This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band


Rex Merriweather · trumpet · flugelhorn · trombone
Rex Merriweather

An award-winning composer, Rex has been fortunate to have some amazing teachers such as Barbara Buehlman, Donald E. Casey, Neil Dunlap, Bruce Mack and Clint "Pops" McLaughlin. Rex has opened for and played with such notable artists as Maynard Ferguson, Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, Michael Drake, The World's Most Dangerous Band (David Letterman), Buddy Miles, Stan Kenton, Steve Morse, Wayne Foster, Lou Rawls, Arturo Sandoval and the Ray Charles Band, to name a few. In addition to his exciting live performances, Rex has also been seen and heard in commercials for Datsun and Statewide Insurance and has been featured in the films "Sharkskin 6" and "Lights" as well as television's "Ally McBeal", Judy Tenuta's HBO special, and with Chef Guy Fieri on the Food Channel. He is also leader of his own big band, "This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band", whose debut CD has garnered international acclaim. Rex Merriweather is proud to be sponsored by Curry Mouthpieces.


Dan Heffernan · alto sax · soprano sax · flute
Dan Heffernan

Dan Heffernan has performed and/or recorded with: Shelby Lynne, Mary Wilson & The Supremes, Peter Cetera (CHICAGO), Kenny Cetera (CHICAGO), Danny Seraphine (CHICAGO), Gene Simmons (KISS), Lee Oskar (WAR), Johnnie "Guitar" Watson, Emily King, Roy Gaines, Lucky Peterson, Alan King, Buddy Greco, Edie Adams, Robert Goulet, Ben Vereen, Melba Moore, Branscombe Richmond & The Renegade Posse, Sylvie Vartan. He has appeared on the TV shows "Gene Simmons Family Jewels" and "My Fair Wedding".


Jeff Gucciardo · alto sax · flute
Jeff Gucciardo

Jeff grew up in Florida and majored in Music at the University of Florida studying saxophone and piano. After college Jeff worked at the Late Show with David Letterman and continued performing throughout New York City. He has performed at numerous locations, including the Montreux Jazz Festival in Montreux, Switzerland, Carnival Cruise Lines and touring the United States with pianist Jim Brickman for his annual Christmas tour.


Steve Mann · alto sax · tenor sax · soprano sax · clarinet · flute
Steve Mann

Steve was born in New York City and came up playing with the top R&B bands in Manhattan during the late 1960's. He has performed with top artists such as Rod Stewart and King Curtis and toured and recorded with numerous other talented performers throughout his career. After relocating to the west coast, Steve has been working steadily in the Los Angeles music scene. Currently, he is playing with Rex Merriweather "This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band", two jazz quintets (Street Smart, Jocelyn Michelle B3 Quintet), and a 6-piece blues band (Blue Vice).


Andy Najera · tenor sax · clarinet · flute
Andy Najera

I have worked as a freelance musician performing weekly at various venues and corporate events for 40 years! My services have been used on movie and record recordings with Warner Bros. and Columbia Records. And with others around the world through my website, where you can hear examples of my saxophone playing: I have also worked as a musician most recently at the Geffen Playhouse. As a player performer in Louis Prima and Keely Smith "Live At The Sahara", I have recorded with Sam More, Malo, Johnny Rivers and have performed in France with various blues artists.


Rial Gallagher · baritone sax · bass clarinet · flute
Rial Gallagher

Rial is a busy Los Angeles based saxophonist. Besides holding down the Bari chair in Rex Merriweather's This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band, Rial currently can be found playing with Strokeland Record Artists "Barela" and with L.A. indie music scene's The Abe Lincoln Story. When not playing with these acts he can be found playing in many southern California jazz big bands. His recent past includes stints with Blues Bettie, The Marc Why Group and The Paul Cacia Jazz Orchestra. One of original members of the Tuscaloosa Horns, Rial has played around the Southeast in various jazz, funk and R&B bands.


Evan Mackey · trombone
Evan Mackey

Evan Mackey is a trombone player based out of Los Angeles. He studied music through High School and College acheiving his Bachelors Degree in Music from California State University Northridge. He studied trombone under the excellent tutelage of Tom Whaley, William Booth, and Alex Iles. He has performed with Jac Ttanna and the Horn Dogs, The Jimmy McConnell Orchestra, The Clyde Resinger Big Band, The Joe Vento Jazz Orchestra, The Buzz Maddox Septet, and Dirk Fischers Nonet. His album credits include recordings of CSU Northridge ensembles throughout his eight years as a student there and "We Are America" a single that was recorded to raise money for families affected by the September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center.


Carlos Luna · trombone

Carlso has played with James Brown, Martha and the Vandellas, Wilson Pickett, Captain Beefheart, and The Whispers. Besides being a recording and performing trombonist, Carlos is also a music producer, composer, arranger, orchestrator, and music director. He has worked on "Late Night" starring David Letterman, and "Late Night" starring Joan Rivers, and with luminaries such as Jerry Goldsmith, Asdru Sierra, Tito Gomez, Michael Sembello, and for labels such as Warner Brothers.


Jeanne Carr · trombone

Jeanne Carr is an Actor's Equity, Broadway Touring Company Actress who starred at the age of 5 as Gretle in the "Sound of Music" with Florence Henderson, and Bob Wright. After years of other shows with various stars and a lot of singing and dancing she picked up the Trombone in the fourth grade. By senior year she won first chair at Allstate. She was also the first chair of the 76 Trombones in "The Music Man" with Tony Randal at the St. Louis Muny. After following her dreams to Hollywood she again found her Trombone offering her opportunities such as a recurring part as a student trombonist on the series, "Fame," and a National Tri-Star Tour with "The New Christy Minstrels." As an Actress, she's appeared on Soaps such as "The Young & The Restless," "Santa Barbara," Rituals," guest starred on "A Different World," and starred in various commercials. Jeanne moved to New York to raise two beautiful musicians of her own and found her way back into music when she subbed for a big band called, "The Melody Makers." She soon began singing for the band as well and over the next 10 years she played and sang with "The Georgie Wonder Band, " and The Swing Docs." She sang and played her bone at three Governor's Balls in New York, and sang in a jazz trio with the great Dr. John Angerosa, and Norm Frederick. Finally, the empty nest syndrome brought Jeanne west again to Hollywood to pursue her passion; Acting, Improv and Stand-up comedy. Something was missing though, the bone. Jeanne learned that the great "Glen Roberts Band" played every Thursday at Viva Cantina and again started subbing to get her lip back in the door! From there, the Great Rex Merriweather asked her to sub for the most exciting band ever, "This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band!" Jeanne is finally home again with a great wealth of mentors as she brings her bone back the way it has always brought her along for the ride.


Matt Fleming · bass trombone
Matt Fleming

Trombonist, all styles, tenor and bass trombone. Performances with Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, Shirley Jones, Tony Tennille, Herb Jefferies, Jerry Vail, Eddie Santiago, and numerous local big bands, principle trombone with San Fernando Valley Symphony, Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra with Bill Tole, and various civic light operas.


Rob Sack · trumpet · flugelhorn
Rob Sack

Rob Sack, is a veteran trumpet player from Agoura Hills who has played with the greats like Harry James and Alvino Rey, and also played with the Mike Vax Big Band in San Francisco. Rob began his storied year career with a bachelor of music degree from the highly respected music program at California State University in Northridge. He is also a member of the Late Night Big Band and many others here in Los Angeles.


Didier (Didi) Reyes · trumpet

Didi has played with such ensembles as the Orquesta Sinfonica de Columbia, the Orquesta Filarmonica de Bogota, and the Banda Sinfonica de Bogota, and performed for Azamara Club Cruises and Celebrity Cruises, Inc. He has recorded two solo albums, "Trompeta Enamorada" and "Trumpeta Mexicana". An excellent trumpet player, fast and reliable, Didi was graduated from the National University of Columbia.


David Stassel · trumpet
David Stassel

Upon graduation from high school in Indiana, was accepted to study trumpet under William Adam at the Indiana University School of Music. While studying with Mr. Adam, earned an economics/political science B.A. and, subsequently, an MBA. After concluding a four-decade corporate and international banking career, resumed playing trumpet in 2016. Currently playing with a number of bands and serve as a member of the Executive Committee of the Los Angeles Police Department Band.


Kendall Wallace · trumpet · flugelhorn
Kendall Wallace

Kendall Wallace received a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education from Wichita State University, then went on to study jazz at North Texas State University, where he met and subsequently married his wife Diane. He was a sales rep for Harmonia Mundi USA, a record label and distributor of fine classical music. His job brought Kendall and Diane to Los Angeles. Kendall plays trumpet and flugelhorn, and is an accomplished composer and arranger. He has arranged music for shows in the Los Angeles area, including "Louis & Keely: Live at the Sahara," and "Hoboken to Hollywood." Kendall also plays in several bands around town. You may have seen him as Santa Claus if you've been good boys and girls!


Jerry Scott · guitar

Jerry Scott Edelnant (he usually goes by "Jerry Scott" because even he mis-pronounces his last name) has held down the guitar chair for the past 6 years with Rex Merriweather's 20-piece jazz/rock/blues "This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band".  Jerry has spent many years playing in rock, jazz, blues, pop and several big bands, and met Rex as a member of another big-band.  One day at a gig, Rex told Jerry he was thinking of starting a rock-style big-band and wanted to play lots of Spy and TV show themes, and asked if he was interested in joining?  Jerry – who as a child used to record TV show themes on a portable cassette recorder and listen to them for enjoyment – jumped at the chance and hasn't looked back.  Jerry is also a gifted guitarist/composer.  He is on a lifelong quest to find more of his acoustic guitar's secret notes with which to craft beautiful instrumentals that speak to your heart.  He says his music is calming and healing and is cheaper than therapy and safer than voodoo.  Jerry can be heard playing his uplifting soundtracks for special events around town.


Marco Monahan · keyboards
Marco Monahan

Marco Monahan is a relative newcomer to the band, but has been playing, composing and arranging since he was three. To be fair, his early arrangements weren't that great, being mainly re-workings of the classical assignments given to him by his much-consternated piano teacher ("What are you doing?! That's Mozart! You can't rewrite Mozart!" – "But I fixed it!"). He's been pretty much carrying on like that ever since: Top 40 bands, dance bands, rock bands, funk bands, combos, pit bands, big bands, pops orchestras, record dates, TV, film, theme park ride music, Europe, yada yada yada, This Ain't Your Daddy's Big Band.  Marco is also an award-winning Multimedia Generalist, working in audio, video, graphics, motion graphics, and the written word. Additionally, he claims to be something of a web designer. [As it happens, he did this website, so if you manage to get any complaints to the webmaster, it'll be him that ignores you.]
Marco's Soundclick page


Rick Guetschow · bass

Based in Los Angeles, Rick Guetschow has been playing bass since the age of 13 and began his professional career not long after. He has recorded or performed with such artists as Alan Paul, Tanya Tucker, Jack Gafford, Tony-winner Levi Kreis, Travis Howard, Amy Cook, Zara, The Mike Acosta Orchestra, Dennis Tufano, Gerald Veasley's Bass Bootcamp, the touring production of Ain't Misbehavin', and many others. Adept on both electric and upright bass, Rick brings his unique sensibilities and background to all types of music.


Chris Ross · drums

Chris Ross is a drummer, producer, vocalist and percussionist living in the Los Angeles area. He has toured and recorded with Maria Muldaur, Coco Montoya, Lyle Lovette, Mark Chestnutt, Kenny Loggins, John Waite, Three Dog Night, Grammy Award winner Pete Anderson, and Hall of Fame singer Sam Moore. Chris has also worked as a house producer for Delta entertainment (the former 4th largest U.S. independent label) with his CD's sold at all major retailers including Costco, Target & Best Buy. He has produced CD's in almost every style: jazz, rock, blues, big band, reggaeton & holiday music. Chris has also worked on multiple theater performances, playing drums, percussion, singing and sometimes acting at such performances as "Atlanta" (Geffen Playhouse), "I Love My Wife" (Brentwood Theatre) and the "Simply Shakespeare" Fundraiser with Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, at the Shakespeare Center of LA.


Al Person · percussion · drums
Al Person

Music performance/industry experience: Drum Corps International Anaheim Kingsmen, Snare (1985)  ·  Dos Pueblos High School Marching and Jazz, Dr. Ike Jenkins, Director (1985-1988)  ·  Drum Corps International Velvet Knights Drum and Bugle Corps, Tenor Line (1987-1991)  ·  Santa Barbara City College Wind Ensemble and Jazz, Dr. Charles Woods, Director (1989-1991)  ·  Drum Corps International solo competition, Tenor Drums, 8th place (1990)  ·  CSU Northridge Percussion/Music Industry, Joel Leach, Director/Chair (1996-1999)  ·  CSU Northridge Jazz, Gary Pratt, Director (1998)  · Hopeless Records, GM (1998-Present)  ·  Square, rock band (1999-Present)  ·  CSU Northridge, guest Instructor Music Industry, Joel Leach and Carey Christensen, Chair (2000-Present)  ·  USC Music Business, guest Lecturer, Paul Young, Instructor (2011-Present). · Square's MySpace page



Christine Merriweather
Christine Chaulsett

"Born in East LA!" Christine Aparicio, daughter of prominent Latin/Jazz drummer and timbalero, Eddie Aparicio. At age 14 began studying with famed jazz vocalist/ artist/composer; Jeri Southern. Later by Gene Byram in Hollywood. At the age of 15, auditioned and was accepted by the "Young Americans"singing group, (Thank you Carolyn De Merjian!). Appeared on many national television shows including: The Ed Sullivan Show, Red Skelton, and The Junior Miss Pageant. Christine recorded several albums with the group and was a featured soloist at Disneyland and other large venues such as the Century Plaza Hotel, The Los Angeles Music Center and the Schubert Theatre. Christine currently performs with several Big Bands and Swing bands in and around the Los Angeles area. Visit her website where you can purchase and hear samples of her new CD entitled "More..."


Don Lucas
Don Lucas

DON LUCAS migrated to Hollywood from Boston, Massachusetts after a two year International Tour with the Glenn Miller Orchestra as Lead Vocalist opening for Mel Torme, Rosemary Clooney, Jerry Vale and Teresa Brewer, Carol Channing, Bobby Rydell and Debby Boone. He has sung behind Barbra Streisand (way behind!) and with “Jersey Boy” Frankie Valli as one of the Four Seasons in Frankie’s farewell tour. As leader of the Palm Beach Orchestra plays locally and just finished up ten years with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra as musical director of The Pied Pipers vocal group. In regional theatres around the country, Don has shared the stage with John Lithgow, Rosemary Harris, Roger Daltrey, Harry Groener, John Mahoney and Loretta “Hotlips” Swit. Favorite roles include the Emcee in Cabaret, La Cage aux Folles as Albin, and Mr. Showman-ship, Liberace in Judy’s Scary Little Christmas. Los Angeles premieres include Eating Raoul, original works at the Taper and Tiffany Theatres, and multiple productions of Hello Mudduh, Hello Faddah including Off-Broadway. TV Credits include Golden Girls, a three-year stint on General Hospital, and a four-season association with Picket Fences. Don recently completed filming “The First Tycoon”, coming soon to a film festival near you and remains the only actor in Los Angeles authorized by Lucie Arnaz to portray Ricky Ricardo at Universal Studios Hollywood since 1996. His debut CD Nice ‘N Easy released in 2011, is now in its second printing. Don keeps busy earthquake-proofing his Sherman Oaks home of sixteen years.

Matt Phairas
Matt Phairas

Born and raised the son of a preacher man in rural Indiana, Matt grew up singing in the church. At age 5 he sang his first solo, "This Little Light Of Mine", while rockin' a lightning bug costume and he's been singing ever since. In addition to singing lead vocals with Rex's band, Matt also sings lead vocals in Stone Soul and his voice has been featured on TV, Radio and Internet ads for Michelin, Heinz, Mastercard, Burger King, Kodak, Napster and more. Matt has also served as songwriter/singer for "Cheech and Chong's Animated Movie" and television's "NCIS".



Thanks to Fred Gruchalla, Peter Helm, and all of our wonderful friends for the photos of the band. Copyright © Rex Merriweather MMXIII.