Who We Are & What We Do
Hi! Thanks for your interest in the Gary Urwin Jazz Orchestra.
We're an eighteen-piece "big band" jazz group based in Los Angeles. The band is comprised of players with whom leader Gary Urwin has been associated as an arranger and trumpet player. Gary's role is to arrange or compose all the music we do, and to lead the band when we perform or record.
With the active support of Business Manager and co-producer Pat Longo, we began work on our first CD ("Perspectives"), which debuted on Sea Breeze Records in 2000. Word of mouth spread quickly, and the band's activities grew into enthusiastically-received live appearances, a follow-up Sea Breeze CD ("Living in the Moment") in 2003 reflecting the band's development and growth, a third CD in 2006 ("Kindred Spirits") featuring a "front line" of acclaimed soloists Bill Watrous and Pete Christlieb, and our latest CD on Summit Records ("A Beautiful Friendship") adding trumpeter Carl Saunders to that exclusive front line of soloists, in addition to Watrous and Christlieb.
The band is committed to using familiar tools in a fresh way to stretch the idiom, while always swinging and remaining true to the jazz roots of the music.
The band has been referred to as "A veritable who's who among the Los Angeles area's most accomplished studio and big-band artists." It enjoys the talents of well known Los Angeles jazz personalities Pete Christlieb, Wayne Bergeron, Bobby Shew, Carl Saunders, Rick Baptist, Kim Richmond, Dan Higgins, Charlie Loper, Andy Martin, Alan Kaplan, Alex Iles, Pete De Siena, Ron King, Christian Jacob, Trey Henry, Ralph Razze and many others. Other jazz artists for whom Gary has written include Bill Watrous, Arturo Sandoval and Mike Vax.
We hope you enjoy what we do!
We've been fortunate to release four critically-praised CDs: "A Beautiful Friendship", "Kindred Spirits", "Living in the Moment" and "Perspectives".
Our second recording, "Living in the Moment", hit Number 31 on JazzWeek's Jazz Chart (with a bullet) and remained on the charts for six weeks. The band's albums can be heard on some 135 radio stations nationwide, as well as abroad.
The band has played to enthusiastic receptions and well-received press reviews at such Los Angeles jazz venues as the Jazz Bakery, Catalina Bar & Grill, Charlie O's, Typhoon at the Santa Monica Airport and the Los Angeles Jazz Institute Jazz Festival.
Hear the Band Live!
The Gary Urwin Jazz Orchestra, featuring soloists Bill Watrous, Carl Saunders and many others, will be performing live in concert on Saturday, May 27 at 1:30 pm at the Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival. The event:
“Big Band Spectacular"
A Festival Presented by the Los Angeles Jazz Institute
The Westin Los Angeles Airport
5400 W Century Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045
Gary's all-star, 18 piece big band will be performing favorites from its four existing CDs, as well as some entirely new material from the new CD currently in progress. Jazz critics have consistently described:
- (1) the band's soloists as among "the greatest bop-based soloists in the world",
- (2) the band's personnel as “a veritable who’s who among the Los Angeles area’s most accomplished studio and big-band artists”, and
- (3) the band's musical arrangements ("charts") as "Sublime .... Gary Urwin pens arrangements that recognize the [big band] heritage ... , with 21st Century enhancements of daring harmony, adventurous instrumentation, and innovative musical ideas."
For more information online, visit:
The Los Angeles Jazz Institute: http://www.lajazzinstitute.org/
Our Latest CD
Our fourth album, "A Beautiful Friendship", features a "front line" consisting of jazz legends Bill Watrous (trombone), Pete Christlieb (tenor sax) and Carl Saunders (trumpet) backed by the band, with arrangements written specially for this project by leader Gary Urwin. On Summit Records.
Look for updates here!