The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble

The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble

Profile:
NIU Jazz Ensemble is a Northern Illinois University orchestra established in 1969 by Ron Modell, which has long been considered one of the best college jazz bands in the world. The Orchestra participated in many international festivals and performed with such artists as Dizzy Gillespie, Louis Bellson, Clark Terry, Tito Puente and James Moody. Not to be confused with NIU Jazz Lab Band.

When Modell was assigned to create a jazz program at the University from scratch, he already had some experience: before joining the NIU, he successfully established a stage band at Southern Methodist University in Texas. NIU Jazz Ensemble played the first concert in October 1969, only six weeks after the launch. Under the talented leadership and with a strong cast of musicians, the orchestra quickly rose to the national fame. In the summer of 1977, NIU Jazz Ensemble joined Dizzy Gillespie as the featured performers at the annual conference of the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE) at Dallas.

In 1983, PBS aired a documentary called A Year in the Life of the Greatest College Jazz Band in America about the orchestra, which won two Chicago Emmy awards. NIU Jazz Ensemble traveled to Europe that summer and appeared at the famous Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland. The live recording of that concert was released in 1984. The ensemble performed at the 54th annual Midwest Music Clinic in Chicago with saxophonist Jimmy Heath as the guest artist, and at the 28th annual IAJE Conference in New York with trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. In the summer of 1996, the NIU Jazz Orchestra returned to the Montreux Jazz Festival as Quincy Jones big band with guest artists Phil Collins, Patti Austin, David Sanborn, Gerald Albright, Chaka Kahn, and James Morrison.

During the summer of 2001, the band performed at the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands, Jazz à Vienne Festival in France, and Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.
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Artist

The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble Discography Tracks

Albums

NIU-73 The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble, Ron Modell The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble, Ron Modell - A Salute To Jazz Education(LP, Album) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU-73 US 1973 Sell This Version
NIU 74-75 Northern Illinois Jazz Ensemble* Fly By Night(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU 74-75 US 1975 Sell This Version
NIU77-78 The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble Space Train(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU77-78 US 1978 Sell This Version
none The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble Magic Carpet Ride(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble none US 1980 Sell This Version
NIU-5 N.I.U. Jazz Ensemble*, Ron Modell N.I.U. Jazz Ensemble*, Ron Modell - The Sea Urchin(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU-5 US 1981 Sell This Version
NIU6 The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble Reflections Of You(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU6 US 1982 Sell This Version
NIU7 Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble* Live At Montreux(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU7 US 1984 Sell This Version
NIU8 The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble Jazz Lives(LP, Album) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU8 US 1985 Sell This Version
NIU9 The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble, Ron Modell The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble, Ron Modell - Peaceful Poet(LP) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU9 US 1987 Sell This Version
NIU 5392CD Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble* Kids Are Pretty People(CD, Album) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU 5392CD US 1991 Sell This Version
NIU5740CD Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble*, Ron Modell Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble*, Ron Modell - I'm Getting Cement All Over You(CD) NIU Jazz Ensemble NIU5740CD US 1993 Sell This Version
NIU78721 Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble*, Ronald Carter Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble*, Ronald Carter - We Came To Swing(CD) Not On Label NIU78721 US 2001 Sell This Version
none The Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble The Life Of Swing(CD) Not On Label none US 2004 Sell This Version
none NIU Jazz Ensemble* With Special Guest Conrad Herwig NIU Jazz Ensemble* With Special Guest Conrad Herwig - Swinging On The Road!(CD) Not On Label none US Unknown Sell This Version

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