Sun City Stomperz

A Dixieland Jazz Band

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About Sun City Stomperz

This band was formed in 2005 by Ernie Landes and Sid Gire in an effort to spread the joy of Dixieland Jazz to the folks in and around Sun City, Arizona. The present lineup has been together since 2009, and has been fortunate to appear at community events, retirement homes, local festivals and watering holes throughout the greater Phoenix area. They are well into their third year of regular performances at the Sunset Bistro at the Lakes restaurant in Westbrook Village, Peoria, Arizona. The Stomperz made a conscious decision to concentrate their repertoire on the music of the first three decades of the Twentieth Century. This period includes the very beginnings of the traditional jazz age, the rise and fall of the Storyville District of New Orleans, the first jazz recordings and the resulting global appreciation of this music. Because several of the members grew up listening to the music of Lu Watters’ San Francisco style jazz revival in the 1940’s, the Stomperz play many of his compositions as well. The music that Joe “King” Oliver produced during the “roaring twenties” formed the backbone of what we know today as Traditional Jazz. He introduced amazing musicians, some of whom, like Louis Armstrong, will live forever. His recordings were wildly successful, spreading the good news far and wide. It is for these reasons that the Stomperz dedicate their album to the memory of Lil Hardin, Louis Armstrong, and Joe “King” Oliver.

Lil, Louis and The King - The music of Joe "King" Creole Jazz Band

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Meet The Band

Great sound come from these gentlemen!

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Ernie Landes, Trombone Leader

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Ernie took up the trombone in high school and began jamming with neighborhood musicians. While attending Stanford University, he heard the bands of Bob Scobey and Turk Murphy, and spent many Friday afternoons playing for free beer in college hangouts.  He helped form a band named “South Bay Seven” which was popular in the San Jose area in the sixties.
In 1973 he was recruited by Frank Goulette to join the “Monterey Bay Classic Jass Band” of Santa Cruz, CA.  With this band he attended most of the West Coast jazz festivals and enjoyed an eight-year run of Sunday afternoon gigs at the Dream Inn in Santa Cruz.
Retiring to Washington State in 1995, Ernie joined the “Dukes of Dabob” which played for twelve years at the Valley Tavern near Dabob Bay. 

Barry Clapper - Clarinet/Soprano Sax.

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Barry started playing sax in high school but interrupted his musical life for military service.  He picked it up again in college, playing in several dance bands.  In 1969 Barry got involved in barbershop quartet singing.  He spent many years singing in competitions all over the Midwest and internationally.  In 1983, he was asked to become a Certified International Judge and spent 24 years judging competitions all over the world.  Around 2002 Barry was invited to play clarinet and got hooked on our kind of music.  He has played with some very good bands including the “Blue Ox Jazz Babies”, the “Mouldy Figs” and the “Turkey River All Stars” in and around Minnesota.  Barry enjoys playing clarinet, flute, soprano, alto, tenor and baritone saxes .  His outstanding vocal capabilities provide an extra kick to the music of the Stomperz.

Dan Reed - Trumpet

After majoring in music at Indiana University, Dan has devoted his entire career to his trumpet.  He has performed as a band member, band leader and featured soloist in a wide variety of situations.  At one point, he worked on cruise ships, traveling around the world for 20 years as a performer and music director for Princess Cruises.
He continues to study and teach trumpet, ever seeking to improve his own skills.  Dan’s mantra is, “You are never too good or too old to learn something new.”
Dan is excited to be with the Sun City Stomperz where he is expanding his knowledge of Traditional Jazz.  In addition to his fine talent on trumpet and flugelhorn, Dan’s enthusiasm and high energy draws fans wherever he goes.

Clark Chaffey - Drums

With extensive experience as a performer, conductor, and music educator, Clark Chaffee brings a unique blend of perspectives to the band. He is a graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy and has earned music degrees from University of Michigan and Northern Illinois University. NIU named him the 2014 Distinguished Alum from the the College of Visual and Performing Arts. He, his ensembles, and the Stevenson High School music PLC team have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Endowment for the Arts, the US Department of Education, the Kennedy Center, the Grammy Foundation, and the Conductors Guild.  His professional performing experience includes being a member of the Chicago Symphony Chorus; timpanist for the Chicago Civic Orchestra, Elgin Symphony, Rockford Symphony, and others; drummer for the University of Michigan Big Band; drummer/vocalist for jazz bands and his own jazz quartet. Since moving to the Phoenix area in 2013, Mr. Chaffee has been an active teacher, performer, and clinician. In addition to his role as conductor of the West Valley Wind Ensemble, he conducts the Surprise Pops Band, and he is Principal Viola in the Sun City Chamber Orchestra. He performs regularly (drummer/vocalist) in several West Valley jazz ensembles including the Sun City Stomperz (classic Dixieland).

Harry Schlafman – Banjo, Manager

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Starting with piano at age nine. Harry moved on to play violin, banjo, cornet, string bass and soprano sax.  He played banjo in a high school dixieland band, then co-founded the “Red Hot Stompers” at Cornell University.  In Ohio, he performed with the “Docs of Dixieland”, which appeared on national television.  Harry spent about 25 years with the “Hermit Traditional Jazz Band”, where he shared leadership with Ted Witt, an internationally famous clarinet player.  Harry also appeared with Ralph Grugel’s “ Eagle Jazz Band”.   Moving to Northern California in the 1970s, Harry a joined a San Francisco jazz band, playing banjo and second cornet at jazz festivals mostly around the Western United States.   Here in the Phoenix area, Harry has played with the “Desert City Six” and is now with the “Sun City Stomperz” as First Banjo and Manager.

Dean Henson - Tuba

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Dean started playing  in 1944 at Odessa Jr. High School in Odessa, Texas.   Upon graduation in 1949 Dean enlisted in the US Navy and served as a Sonarman on a destroyer for three and a half years during the Korean Conflict. College and working interfered with music and he did not pick up a horn for about 30 years.  After going to a Christmas Tuba Fest in Denver , Colo. the music bug bit him, and his wife Joann brought home a tuba from the school she was teaching at and he started playing in community bands in the Denver area.  In 1994 he started playing with the Sun City Concert Band and the Desert Brass when it was first formed.  He joined the Sun City Stomperz when it was formed and continues to this day.  There is no greater joy in music than playing Dixieland Jazz.

Lloyd Shaffer - Piano

Lloyd began the study of classical piano at the age of six, but when, at 13, he was booked for his first professional dance band gigIn his two year stint in the army Lloyd played with the 221st Army Band as a military musician, leading a bugle corps and performing on the Transportation Corps’ TV show. He worked as a union musician in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and in the Catskill Mountains of New York until moving with his day job in investment management sales to Seattle, Washington. On retiring to Phoenix, he came back to music, playing for a very short time with a punk rock  group, and then various dance bands in the Valley, including the Max Pillar Orchestra, the Speakeasy Society Orchestra, the Jack Merlin Band and Cheryl Stevens’ Vintage Jazz Band. He has also performed with the Desert City Six, the 52d Street Jazz Band, the Ken Taylor Legacy Band, the Swing Kings and until 2016, with his own 10-piece dance band, “Déjà Vu”. Lloyd is married to the talented entertainer Deborah Offenhauser, and leads her backing trio on synthesizer in her “Keyboard and Komedy” shows.

Celia Farran
Celia Farran
" Sunny " Alexander
” Sunny ” Alexander
Cheryl Thurston
Cheryl Thurston

Guest Stars

From time to time we bring in some great talent…These are a recent few!

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Sun City Stomperz, Sun Ciy, Arizona
Booking: For information on availability, bookings and/or CDs,
please contact the Sun City Stomperz Business Manager at 623-214-8443.
Email:
info@suncitystomperz.com

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