Together since 1971.
Tony Pringle – Cornet, Vocals, Musical Director
Cites King Oliver as a major inspiration with a nod to George Mitchell of the Red Hot Peppers, Kid Howard and Henry “Red” Allen. Along with his infectious laugh, growly vocals and amusing, off-hand commentaries, his style is easily recognizable for that distinctive, plaintive tone that smacks of Mutt Carey in the 1940s. Formed the Druids JB which became the resident band at The Cavern in his native Liverpool (later to become the home base of The Beatles). Immigrated to the United States in 1967 and within two weeks was playing with the two Stans – Vincent and McDonald - in the Exit JB. Has worked for computer companies in research and development.
Peter Bullis – Banjo
Most banjoists in a trad band are tempted to gain attention by unflaggingly plunking chords for 16 bars, loud and fast. With admirable restraint, Peter settles for a relaxed 4/4 true melodic banjo sound. His first exposure to jazz was as a Dartmouth College junior when he visited New Orleans and heard George Lewis, Paul Barbarin and Papa Celestin, after which he joined, recorded with and managed the Indian Chiefs. Attended Harvard Graduate School of Design to become an architect and developed a special interest in church architecture. In the 60s, performed with the Salty Dogs South in Raleigh, N.C.
Stan(ford) Vincent – Trombone
Put together his first jazz band as a junior high school student and took lessons from the principal trombonist of the Boston Symphony. At Brown University, played with the Brunotes, a Condon-style band. Was a member of Jean and Doc Kittrell’s Chicago Stompers, Tex Wyndham’s Red Lion Jazz Band, the Jazz Doctors and Exit Jazz Band that featured banjoist Gil Roberts. Said to have the best ear for chords in the band, he is editor/publisher of TheEducationalRegister.com, a guide to private schools and camps.
Billy Novick – Alto and Soprano Sax, Clarinet, Vocals, Business Manager
Originally from Long Island, and the only full-time musician, started playing the clarinet in the fourth grade and later took oboe lessons, but switched back to the clarinet when he broke his wrist playing football. His college career took him to Carleton College in Minnesota, Berklee School of Music, New England Conservatory and UMass-Boston. Has always had a great love of playing different styles – all types of jazz, blues, pop, ethnic (Brazilian, Celtic) and classical. His versatility keeps him busy teaching, composing, arranging, recording, touring and orchestrating TV and feature films.
Bob Pilsbury – Piano, Vocals
Played clarinet in high school and college (Dartmouth) and led a 58-member Army marching band while stationed in the Philippines and Korea. Studied classical piano at the New England Conservatory of Music and prides himself on having perfect pitch. In the 1950s, was the intermission pianist at Jimmy Ryan’s in New York City and occasionally sat in with such greats as Willie “The Lion” Smith at Stuyvesant Casino and Central Plaza. Moved back to Boston for a long stint with Excalibur JB and studied at Harvard to become a psychologist.
Herb Gardner – Piano
Soon after moving to New York in 1963, Herb Gardner began touring with Wild Bill Davison, Kenny Davern and Dick Wellstood as well as becoming a regular at the Metropole, Jimmy Ryan's and Eddie Condon's nightclubs. During the '60's and 70's he appeared with virtually all of the classic jazz musicians in the New York City area such as Roy Eldridge, Gene Krupa, Henry "Red" Allen, Bobby Hackett, Jimmy Rushing, Doc Cheatham, Max Kaminsky and even Wingy Manone. For many years he served as co-leader of Vince Giordano's Nighthawks, playing for the inauguration of George Bush, Bill Clinton's victory party and countless other society affairs.
Cornelis Hans “Pam” Pameijer – Drums
A native of Indonesia, Pam’s first drum set was fashioned from herring barrels covered with plastic sheeting. Played with several bands in The Netherlands before moving to the United States in 1969 to attend dental school at the University of Rochester. A year later, came to Boston to complete his specialty and earn his doctorate at Boston University. Sat in just once before becoming the regular drummer for Sancton’s Black Eagle JB. Has an international reputation for his work in dental research.
Bill Reynolds – Drums
Bill is apt to be on drums as frequently these days as is Pam. Is an alumnus of Berklee and the Navy School of Music where he was percussion teacher and drummer for the renown Faculty Lab Band. Has performed all over the world with varied artists and recorded extensively. A sampling of his movie-TV soundtrack and jingle credits as a studio artist include Seabiscuit, The Honeydripper, This Old House and Eight Men Out (both of which were orchestrated by Billy Novick), Sex in the City, Ally McBeal and the 2006 Academy Awards. Has been teaching at the University of Connecticut for 22 years.
Jesse Williams - Bass
The band’s newest member, Jesse was introduced to the rhythmic counterpoint of tradition New Orleans jazz by his parents as he was growing up. At age 14, was attracted to Ray Brown which led him to Oscar Pettiford, Jimmy Blanton and finally Pops Foster. “These guys all had a great musical pulse as well as a heavy dose of melody.” Learned how to solo by transcribing Satchmo’s singing to the bass. Has a B.A. in performance from Berklee and teaches at several Boston-area private schools as well as Berklee’s summer program. Has recorded two Grammy and six W.C. Handy-nominated albums, performed at Lincoln Center, and appeared on the Sesame Street TV show.
Jim Guttmann - Bass
From smoky dives to Carnegie Hall, from Amsterdam's Concertgebouw the Cambridge's folk club Passim, Jim Guttmann has had a performance career spanning over 30 years and many musical idioms. A member of the legendary string band Cheap Trills in the '70s, he joined the Klezmer Conservatory Band at its inception in 1980 and as a member of the band has performed and recorded with Itzhak Perlman and Joel Grey. He is a founding member of the Really Eclectic String Quartet and has worked with nationally renowned entertainers and musicians, including the legendary Eartha Kitt, Mark Murphy, western swing legend Tiny Moore, blues masters Johnny Shines and James Cotton, the new acoustic music stars Matt Glaser and Russ Barenberg, the Boston version of Jaki Byard's Apollo Stompers and the Artie Shaw Band. For many years he performed with the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and in 1999, premiered Gunther Schuller's duet for trumpet & contrabass "Fantastical Colloquy." In 1986 he served as the musical director and bassist for Tufts University Jazz Festival's Soul to Soul: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin. Along with Richard Stolzman and Dan Stepner he was part of the Grammy Award winning ensemble on Yehudi Wyner's "The Mirror".
©Copyright, The New Black Eagle Jazz Band