Joined: 31 Dec 1969
|Posted: Mon Apr 12, 2010 11:48 am Post subject: Local Band - The Kansas City Junior Kix Band
|(from Hal White)
This was a big band formed in 1966 or so by pianist Chris Mayer, myself, and several others. The band personnel were drawn from the top
high school players around the KC area, including Rockhurst, Southwest, Lee's Summit, and Shawnee Mission East high schools. There was no adult supervision, and no formal affiliation with the Kansas City Kix Band, a group of top professional KC musicians whom we were in awe of. The Junior Kix band performed three years running (more or less) at the Kansas City Jazz Festival, receiving positive mention in Downbeat magazine. The personnel changed over the years, as people graduated. Here is a partial list of personnel:
Chris Mayer -- piano
Jim Weinberg -- drums
Steve Helphingstine -- bass
Rod Fleeman -- guitar
Roger Noll -- alto
Gary Fike -- alto
Greg Howard -- tenor
Dave Holt -- bari
Bill Drybread, Jr.
At this remove of forty years, there are likely misspelled names. There are also clear omissions, specifically from the sax and trombone sections (my apologies!!), so it would be great if any of the members of the band see this and can add their recollections.
Several of the members of this band also went on to musical distinction. Rod Fleeman is a famous guitarist, credited by Pat Metheny (Mike's brother) as an inspiration, Mike Metheny has had a distinguished recording and teaching career, and Stan Kessler is one of KC's top jazz
Kansas City Junior Kix Band drummer Jim Weinberg went on to Las Vegas, where he began an illustrious career, playing with a who's who of twentieth century entertainers. More about Jim can be found at http://www.harplandmusic.com/jimweinberg.html
Any further info about the Junior Kix band is greatly appreciated.