a wide range of style. Whether it was "Sheherazade", Percy Faith's "A Summer Place" or "The Beatles", it all was valuable as creative inspiration. At five years of age, Rick was given music lessons. His piano and theory teacher had to teach him the alphabet, or at least "A" through "G". Rick will always be grateful for his parent's interest in seeing him study music, and both of his parents were musicians themselves. Rick has worked as a piano player and arranger in  the Los Angeles area most of his life.  He spent three years on the road with Sam Butera and has written arrangements for many of the top bands in town including The Joel Penner's Sextet. Rick considers his arrangements for Joel's band some of his most inspired work.

 

 


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