Copyright 2015 The Wild Cards. All photographs used with permission. All rights reserved.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Nice and Easy
A native of Switzerland, before arriving in Canada, Walter was a self-described “office worker” with a love of music. Nice and Easy accurately describes his approach to playing and being part of a group, and life in general. As the owner/operator of Bayview Lodge, a vacation destination on White Lake, this fluid trombone player works hard to keep his chops in shape. His community life includes playing with the Valley Concert Band in Arnprior under the direction of Keith Estabrooks, and his goal of entertaining audiences of all ages is evident whether you catch him at the campground or on stage. Walter is always ready to work towards providing the best music for the occasion and
tackles everything that comes his way with enthusiasm.
Favourite song in the repertoire: The Best Is Yet To Come
“6 years San Quentin. 3 years Kingston Pen. (early release for good behaviour). The rest of my years I just wasted… “
No wonder the best is yet to come from this local Ottawa boy! Paul studied music at the University of Ottawa and at the Conservatoire de Musique in Montreal, and enjoys playing/listening to all styles of music. This former member “Cuivres à Cinq” brass quintet took time out from music to get married, start a business, and raise 4 daughters. A huge fan of New York City, Paul is the proud owner of a late 60’s Conn 88H (Elkhart), with F-attachment by the late Larry Minick, and is now happy to be part of the music world once more. Which, from his wife’s perspective, is a good thing because he’s been known to start projects around the house but not necessarily fin…..
Favourite song in the repertoire: Big Time Operator
Chris, on bass trombone, is our own big time operator. He began playing music at age 10, then joined his school band program on tuba at age 12. After 4 years of tuba, he started his third instrument, bass trombone, and that was the one. Chris then attended Brandon University, studying music, and graduated with a specialist in school music degree. After university, he continued to play tuba and trombone. He is currently playing with 6 groups in the National Capital Region and, in trying to list all the bands he’s played with, he got tired and rewrote this sentence. He has also played in the pit orchestras of over 15 musicals. In addition to music, Chris is passionate about cars, RC cars, photography, and video games. Most importantly, he found an amazing woman to marry a few years back, and she’s almost as busy in music as he is. Together, they even played some Dixieland Jazz at their wedding.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Whatever Lola Wants
Tracy grew up surrounded by music and it is her passion. Music being the fifth member of the family, she started piano lessons at age 4 and picked up the trombone at age 12. Her nickname is Lola, a name conferred upon her by a friend of long-standing who was well aware of her go-getter personality . . . Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets.
Tracy has degrees from McGill University in music education (piano) and performance (trombone), and – since leaving university, never wishing to see a tenor clef again! – has performed and toured with big bands and dance bands in Ontario, Quebec, and the Atlantic provinces. Tracy has been in backing bands for such notable vocalists as Ginette Reno, at the Montréal International Jazz Festival in 1986, and Cleo Laine in 1998 at Moncton’s Capitol Theatre. As a member of The Memphis Mafia showband from 2003 to 2008, Tracy loved being the trombone player in their 3-piece, CHICAGO type horn section with Rick Rangno and Vic Maltby.
Currently, she also enjoys performing with the Georgian House Orchestra, a big band which plays monthly at the Georgian House Restaurant in Alexandria.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Anything Goes
As a freelance bass trombonist for over 35 years, Anything Goes is an appropriate motto for Murray. He was a member of most “big bands” in Ottawa, as well as symphony and chamber orchestras. He was a founding member of the NorthWinds Brass Quintet and the Ottawa Bones, a jazz trombone quartet with rhythm section. Murray has been “in the pit” for many Ottawa performances of Broadway musicals and has appeared with Bob Hope, Dionne Warwick, Natalie Cole, and Barbra Streisand. Murray was a member of the RCMP Band, and is presently the bass trombonist and librarian for The Maple Leaf Brass Band.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Adios Muchachos
Born in Montréal, Serge started playing the trombone at age 13 in high school, many years before deciding to switch to bass trombone - a decision he doesn’t regret. In 1982, his studies took him to McGill University and the renowned Montreal Symphony Orchestra bass trombonist Ted Griffith - a fantastic teacher and father figure to a lot of his students. In April 1983, Serge successfully auditioned for the Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, based in Durban South Africa. Armed with a one-year contract, he said “Adios, muchachos!” and went to live his dream and the adventure. The dream was so real, and the adventure so good, that he stayed there for 20 years! Serge and his family call Ottawa home since 2003, and he currently teaches music full-time at École secondaire du Versant in Gatineau. Serge is also the bass trombonist with l’Orchestre Symphonique de Gatineau, teaches trombone at École publique de LaSalle, and is the Outaouais region representative for the Twigg Musique store of Montreal.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Make Me Smile
Malcolm began playing the trombone at age ten. No particular memory accompanies his choice of instrument but, looking back after so many years, it seems to have been a wise one. Music is a wonderful hobby and has helped bring balance to Malcolm's other life as a high school science teacher. Since graduating from Brookfield H.S., Malcolm has performed (in no particular order) with the Ottawa University Jazz Band and Wind Ensemble, Ottawa Community Concert Band, Musica Jocosa Orchestra, CAMMAC Orchestra, Stan Clark Orchestra, Queen's University Jazz Band, Riverside Bones Quartet, Christchurch Concert Band, Johnny Vegas All Star Band (under the name Eddie Riviera), and the latest group to make him smile: The Wild Cards..
MEET THE BAND
Favourite song in the repertoire: When The Saints Go Marching In
Rod was raised and educated in Calgary. After an aborted start on the violin at age 10, he began playing the trombone in Grade 7 and was soon playing in an RCAF Reserve band, junior orchestras and concert bands, small dance combos, and professional stage shows. Later, he enjoyed two summers touring with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. College graduation brought Rod to Ottawa in 1966 for a career in aviation with the National Research Council and, later, Transport Canada. He played for several years with the Governor General’s Foot Guards militia band, the Ottawa Civic Symphony, and the CBC studio orchestra. In 1974, he switched musical genres and began a continuing attachment with the enduring APEX (Dixieland) Jazz Band. Since then, he has also played with the National Press Club Jazz Band, the Bill Jupp B Band, and the Grey Jazz Big Band, as well as frequently subbing in several other Dixie and big bands. He’s no saint and he fits right in with the wild ones!