The Longmont All Star Jazz Band was started in the summer of 2001. It was a longtime dream of Bill Wilkinson to start a high school jazz band that would play at community and private events. The All Star Jazz Band is comprised of students from the Longmont area high schools. Students must audition to be in the All Stars and only the top students on each instrument are selected. The All Stars rehearse twice a month and perform about fifteen times per year.
Some of the major performances includes:
- Performing several times at Dazzle Night Club in Denver, CO
- Performing on stage with the Lawrence Welk Band in Branson, Missouri
- Performing for the Olympic Torch Ceremony in 2002
The All Stars have recorded 5 CDs. They have recorded at The Sound Kitchen in Nashville, Martin Sound in Los Angles, RCA Victor Recording Studio in Nashville, Blue Rock Recording Studio in Austin and Mighty Fine Productions in Denver.
MEET THE DIRECTOR
Bill Wilkinson was born at an early age on February 16, 1949 in Granite City, Illinois. He is the youngest of eight children. At age 10 he began playing trumpet. Bill graduated from Collinsville High School in 1967. Mr. Wilkinson received a full trumpet performance scholarship from John Brown University. Mr. Wilkinson traveled for three years playing 150 shows a year with a group called The Sound Generation. He traveled with this group while he was a full time student at John Brown University. He received his B.S. Mus. Ed. Degree from John Brown University in 1974. He graduated “Laudy How Cum.” A least that is what the music professors said as he walked on stage to received his degree.
He has performed with Lionel Hampton, Florence Henderson, Roy Clarke, Pat Boone, Andre Crouch and performed for two Presidents, President Nixon and President Ford. He married his college girlfriend Beth in 1971. They have three beautiful children, Summer, Megan and Seth and two very beautiful grand-daughters Madeline and Emma (no ugly ones).
In 2005 Mr. Wilkinson retired from the Longmont public schools after 31 years. After he retired from The St. Vrain School District he taught Jazz Band at Regis University for 4 years. Mr. Wilkinson is currently the Director of Bands at Longmont Christian School. During his years in the St. Vrain School District his bands were selected to perform at The Colorado Music Educator’s Convention 5 times and the Colorado Bandmasters Convention one time. The Longmont High School Marching Band marched in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Dublin, Ireland. His marching bands were invited to perform half-time shows at the Denver Bronco’s games two times. Under Mr. Wilkinson’s direction his high school bands received superior ratings at festivals every year. Mr. Wilkinson started The Skyline Jazz Festival in 1979. The Skyline Jazz Festival is still going strong. In 1989 Mr. Wilkinson was selected to direct The Colorado All State Jazz Band. Bill is in demand all across Colorado to adjudicate and clinic high school bands. Mr. Wilkinson started The Longmont All Star Jazz Band in 2000 and is still the director.