Career History

 

BOBBY LEWIS

Trumpet - Flugelhorn

SYNOPSIS

Considered a master trumpeter/flugelhorn player, Lewis is famous for his lyrical style and warm sound, especially on the flugelhorn. Bobby is expert at all jazz genres. He has appeared around the world with his own bands, Dixieland bands, traditional combos, big bands and avant garde experimental groups. He has also performed with Chicago Symphony and St. Louis Symphony Orchestras, among others. Lewis has received numerous awards, including two music composition fellowship grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. He was musical director and featured soloist with Peggy Lee.  His “played with” list includes: the Jack Teagarden Sextet, Claude Thornhill, Tex Beneke and the Modernaires, Benny Carter, Marion McPartland, Henry Mancini, Curtis Mayfield, and Jerry Butler, and accompanied some of the greatest singers in jazz history including Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Sarah Vaughn, Judy Garland, Mel Torme, Sammy Davis Jr., Maureen McGovern, and Harry Belafonte. Bobby has released 12 recordings on compact disc as a leader and is a top Chicago recording musician with over 7,500 recording credits including TV and radio commercials, movie scores, and with numerous recording artists.


HIGHLIGHTS

 Instrumentalist, Vocalist, Composer, Arranger, Leader, Teacher

  • Bachelor of Music Degree in Education, Master of Music Degree in Performance- University of Wisconsin/Madison
  • Born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin - resides in Chicago since 1961


  Recording studio musician - Performed on more than 7500 sessions including "Old Style Beer - God's Country" theme;
     the Kemper Bugler; State Farm Insurance "Like a Good Neighbor"; the Pillsbury Doughboy

  • Recording Artists: RAMSEY LEWIS; CURTIS MAYFIELD; JERRY BUTLER; NATALE COLE; ALICE COOPER; THE BUCKINGHAMS; SINGERS UNLIMITED
  • Jazz Artists: JACK TEAGARDEN, JOE MORELLO, DUKES OF DIXIELAND; TEX BENEKE; LES HOOPER;  
    SY ZENTNER; DAVE REMINGTON; AL HIRT


• Conductor, musical director and featured soloist with PEGGY LEE

• First trumpet with TONY BENNETT in Chicago appearances for 15 years

• Performs on trumpets in B-flat, C, high E-flat, and low F (Alto Trumpet); piccolo trumpet; flugelhorn; cornet; bugle.

 Performed with :


    • CHICAGO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
    • MILWAUKEE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
    • BALLET CHICAGO
    • AMERICAN JAZZ PHILHARMONIC
    • ST. LOUIS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
    • GRANT PARK SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
    • ORCHESTRA OF ILLINOIS


  • Creator and leader of THE FOREFRONT, a contemporary trumpet ensemble consisting of four trumpets (also playing flugel horn, cornet, piccolo trumpet, alto trumpet, and bass trumpet) with bass and drums. This group performed at the First International Brass Congress in Montreux, Switzerland; brass and trumpet conferences in New York City, Denver, and Chicago; and the National Association of Jazz Educators convention in Dallas.
  • Creator and co-leader of EARS-JAZZ OF ALL ERAS, a spontaneous creative jazz ensemble of seven that performed Tuesday evenings for seventeen years (six at Orphans Pub and eleven at Andy's Jazz Club) in Chicago dating back to it's origin in 1975. This group has also performed in Osaka, Japan; Rotterdam and The Hague in the Netherlands (the North Sea Jazz Festival); and many special functions in Chicago, including the Chicago Jazz Festival.
  • Leader of the RHYTHMAKERS, a mainstream jazz quintet that performed Friday evenings at Andy's in Chicago for fourteen years, beginning in 1978.
  • Creator and leader of MUGGLES, a jazz roots band featuring the music of LOUIS ARMSTRONG and early traditional jazz.


 Producer (Executive and Musical)  of 12 recordings on compact disc:

  •   INSIDE THIS SONG (1993)
  •   PASSION FLOWER ( 1994)
  •   HERE I GO AGAIN ( 1995)
  •   FLUGEL GOURMET (1997)
  •   JUST HAVIN' SOME FUN (1999)
  •   ANOTHER TIME (2003)
  •   INSTANT GROOVE (2006)
  •   WARM COOL (2011)
  •    MELLIFLUOUS TONES (2014)
  •    PLAY ON (2016)
  •   IN THE FOREFRONT (RE-ISSUED - 2000)
    • A 2 CD re-issue of two LP recordings by THE FOREFRONT. INCANTATION received world wide recognition by National Public Radio on Willis Conover's Voice of America program and received a four-star review in Downbeat Magazine.
    • IN THE FOREFRONT received much acclaim from the International Trumpet Guild and contains the composition entitled THE TRUMPET SECTION SUITE. Also included in the reissue: TRUMPETRY; and an accompanied flugelhorn solo INNERMOST DESIRE/OUTERMOST EXPRESSION.
  •   ON FIRE ! The Rhythmakers - Live At Andy's in Chicago (1989/ REISSUED: 2005)


 Received two music composition fellowship grants from the National Endowment for the Arts

  • THE TRUMPET SECTION - Suite- a four movement work presenting an historical capsule of the trumpet section from King Oliver/Louis Armstrong through Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Harry James and Maynard Ferguson to the present.
  • TRUMPETRY - in three movements for an orchestra of ten trumpets, including 2 piccolo, 4 B-flat, 2 alto and 2 bass trumpets, piano, bass and drums; performed in Chicago, New York and recorded at  Universal Recording Studios.


• Produced two recordings: EARS - BY REQUEST and EARS 2U on tape cassette

• Produced the recording  ~ The RHYTHMAKERS - ON FIRE! Now available on CD.

• Composed and arranged music for various jazz ensembles, stage band, brass ensembles, solo trumpet with concert band, a French horn sonata, and a trumpet etude book that has been published along with all of The Forefront compositions,
by Charles Colin
 Music in New York.

• Member of ASCAP; the International Trumpet Guild; Amer. Fed. of Musicians; and NARAS 
 
(producer of the Grammy Awards).

 Other Highlights:

  • 5th Annual Jazz Party At Sea - Jazz Cruise to Alaska Sept. 2005 - featured artist with Windy City Quintet, Claudio Roditi, Dick Hyman and Harry Allen.
  • Performed in Bombay (Mumbai) and Pune India, January 1998 and again in March 2000, with the CHICAGO JAZZ EXPRESS quintet led by Burl Lane (bassoonist and saxophonist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
  • Soloist at special concerts in Warsaw, Poland, June 1998 and April 1999 with the  WARSAW BRASS
  • Received 1997  'Musician Of The Year' award from the Del Segno Musicians Club of Chicago.
  • Kool Jazz Festival, New York City - 'Chicago Jazz Night' at  Carnegie Hall with Joe Williams
  • Member of Jack Teagarden Sextet (1962-63)
  • Royal Easter Show - Sydney, Australia with Barrett Deems All-Stars
  • Chicago Jazz Festival appearances including - featured soloist with Benny Goodman; and appearances with his own groups including: EARS - Jazz Of All Eras;  the Bobby Lewis 'Instant Groove' Septet 
  • Hyde Park Jazz Festival headliner appearances
  • CHICAGO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA - featured soloist,   'All Gershwin' concert at the Ravinia Summer Festival; Youth Concerts at Orchestra Hall, Henry Mazer, conductor
  • Sister City Festival - Inter-People Cultural Fair, Osaka, Japan,  1986 with EARS - Jazz Of All Eras
  • Bix Beiderbecke Memorial Jazz Festival, Davenport, Iowa - Bobby Lewis Jazz Quartet
  • Performed on music sound track for the movie    'A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN'


 In addition to PEGGY LEE and TONY BENNETT, Bobby also performed with:

  • ELLA FITZGERALD; SARAH VAUGHN; FRANK SINATRA; SAMMY DAVIS, JR.; 
  • JUDY GARLAND; LIZA MINELLI; MEL TORME; LENA HORNE; AL JARREAU;
  • BARRY MANILOW; THE CARPENTERS; BILL CONTI; HARRY BELAFONTE;
  • NANCY WILSON; JOHNNY CARSON; JAMES BROWN; MAYNARD FERGUSON;
  • BENNY CARTER; DOC SEVERINSEN; ROY ELDRIDGE; CLAUDE THORNHILL;
  • TEX BENEKE and the MODERNAIRES; SKITCH HENDERSON; BUDDY MORROW;
  • CLARK TERRY; JACO PASTORIUS; MARIAN McPARTLAND; ART HODES; 
  • BARRETT DEEMS; IRA SULLIVAN; VIC DAMONE; RICHIE COLE; JABBO SMITH
  • HENRY MANCINI; MAUREEN MCGOVERN; ROSEMARY CLOONEY; BERNADETTE PETERS


 Served on the Board of Governors - National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS)
    - ( producers of the Grammy Awards) 1993- 1998.

 Received 'Distinguished Alumni Award' from Oshkosh West High School April, 2000. 

© Robert A. Lewis 2014 -2016 (All rights reserved)