From the bayou to the Windy City, jazz lives in the roots of America.

Explore those roots at GCC with beginner or advanced lessons in classical and jazz styles for both music majors and general enthusiasts. Performance opportunities include participation in jazz combos and big bands.  

We encourage students who wish to transfer course credit to a university music program to contact the Jazz Program Director before enrolling in any classes.

Bad Bama Betty

Jazz Courses Offered

Jazz Big Bands MUP163

This award-winning jazz ensemble is a 17- piece ensemble with traditional big band instrumentation.  They play a variety of selections from standard classics to the modern writers of today.  In addition to many performances in the community, the GCC Big Band has had the honor of finishing first at the nationally recognized Fullerton Jazz Festival in California.

Jazz Combos MUP163

This course offers students the opportunity to work in a small jazz setting with an emphasis on standard and contemporary jazz styles. These intimate ensembles are an excellent vehicle to enhance jazz improvisation skills.

Jazz Improvisation MUP164

Theoretical and performance skills in many styles of jazz improvisation.

Auditions for Performance Opportunities

Each semester the Jazz band holds auditions, which can include demonstrations of:

  • Scales: Two-octave chromatic scale + all major scales.  Scales should be played in eighth notes at a minimum tempo of quarter note=100.
  • Sight-reading: A short excerpt will be given to assess your ability to sight-read.
  • Improvisation (optional): A B flat or F blues Jaimey Aebersold accompaniment track will be provided to allow you to "show your stuff." If you double on woodwinds bring the double(s).
  • Download, Bring and Perform at performance tempo, the appropriate sheet music from the downloads section on this page.
    • Drummers will be asked to demonstrate various styles in addition to the sight-reading and prepared piece.