Swingbone North

James Grove | Vocals and Trombone

Steve Stargardt | Piano

Laurie Sears | Saxophone & Flute

Jack Dryden | Upright Bass

Randy Marsh | Drums & Percussion

A few choice full-play numbers…

Who is Swingbone North?

Jim Grove | Trombonist/Vocalist:

Jim is a product of the jazz program at MSU under Ron Newman.  He splits his time between performing in the TC area and Cleveland, Ohio with Swingbone where his jazz quintet holds a 5-year, weekly residency at The Standard and has recorded at the venerable Bop Stop.   Hard bop, swinging jazz standards, and cool blues grooves are the order of the day wherever he is performing.   Jim has found the TC area to be “an embarrassment of riches” when it comes to the musicianship of those with whom he has the pleasure of working in Swingbone North.

Steve Stargardt | Piano:

Steve is a piano instructor and jazz performer.  He graduated from the College-Conservatory of Music of the University of Cincinnati with a B.M. and B.S. degree. Was an educator for 48 years; music teacher, middle school math, middle school counselor, and elementary school principal.  He has taught Jazz workshops, adjudicated jazz festivals, and mentored jazz pianists.

Private lessons in both classical and jazz improvisation. Steve is currently active in performances with many local jazz musicians.

Laurie Sears | Saxophone & Flute:

Laurie is familiar to Michigan audiences through her work on various jazz stages, with Broadway show orchestras, and with symphony orchestras throughout the state.  Laurie performs with her groups as well as with numerous other Michigan jazz artists/ bandleaders in concert and festival settings, in clubs, and for school clinics, including the Building Bridges With Music program with Jeff Haas.  National jazz and popular artists that Laurie has shared the stage with include Sarah Vaughan, Mel Torme, Frank Sinatra, Natalie Cole, Aretha Franklin, Liza Minelli, Julie Andrews, Johnny Mathis, Henry Mancini, Smokey Robinson, The Temptations and The Four Tops.
As an educator, her teaching experience currently includes Northwestern Michigan College Director of Jazz Ensembles and Adjunct Instructor of Woodwinds, private lesson instruction, and the Interlochen College of Creative Arts Adult Band Camp.

Jack Dryden | Bass:

Jack Dryden is a masterful six-string bassist, proficient in all genres, and has played with many greats such as Bob James and Leo Creek, and in venues such as Carnegie Hall and Broadway. He locally performed for YES with Interlochen’s orchestra, and for 30 years of Jazz at Sunset at Chateau Chantal.

Randy Marsh | Drums:

Randy is a third-generation musician and has been professionally active for over 50 years. Though growing up in a jazz background, Marsh has performed in a wide variety of music and entertainment settings. In 1976 Marsh toured Europe with the Mike Grace Quartet, a contemporary jazz ensemble that played a record-breaking 72 performances in 30 days! In 1978 there was a live recording made with legendary “Count Basie” tenor saxman Jimmy “Night train” Forrest also featuring jazz organ legend Shirley Scott, resulting in an album released on the Palo Alto Jazz label, entitled, “Heart Of The Forrest”.

At the end of 1985, after a 4-year stint with a popular fusion band known as Turning Point, Marsh moved to the San Francisco Bay Area and quickly became the first call drummer on the music scene. From 1986 to 1988 joined up with and toured the United States, Canada, and Europe with the 1987 “Tony Award-winning theater company, the “San Francisco Mime Troupe”.

Randy Marsh is noted for his creative ability to adapt to many different music settings and is currently, and has been, the drummer with Jeff Haas’s jazz trios & quartets for over 30 years! As well as the eclectic “Big Fun Project” with Jeff Haas, Randy is the drummer in Organissimo, a Hammond organ trio project that recently marked a 22nd anniversary and with 7 album releases. Randy is also well known as a harmonica player and is featured on tracks of 3 Organissimo albums, “This Is The Place” Groovadelphia, and B3tles, a tribute to the Beatles.

Randy can be heard at various music venues throughout Michigan and is currently playing regularly in Traverse City with Jeff Haas and BIG FUN.