Steve Wiest

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Steve Wiest
Steve Wiest Studio with the One O'Clock.jpg
From Lab 2013: Steve Wiest directing the One O'Clock Lab Band during a recording session at Crystal Clear Sound Studios, Dallas, May 19–21, 2013 (photo by Michael Clements)
Background information
Birth nameJohn Stephen Wiest
BornCleveland
GenresJazz
Occupation(s)Musician, composer, cartoonist, music educator, author
InstrumentsTrombone
LabelsArabesque
ArtistShare
Associated actsMaynard Ferguson
University of Denver Lamont School of Music
Websitesteve-wiest.com
www.du.edu

Steve Wiest (né John Stephen Wiest; born 1957) is an American trombonist, composer, arranger, big band director, music educator at the collegiate level, jazz clinician, author, and illustrator/cartoonist. From 1981 to 1985, he was a featured trombonist and arranger with the Maynard Ferguson Band.[1] Wiest is in his sixth year as Associate Professor of Jazz Studies and Commercial Music at the University of Denver Lamont School of Music. He is the Coordinator of the 21st Century Music Initiative at the school. Wiest has been a professor for thirty-one of the thirty-nine years that he has been a professional trombonist, composer, and arranger. From 2007 to 2014, Wiest was Associate Professor of Music in Jazz Studies at the University of North Texas College of Music and, from March 2009 to August 2014, he was director of the One O'Clock Lab Band and coordinator of the Lab Band program. At North Texas, Wiest also taught conducting, trombone, and oversaw The U-Tubes — the College of Music's jazz trombone band. Wiest is a three-time Grammy nominee — individually in 2008 for Best instrumental Arrangement[2][3] and in 2010 for Best Instrumental Composition,[4] and collaboratively in 2010 for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album,[4][5] which he directed.[6] As of 2013, Wiest has in excess of 58 arrangements and compositions to his credit, which include 10 original compositions from his current project (see 2013–2014 project, below).

Career[edit]

After attending Hattiesburg High School, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Wiest completed a bachelor's degree in Jazz Studies at the University of Southern Mississippi, mentored by Raoul F. Jerome. After graduation, he joined the band of Maynard Ferguson as a featured trombonist and one of two arrangers, touring five to seven months a year from 1981 to 1985.[1]

In 1985, Wiest began graduate school at the University of North Texas, earning a master's degree in Jazz Studies in 1988.[7] While there, he played lead trombone in the One O'Clock Lab Band, which toured Australia in 1986 and produced one live album, and four studio albums. Three of his compositions and one arrangement were recorded on Lab '86, Lab '87, and Lab '88, and another composition was recorded on Lab '89, after he graduated. As a grad student, Wiest directed the Nine O'Clock Lab Band (1985–1986), served as an arranging TA for Paris Rutherford (1986–1987), and directed the Three O'Clock Lab Band (1987–1988). Wiest studied trombone with Vern L. Kagarice, DMA. Independently, Wiest also studied trombone with Jay Friedman of the Chicago Symphony.

From 1988 to 1990, Wiest served as Assistant Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Texas at Arlington, where, among other things, he ran the UTA Improvisation Camp and directed the Small Jazz Group Program.

For 17 years, from 1990 to 2007, Wiest was the Director of Jazz Studies and Trombone Performance at University of Wisconsin–Whitewater, directing jazz ensembles, which included a standard modern big band and the university's premier jazz band: an Art Blakey-style small group called The Jazz Symposium. He taught improvisation, music history, arranging,[8] and classical trombone. For a number of years, Wiest was a member of the Faculty Brass Quintet

Establishing a small group, rather than a big band, as the premier jazz ensemble and intensified advanced music laboratory was a pedagogical innovation of Wiest. The Jazz Symposium produced two CDs, one featuring guest artist Ernie Watts. Under the direction of Wiest, The Jazz Symposium performed at the North Sea Jazz Festival, the Montreux Jazz Festival, and King's College London

From 1994 to 1999, Wiest was a member of the Doc Severinsen Big Band. In 2006, Wiest reunited with Maynard Ferguson for Ferguson's final series of concerts: 6 nights, 12 sold-out performances at The Blue Note, Greenwich Village.

From the fall of 2007 until August 2014, Wiest was at the University of North Texas as Assistant Professor of Jazz Composition and Jazz Trombone.[9] Wiest founded The U-Tubes, the College's trombone band. In May 2009, Wiest became director of One O'Clock Lab Band and coordinator of the Lab Band Program, after having served as interim director since August 2008.[10]

Since 2014 Wiest has been Coordinator of the 21st Century Music Initiative at the University of Denver Lamont School of Music.

2013–2014 project[edit]

In August 2013, Wiest, a sci-fi enthusiast, published a sci-fi novel, The Dover Stone: A Concerto for Folded Space.[11] Wiest explains that it is built on inter-connected vignettes or movements that comprise an epic tale of life from other worlds and our place in the cosmos. The Term "folded space" is a theoretical speed of travel, faster than the speed of light, exceeding relativistic velocity by folding space, bringing far to near, reducing the long distances to a virtual zero. The tale is the impetus for ten compositions by Wiest, who describes the works as "programmatically informed" by the science fiction."[12] The fictional vignettes culminate to answer real-life physicist Enrico Fermi's famous question, "Where is everybody?", a reference to the wonderment of life elsewhere in the universe. The stories occur in periods from 1182 to 2457.[12]

The Steve Wiest Eclectic Electric Band will record the compositions as one album titled, Concerto for Folded Space. Wiest's compositional style ranges from straight ahead to jazz fusion, and sometimes pop-rock. With this project, Wiest is experimenting with serialism, not in a strict sense, but many elements are generated from rows.

The musical portion is an ArtistShare project and is scheduled for release early 2014. The band members are Wiest (composer and trombonist), Stockton Helbing (drums, producer), Braylon Lacy (bass), Ryan Davidson (guitar), Noel Johnston (guitar), and Daniel Pardo (flute). Guest artist are Bob Mintzer (tenor sax), Arlington Jones (né Arlington Julius Jones II) (piano), and James Pankow (trombone).[12]

Essentially, ArtistShare is the record label and represents Wiest's foray into an alternative model for producing music. ArtistShare is a fan-funded platform where artists provide content for patrons who subscribe to access levels of their choosing. For example, on November 6, 2013, Wiest uploaded one in a series of "cool stuff", as he phrased it, to the Participant Zone of his ArtistShare Concerto for Folded Space site. The "cool stuff" included a "programmatic" analysis and complete score for "The Flutes of Glastonbury", one of the ten compositions.

Other sci-fi inspired compositions

Other sci-fi-related works composed by Wiest include "Ice-Nine", a 2009 composition scored for big band, drawn from Kurt Vonnegut's novel, Cat's Cradle. "New Cydoinia", a 2010 big-band arrangement, is a programmatic representation of all of the theories and stories surrounding the enigmatic area on Mars known as Cydonia. "A Night in Pidruid", a 2006 composition scored for big band, is a programmatic and thematic development of characters and events in Robert Silverberg's Lord Valentine's Castle. "Blues From Space", a 1984 composition scored for big band, is a novelty tune about an alien who brings a philosophy of "Sing the Blues" to Earth.

Trombone manufacturer artist affiliations[edit]

  • Griego Mouthpieces — Wiest uses a Griego Artist Series trombone mouthpiece designed for him called the Griego-Wiest SW Model; the mouthpiece was commercially introduced April 2013
  • Edwards Trombones — Wiest performs on an Edwards trombone, called the "Excalibur", which was exclusively designed for him by Elias Christan Griego of Edwards Instruments
    For more information on Edwards Trombones, see Getzen

Professional affiliations[edit]

  • 1982 — Wiest became a member of ASCAP while composing and arranging for Maynard Ferguson; after a hiatus, he rejoined in 2009

Awards & recognition[edit]

Academic

Professional

Personal life[edit]

Wiest is married to violinist, orchestra conductor, and music educator, Carmen Jean Wiest (formerly Diagostine, née Watzka). They have a daughter, Amber, and two sons, Matthew and David.[11] His father, John Thomas Wiest (1932–2006) was a trombonist[8] and his mother, Wanda Jean Stegall, is a retired educator. Wiest has three siblings, Jeanne Stegall-Keene, Robert Wiest and Andrew Wiest, a professor of history at the University of Southern Mississippi. His cousin, Nick Drozdoff, is a jazz trumpeter and music educator based in the Chicago area who also played with Maynard Ferguson in the 1980s.[8]

Works[edit]

Selected sessionography & discography[edit]

As leader

  • Steve Wiest Big Band
    Excalibur
    Recorded in Chicago, August 5, 6 & 19, 2005
    Arabesque AJO180 (2006); OCLC 71803153[14]
  • Quintet
    Out of the New
    Arabesque AJ0189 (2008) (sample video)
    Wiest (trombone); Stefan Karlsson (piano), Lynn Seaton (bass), Ed Soph (drums), and Fred Hamilton (né Frederick E. Hamilton) (guitar)[15]
  • The Steve Wiest Eclectic Electric Band
    Concerto for Folded Space
    ArtistShare (scheduled release, early 2014)[16]
    Stockton Helbing (drums, producer), Braylon Lacy (bass), Ryan Davidson (guitar), Noel Johnston (guitar), Daniel Pardo (flute)
    Featured guests: (i) Bob Mintzer (tenor sax), (ii) Arlington Jones (né Arlington Julius Jones II) (piano), (iii) James Pankow (trombone)

As director of the One O'Clock Lab Band

As director of the U-Tubes

As director of The Jazz Symposium, UW-Whitewater

  • Presenting the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Jazz Symposium (1898) OCLC 41887813
    Tracks 3 & 4 recorded live at the Montreux Jazz Festival, June 1996
    Track 7 recorded live at Irvin L. Young Auditorium, UW-Whitewater, February 1996
    Tracks 1 & 2, 5 & 6, 8 & 9 recorded in a studio 1996
  • The best of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Jazz Symposium: 1996–1997 (1997) OCLC 41887538

As trombonist and arranger with Maynard Ferguson

As trombonist with the Frank Mantooth Jazz Orchestra

  • Per-se-vere
    Recorded at Streeterville Studios,[18] Chicago, October 5–7 & 29, 1989
    Optimism Records (1987), released by Sea Breeze; OCLC 34834322, 724753681
  • Dangerous Precedent
    Recorded at Streeterville Studios,[18] Chicago, December 1991 to December 1992
    Sea Breeze (1993); OCLC 28959540
  • Sophisticated Lady
    Recorded January 23, April 24, December 13 & 14, 1994
    Sea Breeze (1995); OCLC 36112415

As trombonist with other artists

As student trombonist and arranger with the One O'Clock Lab Band

As composer and trombonist with other artists

Selected compositions and arrangements[edit]

Kendor Music, Inc., distributor

UNC Jazz Press, Greeley, Colorado

From One O'Clock Lab Band albums
  1. "The Miles Files"
    (audio from Lab '86) (live in 1997) (1986)
  2. "Upside Downside"
    Composed by Mike Stern
    Arranged by Wiest
    (recorded on Lab '87) (1986); OCLC 498390714
Video sample, DR Big Band, 2007
  1. "Night Visions"
    Composed & arranged by Wiest
    (recorded on Lab '87) (1987); OCLC 498390620
  2. "On the Edge" (1988)
    (audio from Lab '88), trombone solo by Wiest
  3. "With You"
    (recorded on Lab '89; OCLC 22865000) (1989)
From UNC Jazz Lab Band 1 albums
  1. "Second Thought", composed & arranged by Wiest (1998); OCLC 498390445
  2. "Gotham City", commissioned by the University of Northern Colorado Lab Band I (1991)
  3. "Another Frame", arranged by Wiest (1998) (composed 1985); OCLC 222416215
From other projects
  • "The Modal House of Hip Hop"
    Commissioned by Curt Hanrahan for the Milwaukee Youth Jazz Ensemble (2005)
  • "Overview"
    Commissioned by Neil E. Hansen, Northwest College (1998)

Walrus Music Publishing – trade name for Daniel Franz Beher, Pismo Beach, California (audio samples)

From One O'Clock Lab Band albums
  1. "Spirals" (from Lab 2008)
  2. "Ice-Nine" (video from Lab 2009); (live from Birdland, March 10, 2009)
  3. "New Cydonia" (video from Lab 2010)
  4. "The Last Theme Song" (video from Lab 2011)
  5. "Denton Standard Time" (from Lab 2013)
Written for other North Texas lab bands
  1. "Puddin' Time"
    Composed by Brad Leali (née) Bradford C Leali
    Arranged 2010 by Wiest for the Three O'Clock Lab Band, Brad Leali, director
  2. "Wes' Side Story" (Wes Montgomery)
    Composed 2010 by Wiest for the Two O'Clock, Jay Saunders, director
From the album, Excalibur
  1. "Excalibur", composed by Wiest 2006
  2. "The Silver Spin", composed by Wiest 2006
  3. "Cerulean 12", composed by Wiest 2006
  4. "The Once and Future Groove", composed by Wiest 2006
  5. "A Night In Pidruid", composed by Wiest 2006

Maynard Ferguson Publishing and library[19]

Recorded and performed by the Maynard Ferguson Band
  1. "Besame Mucho
    Composed by Consuelo Velázquez & Sunny Skylar
    Arranged by Wiest 2006
    (recorded on The One and Only; OCLC 173844972)
  2. "Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone"
    Composed by Bill Withers
    Arranged by Wiest 2004
    (recorded on The One and Only; OCLC 173844972)
  3. "I Love You"
    Composed by Cole Porter
    Arranged by Wiest
    (recorded on Brass Attitude; OCLC 40582399)
  4. "I'm Old Fashioned"
    Music by Jerome Kern, lyrics by Johnny Mercer
    Arranged by Wiest 2004
    (recorded on MF Horn VI; OCLC 607863162)
Performed by the Maynard Ferguson Band
  • "Smile Again", composed & arranged by Wiest 1981
  • "Brother to Brother", composed by Gino Vannelli, arranged by Wiest 1981
  • "Gabriel's Gig Bag", composed & arranged by Wiest 1982
  • "Return of the Chameleon", based on "Chameleon" by Herbie Hancock, adopted and arranged by Wiest 1983
  • "Blues From Space", lyrics & music by Wiest (1984)
  • "Tyrannosaurus", composed & arranged by Wiest 1984
  • "Whiplash", composed & arranged by Wiest 1984
  • "Compared to You", lyrics & music by Wiest (1985)
  • "Portrait of Pamela J.", composed & arranged by Wiest (1985)
  • "Balboa", composed & arranged by Wiest 1985
  • "Megabyte", composed & arranged by Wiest 1999
  • "Step Aside", composed & arranged by Wiest 1999

Other publishers

Recorded and performed by the Maynard Ferguson Band
Performed by the Maynard Ferguson Band
  • "South 21st Shuffle"
    Arranged for Maynard Ferguson's band by Wiest
    Adapted for full big band by Bob Lowden (né Robert W. Lowden; 1920–1998)
    Barnhouse (1983); OCLC 26875255
From One O'Clock Lab Band albums
From the University of Wisconsin–Whitewater
  • "Bu's Groove"
    "Bu" is short for "Buhaina", Art Blakey's Muslim surname
    Composed by Michael W. Plog
    Arranged by Wiest 2000

Unpublished

  • "Hornets Nest" (1988)
    Composed as a possible theme song for the Charlotte Hornets basketball franchise

Jazz festivals, concerts, master classes, and workshops[edit]

In addition to Wiest's concert appearances at music festivals, clinics, and camps as director of the One O'Clock Lab Band, he has appeared as an artist and clinician with organizations and events that include:

Collegiate

Scholastic

Regional, national, professional

As director of The Jazz Symposium, UW-Whitewater

As director of the One O'Clock Lab Band

Selected videography and podcasts[edit]

Maynard Ferguson

Personnel includes Maynard Ferguson – soloist (leader, trumpet), Steve Wiest (trombone), Tim Ries – soloist (alto sax), Daniel Jordan – soloist (tenor sax), Denis DiBlasio – soloist (bari sax, piccolo, scat singing), Gregg Bissonette (bass), Matt Bissonette (drums)

One O'Clock Lab Band

Other works[edit]

Jazz Haiku 1.jpg

Cartoons and illustrations

  1. Diblasio's Bop Shop: Getting Started in Improvisation
    By Denis DiBlasio
    Cartoon illustrations by Wiest
    Kendor Music (1986); OCLC 20568610
  2. Diblasio's Bop Shop: The Sequel — Conception & Ear Training For Beginning Improvisation
    By Denis DiBlasio
    Cartoon illustrations by Wiest
    Kendor Music (1987); OCLC 24892741, 25093474
  3. The Jazz Educator's Handbook
    By Jeffrey S. Jarvis (born 1952) & Douglas S. Beach (born 1956)
    Cartoon illustrations by Wiest
    Kendor Music (2002); OCLC 50031871, 850199144
  4. Denis DiBlasio
    Perpetual Baggage Claim (CD)
    Cover art: Wiest; OCLC 49734502
  5. Brad Dutz, Camels, Nine Winds (CD)
    Caricatures by Wiest; OCLC 32095806

Articles

  1. Take the Lead for Trombone
    By Wiest
    Hal Leonard (1995); OCLC 28532540, 795288188, 221969784, OCLC 68715014
  2. Remembering the King:
       A Tribute to James Louis "JJ" Johnson 1929–2001
       A Collection of Remembrances of the late JJ Johnson
    , by Wiest, Wayne Andre, David Baker, Matt Calvert, Bill Hughes, Curtis Fuller, Benny Powell, and Steve Turre
    ITA Journal, International Trombone Association, Vol. 30, No. 2, April 2002, pps. 14–16; ISSN 0145-3513
  3. Inclusion: Slide Hampton at Wisconsin-Whitewater
    By Wiest, Edwards Trombones website (2003)
  4. The Sound of Success: James Pankow
       Transcription of "Hanky Panky"
    Article & transcription by Wiest
    ITA Journal, International Trombone Association, Vol. 32, No. 1, January 2004, pps 35–37; ISSN 0145-3513
  5. Focused Eclecticism: The Art of Steve Turre
       Transcription: "Steve's Blues"
    Article and transcription by Wiest
    ITA Journal, International Trombone Association, April 2005, Vol. 33, pps. 36–45; ISSN 0145-3513
  6. Trombone Masterclass: Developing an Efficient Airstream
    By Wiest
    Windplayer (magazine), 2005, Issue 67, pps. 34–35; ISSN 0895-1527
  7. Book Review: Jazz Bones: The World of Jazz Trombones
    By Wiest
    ITA Journal, International Trombone Association, July 2007, Vol. 35, No. 3, pg. 62; ISSN 0145-3513
  8. Jazz Advocacy in the 21st Century
    By Wiest, Instrumentalist (magazine), December 2012, Vol. 67, No. 5, pps. 27–45; ISSN 0020-4331
  9. Album review: The Callum Au Big Band: "Something's Coming"
    By Wiest
    The Trombonist, British Trombone Society, Autumn/Winter 2013; OCLC 30405211, 474888784, 47240055 & OCLC 224645146

Liner notes

  1. Eric J. Morones
    About Time
    Arabesque (2008); OCLC 457242963
  2. Paul Baker: Baker's Dozen Big Band
    Goes to Eleven
    BJAM Records (Baker's Jazz and More) (2011)

Digital media jazz advocacy

  1. Created the One O'Clock website (www.theoneoclock.com)
  2. Founded The Denton Messenger, an e-newsletter covering jazz and the One O'Clock
  3. Created One O'Clock mobile apps for the iPhone and android
  4. Founded The Blog Shed, covering jazz and the One O'Clock (swiest2.wordpress.com)

References[edit]

General references[edit]

  1. The Jazz Discography, West Vancouver: Lord Music Reference; OCLC 182585494
  2. UNT Names One O'Clock Lab Band Director, by Stephen Becker, Art&Seek (a journal of KERA FM & KERA-TV), April 3, 2009
  3. Wiest interview: Jazz at One O'Clock, by Jerome Weeks, Art&Seek on Think TV (a journal of KERA FM & KERA-TV), June 29, 2009

Inline citations[edit]

  1. ^ a b Steve Wiest Interview, by Matthew J. Keller (born 1975), webmaster of the www.maynardferguson.com (interviewed around 2000)
  2. ^ The Complete List of Grammy Nominees, New York Times, December 6, 2007
  3. ^ Wiest Nominated for Grammy, ITA Journal, International Trombone Association, April 2006, Vol. 36, No. 2, pg. 6
  4. ^ a b Grammy Awards: List of Winners, New York Times, January 31, 2010
  5. ^ School Notes, Down Beat, February 2010, Vol. 77, No. 2, pg. 78
  6. ^ Contemporary art music in Texas: a Guide to Composers, Organizations, and Degree Programs, by Stephen J. Lias (born 1966), Stephen F. Austin State University Press (2011); OCLC 774693911
  7. ^ University of North Texas Alumni Directory 1994, (1994), pg. 627; OCLC 610287171, 733649776, 768191551
  8. ^ a b c A Conversation with … Trombonist Steve Wiest, by Kevin M. Mitchell, JAZZed Magazine, June 21, 2007, Symphony Publishing Company, June/July 2007, pps. 26–33; OCLC 762001345, 848214328, 795990712, OCLC 81146088
  9. ^ New Positions, ITA Journal, International Trombone Association, July 2007, Vol. 35, No. 3, pps. 10–11; ISSN 0145-3513
  10. ^ Wiest Accepts Baton to Lead One O'Clock Lab Band, by Lucinda R. Breeding, Denton Record-Chronicle, May 17, 2009
  11. ^ a b The Dover Stone: A Concerto for Folded Space, by Wiest, self published (August 19, 2013); ISBN 1491202645 & 978-1491202647
  12. ^ a b c Steve Wiest official website at ArtistShare
  13. ^ Alison Townsend, Steve Wiest Receives Arts Board Fellowships, US Fed News Service, Washington, D.C., January 4, 2007
  14. ^ Excalibur album reviews:
  15. ^ Out of the New album reviews:
  16. ^ Note: ArtistShare® is a trademark of Brian Camelio; ArtistShare, Inc., a Delaware corporation
  17. ^ One and Only album review: The One And Only, by Silsbee, Down Beat, Vol 74, No. 9, September 2007; ISSN 0012-5768
  18. ^ a b Streeterville Studios, Inc. (1969–2002) was owned by James C. Dolan (1924–2006)
  19. ^ Maynard Ferguson Collection, Special Collections, University of North Texas Libraries (2008)
  20. ^ Kirkwood Community College Swings at Elmhurst Festival, US Fed News Service, Washington, D.C., March 13, 2009
  21. ^ University of Texas-Tyler to present Jazz Concert Featuring Steve Wiest, US Fed News Service, Washington, D.C., March 18, 2010
  22. ^ Three Music Alumni to Join Symphony Orchestra in 'Triple Play' March 26, Washington, D.C., Targeted News Service, March 24, 2011
  23. ^ Trombonist Steve Wiest Headlines Jazz Festival March 23 & 24, US Fed News Service, Washington, D.C., March 13, 2012
  24. ^ Annual Jazz Festival to Feature Grammy-Nominated Performer, Illinois Wesleyan University News Service, January 3, 2011
  25. ^ Musicians Ready To Rock With Jazz, by Dennis McDermott, Aberdeen American News, Aberdeen, South Dakota, May 4, 1996, pg. 3B
  26. ^ School Scene: Area Students in All-State Jazz Band, Aberdeen American News, Aberdeen, South Dakota, April 27, 1999, pg. 5B
  27. ^ Milwaukee Journal
    • Cudahy Band Bizarre '91 set for Saturday, January 28, 1991, pg. B3
    • Cudahy Band Bizarre '95 set for Saturday, February 28, 1995, pg. B4
  28. ^ Writing the Book on Jazz Education, by Eliahu Sussman, JAZZed Magazine, March 2008, pps. 12–17 OCLC 762001345, 848214328, 795990712, OCLC 81146088
  29. ^ Get Out: Greater St. Louis Jazz Festival, St. Louis Post-Dispatch April 18, 2007, pg. E2