MCC-Penn Valley Music Department
3201 Southwest Trafficway,
Kansas City, Mo., 64111-22764
Science/Technology, room 002-A
Clarence Smith oversees the music department at Metropolitan Community College-Penn Valley campus, where he directs a jazz combo and jazz ensemble, and teaches percussion, music appreciation and jazz history. He has also been a director of the Kansas City Youth Jazz program for seven years. Prior to his appointment at MCC, Smith taught band in the Marshall, Mo., public schools and at the Paseo Academy of Fine and Performing Arts High School in the Kansas City, Mo. School district. His Paseo jazz bands earned numerous I ratings and won many regional and national jazz competitions, and were invited to perform at the Smithsonian Institute and at the Kennedy Center. In 2000, Smith was named “High School Jazz Educator of the Year” by Downbeat Magazine, and in 2003 he was selected as a Music Fellow at Northwestern University’s School of Music. Smith has performed throughout much of the US and Canada and is currently playing drums with several groups in the Kansas City area. He is the director of Kansas City's annual 18th and Vine Jazz Festival, and coordinates the education component of the Bob James Jazz Festival held each year in Marshall, Mo. Smith holds a B.A. in music education from Central Methodist University in Fayette, Mo., and a master's degree in arts education from Lesley University, Boston.
Bill McKemy is a Kansas City based bassist, composer and bandleader. McKemy has had his music featured on NPR’s All Songs Considered and in the touring art installation America: Now and Here. He has performed and recorded with numerous artists and groups, including John Abercrombie, Alaturka, Matt Chamberlain, Khan Jamal, the Philadelphia Jazz Composers Forum, and Foto Rodriguez y Su Orquesta Unica.
McKemy is a frequent collaborator with Mark Southerland, the T.J. Martley Trio, the Rich Wheeler Quartet and many of Kansas City’s top jazz and creative improvisation artists. He has released three CD’s of original music; Duende - named one of the Kansas City Star’s Top Ten of 2002, Om Nidrah - named Best Local Jazz CD of 2003 by Pitch Weekly, and Perfumed Nightmare-Underpass an eleven piece avart-garde collective.
McKemy is instructor of double bass, electric bass and tuba at Ottawa University. He is also rhythm section clinician and jazz combo instructor for the Metropolitan Jazz Workshop.
Stan Kessler is a Trumpet/Flugelhorn player, band leader, clinician, and educator in the Kansas City area. He also does extensive writing and arranging for small groups. Stan also plays drums and hand percussion. He is currently leading The Sons of Brasil (23 yrs.) , The Stan Kessler Quartet/Trio/Duo (24yrs.), Stan Kessler's TV(6) , HoraceScope(4) and The Uncertainty Principle(2) and Parallax (2). He maintains adjunct positions at The University of Missouri at Kansas City and Missouri Western State College in jazz trumpet, theory and improvisation, and music business classes.
For 4 years, Stan has been a faculty member of Kansas City Youth jazz, now The Metropolitan Jazz Workshop if Kansas City. He has been teaching jazz improvisation and theory privately for 25 years.
From 1968 to 1970, he was principal trumpet in the K.C. Youth Symphony. In 1970, Stan was awarded first chair all- state trumpet in Kansas. He attended Kansas University and Wichita State University from 1970 to 1972.
For the last 33 years, Stan has been a member of every kind of group you could imagine. He has lead such bands as Stan Kessler and the Flat Five, Eightball, and Baby Leroy. His expertise includes jazz, R&B, funk, and all latin genres, especially brasilian and afro-cuban.
In 1980, Stan was assistant director of the jazz ensemble and combo instructor at UMKC. He was voted best trumpet player and leader of the best jazz band (SOBs) in KC by the Pitch readers poll. He has appeared in concert with Clark Terry, Paquito D'Rivera, Gary Foster, Karrin Allyson, Steve Cardenas, Kevin Mahogany, Bobby Watson, John Clayton, Kim Park, Joe Cartwright and many others.
Chris Burnett is an active professional alto saxophonist, composer, recording artist and educator who began his active career at the age of 18 years old when he was selected by audition and accepted for musical service as a performing artist with the US Army Bands Career Program, where he performed and toured with several noteworthy professional US military band organizations for audiences at numerous locations in the continental United States and overseas. Subsequently, Mr. Burnett has continued as a life-long learner while performing music professionally since 1974.
Born in Olathe, Kansas, he was ultimately raised in Paola after his family had traveled extensively in early childhood and lived at such places as: France, Michigan and Colorado. His studies in instrumental music began seriously under clarinetist, James R. Fuchs. Mr. Fuchs was the local school band director who exposed him to professional saxophone players like Charles Molina and Gary Foster during those formative years. He has studied with numerous significant teachers and at the Armed Forces School of Music, Webster University, Columbia College, Berklee College of Music, and American University.
Mr. Burnett is a former director of the Jazz Ensemble Program at Missouri University of Science and Technology (formerly University of Missouri-Rolla); a former director of the NATO Jazz Ensemble; and, a former featured performing member of the Faculty Jazz Ensemble of the Armed Forces School of Music that was under the direction of Maurice Williams, Jr. (former leader of the Army Blues Jazz Ensemble).
Today, Chris Burnett has established a credible reputation as one of the finest alto saxophonists of his generation and is considered among Kansas City\'s most respected jazz artists. He has two commercial CD recordings available on the Artists Recording Collective label. He remains active as a performing artist and is an in-demand jazz clinician, conducting honors ensembles and adjudicating at festival events.
Mr. Burnett’s Professional Memberships include: American Federation of Musicians (Kansas City Local 34-627), The Recording Academy (GRAMMY Voting Member), and the US Army Career and Alumni Program (ACAP). He serves as a member of the Kansas City Youth Jazz Advisory Council, and was elected as a Board Member (At-Large) of Kansas Citys historic Mutual Musicians Foundation. Most recently, he was asked to serve on the Board of Directors of the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra (KCJO).
Also an award-winning trained composer, Mr. Burnett has been a writer-affiliate of Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) since 1984. In August 2011, Mr. Burnett was hired as the Marketing and Communications Manager of the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City. He also maintains a private studio of students.
Mr. Burnett plays Selmer (Paris) saxophones and Leblanc (France) clarinets exclusively.
Jason Goudeau, trombonist, arranger, and composer is a native of Houston, Texas, where he attended the highly acclaimed High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. He studied jazz under the direction of Dr. Robert Morgan and has performed with many artists throughout the past two decades. He was awarded the first “George Salisbury Memorial Scholarship” given at UMKC in 1985 and earned his Bachelor of Music in Music Performance from UMKC in 1989. He has performed with many local musicians. He is a 1st call musician in Kansas City and working on his debut project: “Trimmed & Burning”.