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Old Dec 20, 2006, 02:46 PM
Eli Bennett Eli Bennett is offline
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Invited to perform at the 2007 GRAMMY Awards

I just wanted to announce that I've been selected a second year in a row to perform at the 2007 GRAMMY Awards Events in Los Angeles in Feb. As the GRAMMY Foundation's press released issued Dec. 13 describes, the Recording Acadamy selects thirty of the most talented highschool musicians from North America and invites them to perform with the Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles, which includes a GRAMMY Choir, GRAMMY Combo, and GRAMMY Big band. I've been honored to not only have been selected for the prestigious program a second year in a row, but the GRAMMY Foundation has asked me to be the first horn player in the history of the program (founded in 1989) to perfom with the GRAMMY Combo, making it a quartet. I've attached the Official GRAMMY press release below. Please check out my website to view my exciting GRAMMY Tour schedule at

Eli Bennett

For Immediate Release


SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Dec. 13, 2006) — The GRAMMY Foundation® announced today that 30 talented high school students from across North America have been selected for positions in the 2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz EnsemblesSM. Their selection launches them into the spotlight surrounding the 49th Annual GRAMMY® Awards, and provides them with unparalleled opportunities to rehearse and perform in front of some of music's biggest names. Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano have partnered with the GRAMMY Foundation since 2003 to provide students with this extraordinary musical experience.

The students, who represent 25 cities, 14 states as well as two Canadian provinces, will travel to Los Angeles for a weeklong musical adventure under the direction of Justin DiCioccio of the Manhattan School of Music and Dr. Ron McCurdy of the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music. The Ensembles will then perform at various GRAMMY Week events including public performances at Catalina Bar and Grill (Feb. 7) and the Vic (Feb. 9). As a grand finale, they will perform at the GRAMMY Celebration after party, as well as attend the 49th Annual GRAMMY Awards on Feb. 11 as guests of The Recording Academy®.

"The Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles provide the kind of once-in-a-lifetime adventure for young artists that can be transformative," said GRAMMY Foundation and Recording Academy President Neil Portnow. "These talented young vocalists and instrumentalists come to Los Angeles during GRAMMY Week to experience the power and possibility of music firsthand — playing with their peers from across the country and with GRAMMY-nominated artists in several GRAMMY Week events — and many say it is the most positive and influential career opportunity they've had to date."

Again this year, Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano have teamed up with the GRAMMY Foundation to sponsor the 2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles. "Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano have a longstanding commitment to music education and to demonstrating the lifelong benefits music can offer a student," said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitar. "Each year, the Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles program brings together gifted young musicians and rewards them with a chance to perform with some of the world's greatest talents."

The International Association for Jazz Education provides outreach to the music education community to help ensure the program’s success. The Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles selectees are eligible for more than $2 million in college scholarships made possible through the GRAMMY Foundation's college partners: Berklee College of Music, Manhattan School of Music, New School University and USC Thornton School of Music. In addition, every Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles program applicant and their high school will receive music product from MakeMusic!, including subscriptions to SmartMusic®, the complete music practice system by MakeMusic! Additionally, each selectee’s school will receive a professional cymbal courtesy of the Zildjian Company.

The GRAMMY Foundation was established in 1989 to cultivate the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture — from the artistic and technical legends of the past to the still unimagined musical breakthroughs of future generations of music professionals. The Foundation accomplishes this mission through programs and activities that engage the music industry and cultural community as well as the general public. The Foundation works in partnership year-round with The Recording Academy to bring national attention to important issues such as the value and impact of music and arts education and the urgency of preserving our rich cultural heritage. For more information, please visit

Gibson Guitar is known worldwide for producing classic models in every major style of fretted instrument, including acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins and banjos. Gibson's HD.6X-Pro Guitar System represents the biggest advance in electric guitar design in more than 70 years. Founded in 1894 in Kalamazoo, Mich., and headquartered in Nashville since 1984, Gibson Guitar Corp.'s family of brands now includes Epiphone, Dobro, Valley Arts, Kramer, Steinberger, Tobias, Slingerland, Maestro, Baldwin, Hamilton, Chickering and Wurlitzer. Visit Gibson Guitar at

The mission of the International Association for Jazz Education is to assure the continued worldwide growth and development of jazz and jazz education. As a part of that mission, the Association initiates programs which nurture and promote the understanding and appreciation of jazz and its heritage, provides leadership to educators regarding curricula and performance, assists teachers and practitioners with information and resources, and takes an active part in organizing clinics, festivals and symposia at local, regional, national and international levels. Presently, active memberships total upwards of 7,000 teachers, musicians, students, music industry representatives, and enthusiasts in 35 countries.

The 2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles are listed by each student's name, hometown, school, and instrument or voice:

2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Choir

Julia Easterlin Augusta, Ga. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School Soprano
Hilary Johnson Edmonds, Wash. Edmonds-Woodway High School Soprano
Denise Washington Miami, Fla. New World School of the Arts Alto
Emily Elbert Coppell, Texas Coppell High School Alto
Richard Saunders Simsbury, Conn. Simsbury High School Tenor
Michael Gullo Seattle, Wash. Roosevelt High School Tenor
Quentin Bethea Charlotte, N.C. Northwest School of the Arts Bass
Jonathan Dendy Sarasota, Fla. Booker High School Bass

2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Combo

Eli Bennett Vancouver, B.C. Heritage Christian Online School Tenor Sax
Yuma Sung Los Altos, Calif. Valley Christian High School Piano
Gregory Chaplin Hopedale, Mass. Milford High School Bass
Corey Fonville Virginia Beach, Va. Governors School for the Arts Drums

2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Band*********

John "Logan" Strosahl Seattle, Wash. Roosevelt High School Alto Sax
Hailey Niswanger West Linn, Ore. West Linn High School Alto Sax
Jonathan Ragonese New Cumberland, Pa. Trinity High School Tenor Sax
Jovan Alexandre Wallingford, Conn. Mark T. Sheehan High School Tenor Sax
John Palowitch Pleasanton, Calif. Amador Valley High School Baritone Sax
Chazz Canney Rutland, Vt. Northfield Mount Hermon School Trumpet
Nick Frenay Syracuse, N.Y. Manlius Pebble Hill School Trumpet
Aaron Kleinstub Chagrin Falls, Ohio Kenston High School Trumpet
Aaron Bahr Lafayette, Calif. Campolindo High School Trumpet
Charlie Fisher Seattle, Wash. Roosevelt High School Trumpet
Eric Miller Huntington Stn., N.Y. Walt Whitman High School Trombone
Isaac Kaplan Rossmoor, Calif. Long Beach Polytechnic High School Trombone
Joanna Sabater Miami, Fla. New World School of the Arts Trombone
Christopher Hernacki Castaic, Calif. Valencia High School Bass Trombone
Lee Dynes Tipp City, Ohio Tippecanoe High School Guitar
Christian Sands Orange, Conn. Amity Regional Senior High School Piano
Jeff Picker Beaverton, Ore. Arts and Communication Academy Bass
Adam Arruda Toronto, Ont. Humber College Community Music Sch. Drums

# # #

Media Contacts:
Christina Cassidy
GRAMMY Foundation
christina.cassidy AT grammy DOT com

Heather Lewandoski
Rogers & Cowan
hlewandoski AT rogersandcowan DOT com

For Gibson Guitar:
Caroline Galloway
caroline.galloway AT gibson DOT com
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Old Dec 21, 2006, 09:35 AM
Steve Bagnell Steve Bagnell is offline
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Congratulations, Eli!
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Old Dec 29, 2006, 06:59 PM
Shonwise Shonwise is offline
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Cool, way to go Eli!
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Old Mar 9, 2007, 10:30 PM
Eli Bennett Eli Bennett is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2006
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I had a fantastic time in LA for the 49th Annual GRAMMY Awards last month. I've posted video clips and photos on my website of some of the many performances.
I'm even mentioned in an article on GRAMMY.COM -
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Old Mar 10, 2007, 10:11 AM
Steve Bagnell Steve Bagnell is offline
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And you got two of the photos in the slide show in that article. I heard you may be playing at The Cellar this week - is that happening?
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Old Mar 10, 2007, 11:22 AM
Eli Bennett Eli Bennett is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Vancouver
Posts: 6
Yes, I'll be playing with the October Trio this Wednesday at the Cellar, subbing for Even Arntzen in the first set, and then we'll both be playing in the second set. The October Trio is the artist in residence this month at the cellar - every wednesday.
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