2018 Western Illinois University Jazz Festival

Leroy Jones 

The 45th Annual Western Illinois University Jazz Festival will be held Friday and Saturday, Feb. 15, 16, and 17, 2018. 

Friday’s main event will be concerts by the WIU Jazz Band and Jazz Studio Orchestra  featuring Leroy Jones, Trumpet virtuoso.  Saturday will feature performances by college, high school, and junior high students.

One of the country's foremost jazz trumpet artists, Leroy Jones     (b. February 20, 1958)  began playing trumpet at the age of ten, and by the time he was 12 was leading the Fairview Baptist Church Marching Band, a group of young musicians organized by guitar- and banjo-player Danny Barker. When the musicians' union forced Barker to disband the group in 1974, Jones became a union musician and took over the running of the group, renamed the  Hurricane Brass Band , himself. In 1975 or 1976 he left the group, touring for a time with  Eddie Vinson  and  Della Reese  before forming his own group, the Leroy Jones Quintet.  In 1991 Jones joined the  big band of Harry Connick, Jr., and the exposure with Connick's band (including the opportunity for the Leroy Jones Quintet to open for Connick, which they did in 1994), led to Jones' releasing his first album under his own name; Mo' Cream From The Crop came out on the Columbia Records label in 1994. The Leroy Jones Quintet continues to tour and record, and since 2004 Jones has also appeared with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Dr. John.

Public $15; Senior Citizen $10; Youth $7; WIU Student FREE with valid University ID. Tickets available at the Hainline Box Office and at the event.  The Friday night concert featuring the WIU Jazz Band and WIU Jazz Studio Orchestra with special guest Leroy Jones will be held in the COFAC Recital Hall at 7:30 pm.  Saturday's concert will be in the COFAC Recital Hall at 3:00 pm.

And, on Saturday, we expect our lineup for middle/junior high, senior high, and college jazz bands to be outstanding, as usual. Our guest artist/clinician will again perform with JSO on Saturday afternoon.  Live streamed events can be viewed on the Western Illinois University Youtube Channel.

For band directors, check the links on this site for Jazz Festival materials (invitation, flyer, schedule, entry form, concert ticket form, and lodging information). Early registration deadline for entries is December 1st, and after that date, it will be at the higher rate.

For additional information about the Festival, please contact: University Bands, Sallee 202/204, Western Illinois University, 1 University Circle, Macomb, IL 61455; PH 309-298-1505; Fax 309-298-1499; or e-mail jazz@wiu.edu.

For the general public who wish to attend, Friday night concert tickets are available at: Hainline Theatre Box Office, Browne Hall 114, Western Illinois University, 1 University Circle, Macomb IL 61455; PH 309/298-2900. Box office hours are Monday-Friday, 12:00-5:00 P.M.

Hope to see you all there!

John Cooper, Ph.D
Director of Jazz Studies
Western Illinois University

For more information, please contact to WIU Bands Office, Phone (309) 298-1505, or Email to JB-Cooper@wiu.edu