The Musicians of Octobop
Geoff Roach – Baritone, Alto, Tenor, Bass sax and Alto Flute. Geoff is a native of New Orleans where he first became addicted to great music, spicy foods, good times and still managed to obtain advanced degrees from Clemson University, the University of Missouri, and the University of Phoenix. Working in the United States and Europe, Geoff has performed with Mel Torme, Nelson Riddle, Tom Jones, Bob Hope, as well as many musicals, shows, and other productions. Geoff studied arranging and theory with David Baker, Don Haas, and Charles Barber. His primary influences in playing and writing include Gerry Mulligan, James Moody, Sam Butera, Bill Holman, Marty Paich, Nelson Riddle, and Henry Mancini. From 2005 through 2010, Geoff was also CEO of San Jose Jazz, producers of the San Jose Jazz Festival. He is still trying to create the perfect gumbo.
Jack Conway – Guitar. Starting on the guitar in 1962, Jack has studied with Bill Courtial, Jerry Hahn, Charles Gustavson, and Art Lande. Jack has played in many different groups and orchestras from folk groups, jazz groups and community theater. Among his influences are Groucho Marx, Pat Martino, Wes Montgomery, Father Guido Sarducci, Jim Hall, Freddie Greene and Alan Greenspan. Besides playing guitar in Octobop, Jack arranges and contributes his originals to the band library.
Matt Kesner – Soprano, Alto, Tenor Sax and Flute. Matt grew up in Southern California, began playing sax in high school, and studied with jazz and studio masters including John Rekovics, Lanny Morgan, and Joe Morillo. Matt has worked as a backup musician for Trini Lopez, Steve Allen, and Pete Barbutti. Matt was an active session player in Southern California recording a number of jingles and demo records. He has also worked as a musician with the tour companies of Annie Get Your Gun, The Fantastiks, 'Lil Abner, and Kiss Me Kate. Since moving to the bay area in 1998, he has returned to his first musical love, jazz.
Randy Smith – Trumpet and Flugelhorn. Randy, a native Californian, has played trumpet since 1960. A PhD from the University of California at San Diego, he has toured much of the United States and Europe playing in jazz, rock, and popular music groups. Randy also plays keyboards, and has written and arranged music for various ensembles.
Jon Schermer - Trombone. Jon grew up in St Louis, MO and started playing trombone in the 5th grade. After college he spent a few years playing music on cruise ships and moved to California in 1982. Before joining Octobop Jon played with Royal Society Jazz Orchestra, The Black Tie Jazz Orchestra, A Touch of Brass and Silicon Gulch Traditional Jazz Band.
Brian Brockhouse - Bass. Brian (the guy with the bass) grew up in the south -- primarily in New Orleans, with stints in Houston and Midland, Texas. As did so many of his contemporaries, he began playing guitar in his teens in order to meet girls. Eventually, rather than giving up guitar, he started playing bass in order to get gigs. He has lived in the Bay Area for more than twenty years, wielding both instruments in various combos, big bands, and pit orchestras. A recovering software engineer, he also teaches music, writes poetry and fiction, and occasionally works the game clock at his daughter's water polo games.
Dave Casini - Vibes. Dave has been playing music for 40 years including gigs for the SF Jazz Festival, San Jose Jazz Festival and Yoshi's SF and Yoshi's Oakland. He started on drumset, studying with Chuck Brown, then got his a BA in Music from Cal State Hayward in 1978 where he studied with Jack VanGeem of the SF Symphony. In the past 20 years he has studied jazz with Clark Suprynowicz at the Berkeley Jazz Workshop, with Dave Eshelman and Dann Zinn at CSUH, and at the Jazz School. He has participated in vibraphone workshops with Stefon Harris, Joe Locke and Ed Saindon. Besides playing with Octobop, Dave was a founding member of the group Frankenstein and plays regularly in Kurt Ribak' s groups and with Joel Dorham's Latin Jazz Octet.
Roddy Magallanes – Drums. Roddy started playing drums in 8th grade while in school in El Paso, Texas. Playing throughout high school and college in Texas and Colorado, Roddy has been in Silicon Valley for over 30 years. Along with playing drums in the Daddio's Big Band at De Anza College, Roddy and his wife Rowena are parents of Jessica, a trombonist, and Kendrick, a bass player.