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Jack Kelle

Jack Kelle started playing drums at the age of twelve. He gained experience quickly with the school band, orchestra and stage band. Jack gained professional experience that same year performing on drum set with his father’s wedding/party band Saratoga, Playing in orchestra pit bands, at events with local college bands, and at bars and clubs with various local acts. Jack’s experience led to connections with many professional musicians at a young age.

Jack could always put a band together in a hurry for that last minute party in high school. “I had a list of about twenty professional working bass players, who would come out and play a party if they weren’t working. I’d play drums and I could always get a guitar player from the Delmar Guitar Army(Delmar is notorious for its high percentage of guitar playing public) to play. I began to understand which musicians would work well together and which ones wouldn’t.”

During this time Jack also gained experience teaching drum lessons with students ranging in age from five to twenty years old. At sixteen Jack began to pick up his brother’s guitar at first just messing around, but eventually started to study theory and reading as well as technique of various styles.

Jack gained more musical insight at eighteen when his mother bought him a 4 track tape recorder. His talents on drums and guitar were given a chance to merge, and he gained a deeper understanding of the complexities of a rhythm section. As he realized he needed to add bass guitar to his recordings, Jack began to use his father’s bass to do the job himself, adding one more instrument to his arsenal.

During this time jack’s professional career on drums was growing more diverse to include rock, jazz, R&B, blues, funk, big band, country, and fusion.

At twenty one Jack began to study piano. This opened up new concepts and understanding in performing, teaching, relating to the other instruments and communicating with other musicians.

In his twenties Jack began hosting weekly open jam sessions at various locations, and began performing under his own name, the Jack Kelle Jazz Trio, Jack Kelle Quartet, Jack Kelle Band, playing several styles of music depending on the event. Jack also began working as a session drummer in local recording studios. He was found to be proficient on the drums, possessing and ability to be versatile and play solid grooves to a click track, but was also an asset for studio creativity and production advice. Jack also served as a source of communication between “schooled” and “unschooled” musicians. An “Interpreter” for the two languages, and has the ability to double on other instruments.

Jack bought an alto saxophone in August, 2000 and has considered it a serious instrument of study ever since. As well as a welcome expression of creativity, it has also furthered a kind of kinship with other saxophonists.

Jack currently teaches drums, guitar, piano, bass, and saxophone lessons. His students get the unique opportunity to perform on their instrument while Jack plays along on another instrument. Most students find this very helpful and enjoyable. He is also actively performing and recording as a side man and band leader for a number of reputable bands all over the country.