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Magnificent Seven bring Sunday afternoon Jazz to church

Jerry Stawski
Jerry Stawski
Jerry Stawski





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Magnificent Seven brings Sunday afternoon jazz to Bonita Springs

An annual gathering of jazz virtuosos known as the Magnificent Seven, led by Jerry Stawski, entertain at an intimate gathering of jazz patrons at Unity Church of Bonita Springs each spring.

The personnel change slightly from year to year, but the players are all regionally and nationally known performers. This year’s concert is at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, February 2, at the church on 28285 Imperial Parkway, Bonita Springs.

Tickets are $20, and advance reservations are necessary — the concert is always a sellout — at 239-947-3100.

Here's the roster for the 2012 Magnificent Seven:

Jerry Stawski, music director for Unity of Bonita Springs, plays regularly at the Ritz Carlton, Naples and The Ritz Carlton at Tiburon. He has played in concert with the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra and the Symphony of Southwest Florida and is co-leader of the Naples Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra. He has played in concert with such names as Keith Lockhart, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Kelli O'Hara, Michael Feinstein, Jeff Tyzik, Carla Valenti, Buddy Morrow and more. The multitalented Stawski also plays a TV character in "Around the Corner," a literacy program for children.

Lew Del Gatto, Tenor Sax, has been in demand for everything from jingles to films, jazz and television. He has been a saxophonist with the band on the NBC show "Saturday Night Live" Band for 14 years; played film music for "The Blues Brothers," "My Blue Heaven," "Naked Gun 2½," among others; and performed in concert with Tony Bennett, Gladys Knight, Aretha Franklin, John Lennon, Bette Midler and more. Dave Morgan, on vibe and vocals, has played throughout the tri-state area from small groups to venues such as the Homestead and Greenbrier. He has performed with the Bluefield State Big Band and been on the road with the Russ Morgan and Frankie Lester. He also has taught privately and been a clinician in local colleges and public schools.

Patricia Dean, drums and vocal. Dean, a Tampa native, has traveled the world with her own trio and worked with a good number of jazz legends, including Nat Adderley, Ira Sullivan, Whitey Mitchell, Bobby Militello and the late John LaPorta.

Glenn Basham, jazz violin and harmonica, has been a member of the University of Miami's Frost School of Music artist faculty since 1992 and the concertmaster of the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra since 1994. He also is the first violinist in the Bergonzi String Quartet, the quartet-in-residence at the Frost School of Music. As a jazz musician, Basham has performed with Ira Sullivan, Simon Salz and John Blake, and is featured on recordings with the Miami Saxophone Quartet and Skitch Henderson.

Kevin Mauldin-Bass is the principal bassist with the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra. A native of Memphis, he studied bass with Herman Burkhart, John Chiego and in Cincinnati with Frank Proto. His teaching responsibilities include a private studio with doublebass and electric bass students and the Hot Springs Music Festival as mentor and faculty member since 2007. Mauldin taught at the Brevard Music Center and also at the University of Miami from 2000 to 2010. When not performing with the Naples Philharmonic, Mauldin performs with jazz artists in Southwest Florida. He is also a member of the newly formed Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra.

Dan Miller, trumpet. Miller has played with the Woody Herman Orchestra; on a world tour with Harry Connick Jr.; and with Maynard Ferguson and Wynton Marsalis's Big Band. He has worked with Tom Jones, Jimmy McGriff and other jazz/rock stars. He has also taught and headed clinics for the Yamaha Music Corp. as a Yamaha performing artist and clinician.

Herb Bruce is "Mr. Versatile" of the trombone. Choose any style and he covers it with ease. He's worked with everyone from Big Tiny Little to Boots Randolph, to Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé, to the Backstreet Boys. He was the leader of the famous Main Street Rhythm Rascals at Walt Disney World and one of the leaders of the renowned Rosie O'Grady's Goodtime Jazz Band at Church Street Station in Orlando. Those of you familiar with the traditional jazz scene have heard him with the Dukes of Dixieland, Pepper & Fine Thyme, Bill Allred's Classic Jazz Band, and Igor's Jazz Cowboys. He has three solo CDs.

Who: The Magnificent Seven jazz concert starring Jerry Stawski, Lew Del Gado, Patricia Dean, Glen Basham, Dan Miller, Kevin-Mauldin Bass and Herb Bruce.

Where: Unity of Bonita Springs, 28285 Imperial Parkway (Livingston Road extension from Collier County), Bonita Springs

When: 2 p.m. Sunday, February 2

Admission: $20

Reservations: 239-947-3100

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