Meet the Band
Brian Alpert , drums
Brian has performed at festivals, clubs and events across the U.S., Canada and Hong Kong. His diverse background includes playing western swing with Rounder recording artists Cowboy Jazz and Hall of Famer Maryann Price; delta blues with guitarist Bob Margolin of the Muddy Waters band; rock with guitar icons Tom Principato and Jimmy Thackery; and jazz with Mose Allison, Danny Gatton, Tim Eyermann, Big Nick Nicholas, the Creole Gumbo Jazz Band, and many others. Brian currently occupies the drums chair in the DC-based vintage big band, Doc Scantlin’s Imperial Palms Orchestra, and Washington’s premier western swing ensemble, the Oklahoma Twisters.
Gary Gregg , clarinet/tenor sax/soprano sax
Gary grew up listening to the rollicking show bands in Las Vegas, then as a teenager played traditional jazz with the Desert City Six and the Red Onion Jazz Band in Phoenix. Since then he has spent a lifetime studying the styles of the great early New Orleans clarinetists as well as the swing-era clarinet and tenor masters. Gary is one of the most versatile reed players on the local scene, able to conjure players as diverse as Johnny Dodds, Sidney Bechet, Benny Goodman, Illinois Jacquet, and Lester Young within his own exciting approach to the music. Over the past 30 years Gary has been heard with the top DC-based trad jazz, swing, big band, and R&B groups, including the Federal Jazz Commission, Clarinet Connection, Storyville Seven, Hot Jazz, Doc Scantlin's Imperial Palms Orchestra, New Columbia Swing Orchestra, Radio King Orchestra, SingCo Rhythm Orchestra, Red Hot Swinging Johnsons, Swing's the Thing, and Chaise Lounge. Gary’s credits include jazz festivals, club dates, concerts and recording sessions in California, New York City, Germany, the Netherlands, and up and down the East Coast. Gary has appeared at the Kennedy Center, Blues Alley, Wolf Trap, Iridium, New York’s famed Rainbow Room, and Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. Along with Dave, Gary performed at a royal wedding ball in London; the Culinary Olympics in Frankfurt; appeared on-camera in NBC-TV's hit show "The West Wing"; was a finalist in the State Department's national Jazz Ambassadors competition; and was an Artist-in-Residence at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. Gary is an Army veteran, and teaches privately.
Dan Hall , bass
Dan’s extensive performing experience crisscrosses the country as well as many musical genres. His bass has been found in numerous symphony orchestras from Nevada to Maine, and in groups ranging from small-group jazz and big bands to salsa bands, show bands, and chamber groups. In Maine, Dan played in a trio with legendary jazz guitarist Lenny Breau. Dan played the live Lawrence Welk Show in Branson, Missouri for seven years, followed by two years in Les Brown's Band of Renown. He also played in house and show bands in Reno, as well as in the Reno Philharmonic, Reno Chamber Orchestra and Reno Opera Orchestra. Dan currently keeps busy in pit orchestras for shows at the Kennedy Center, Ford's Theatre, Studio Theater, Signature Theater, Arena Stage, Shakespeare Theatre, and the Hippodrome, and plays big-band swing in the Tom Cunningham Orchestra. Dan’s bass can be heard on Pete Fountain’s CD “Big Band Blues”. Dan holds a degree in Music Education, and studied Performance at the New England Conservatory of Music. He was the bass instructor in the jazz program at the University of Maine, Augusta, and was adjunct faculty bass instructor at the University of Nevada, Reno. He has performed often for students under the auspices of Young Audiences.
Brian Priebe , trombone
Brian and his trombone and vocals may be found in a wide variety of settings, from trad jazz, big band, and salsa to rock, symphonic and German groups. He has performed with such luminaries as Connie Francis, Doc Severinson, Frankie Valli, Della Reece, Carole Channing, Louis Bellson, Clark Terry, and the Moody Blues. Brian is a veteran of Orquestra Pachanga, the Salt Lake Good Time Jazz Band, the Utah Chamber Orchestra, the Last Chance Jazz Band, and the String of Pearls Orchestra, with whom he did three national tours. He currently tours with the Bay Street Brassworks and performs locally with the Bumper Jacksons and Yamomanem. Brian’s horn can be heard on various movie/TV soundtracks and commercials. Brian is also a prizewinning alphornist, and serves on the faculty of the North American Alphorn Workshop in the Rocky Mountains of Utah. His alphorn work can be heard on numerous recordings with Salzburger Echo. As an operatic vocalist, Brian has appeared as The Count in The Marriage of Figaro at Lincoln Center. Brian was the vocal jazz director at Westminster College in Utah, and currently serves as music director at a church in DC.
Jeff Reynolds, guitar/banjo
Jeff plays violin, guitar, banjo and mandolin with a variety of jazz and western swing groups in the area, including the Tom Cunningham Orchestra, Oklahoma Twisters, Red Hot Rhythm Chiefs, and Stolen Moments. He has also performed with the Hot Club of DC, Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, Doc Scantlin's Imperial Palms Orchestra, the Woodshedders, Laissez Foure, Sunshine Skiffle Band, the Arcadians, and Yamomanem. Jeff is comfortable in settings ranging from trad jazz to contemporary jazz, big band and small-group swing, folk, western swing, and gypsy jazz. Jeff studied with the great rhythm guitar master Steve Jordan of the Benny Goodman and Stan Kenton Orchestras. Jeff has performed at the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian, and many local nightspots. He teaches privately.
Dave Robinson , leader/cornet/trumpet/bass trumpet
Dave has performed and toured with the top DC-area traditional and swing bands for over 30 years, including the Storyville Seven (leader), Sheiks of Dixie, Sunshine Skiffle Band, Manassas Festival Jazzers, Pontchartrain Causeway New Orleans Jazz Band, Royal Blue Orchestra, Doc Scantlin's Imperial Palms Orchestra, New Columbia Swing Orchestra, Radio King Orchestra, SingCo Rhythm Orchestra, and Hal's Bayou Jazz Band. Years ago Dave gigged with such swing era veterans as Maxine Sullivan, Billy Butterfield, Steve Jordan, Johnny Blowers, and Bob Haggart. He has performed at the White House, the Capitol, the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian, New York's Rainbow Room, Preservation Hall, Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, and Blues Alley. Dave has toured the Pacific Northwest with the Boilermakers Jazz Band and has been heard at the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee, on National Public Radio, and in various film soundtracks. Along with Gary, Dave performed at a royal wedding ball in London; the Culinary Olympics in Frankfurt; appeared on-camera in NBC-TV's hit show "The West Wing"; was a finalist in the State Department's national Jazz Ambassadors competition; and was an Artist-in-Residence at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. Dave is Adjunct Professor of Music at George Mason University, where he directs the Mason Traditional Jazz Ensemble. Since 1988, Dave has directed the award-winning Capital Focus Jazz Band youth ensemble, which has performed across the U.S. and in Canada, France, England, Scotland, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Spain, and the Caribbean. He is the founder of the Traditional Jazz Educators Network, is Past President of the American Federation of Jazz Societies, and has produced the Smithsonian's Jazz Concert Series. Dave helped to launch the Traditional Jazz Youth Band Festival in Sacramento, where he serves annually as clinician, lecturer and adjudicator, and he also has served on the faculties of the STJS Trad Jazz Youth Camp in the Sierra Nevada mountains and the National Jazz Workshop at Shenandoah University, as well as on the mentor teams of the Jazz Education Network and the National Association for Music Education. Dave hosted "The French Quarter" on Sirius XM Satellite Radio for three years, drawn from his huge archive of trad jazz recordings. He is the author and producer of the nationally-acclaimed Traditional Jazz Curriculum Kit, published in partnership with the Jazz Education Network (JEN), the Smithsonian, the National Endowment for the Arts, and various foundations.
Lena Seikaly , vocals
“Lena Seikaly is gaining a national reputation…her litheness and control are incredible”, says the Washington City Paper. “One of the local jazz scene’s most promising performers”, says the Washington Post. Classically trained, Lena is that rare singer with equal gifts as an operatic mezzo-soprano and a jazz storyteller in traditional or contemporary style. Lena studied the music of such blues/jazz pioneers as Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, Billie Holiday and Maxine Sullivan while a member of the Capital Focus Jazz Band youth group, with whom she performed at the North Sea Jazz Festival in The Netherlands, the New Orleans Ascona Jazz and Classics Festival in Switzerland, the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee, and the Smithsonian. Now the leader of her own jazz trio, quartet and quintet, Lena has sold out performances at such DC institutions as Blues Alley, the Strathmore Mansion, the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage, and Twins Jazz, in addition to recurring appearances at various local nightspots. Lena was selected as one of 11 semifinalists in the international Thelonious Monk Jazz Vocal Competition. On the national level, she was chosen to study with Nnenna Freelon at the prestigious Jazz Aspen Snowmass Academy in Colorado, with Carmen Lundy at the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead program at the Kennedy Center, and with Marilyn Horne at the University of Maryland. As a classical singer, Lena performs with Schola Cantorum, the Washington Chorus, and other choirs. Her classical singing has won awards from the National Association for Teachers of Singing and the National Society of Arts and Letters. Lena has been an Artist-in-Residence (jazz) at the Strathmore Music Center and a featured soloist (classical) at the Eistedfodd International Music Competition, and she toured France with the jazz group Sanga Equation. She is also a composer; her jazz compositions may be heard on her critically acclaimed CDs “Lovely Changes” (2011) and "Written In The Stars" (2009). Lena holds a degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Maryland, and has served on the faculty of the Duke Ellington School of the Arts as vocal jazz instructor. In addition to maintaining a busy performance schedule, Lena conducts educational workshops at the Strathmore.