Faculty & Staff

Dr. John Reynolds

Dr. John Reynolds

Associate Director of Instrumental Music

john.reynolds@ocsarts.net

Dr. John Reynolds holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Southern California as well as degrees from San Diego State University and Point Loma Nazarene University. Dr. Reynolds is well versed in instrumental conducting as he is a student of Larry Livingston (USC Thornton School of Music) and Sharon Lavery (Downey Symphony). He has conducted numerous wind ensembles, orchestras, and pit orchestras for various musical productions over the last 15 years.

Dr. Reynolds performs frequently with his own groups, the John Reynolds Jazz Quintet and the Gaslamp Quarter Jazz Orchestra. He has performed with jazz legends including John Clayton, Jeff Hamilton, Gerald Clayton, Rickey Woodard, Graham Dechter, Jackie Ryan, Bob Mintzer, Peter Erskine, Bobby Shew, Frank Mantooth, Gilbert Castellanos, Marshall Hawkins, and many others. Other groups with which he has performed include the San Diego Symphony, Westwind Brass, Millennia Consort, and the San Diego Chamber Orchestra. In 2016, the SoCal Jazz Society recognized Dr. Reynolds as the “Jazz Educator of the Year.” In addition, San Diego State University awarded him “2016 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year.”

Since its inception in 2014, the Jazz Studies program at San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts (SDSCPA), which Dr. Reynolds created and directed, has received high acclaim, including two invitations as finalists to the prestigious Essentially Ellington Competition at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Students under Dr. Reynolds' tutelage have received admission to and scholarships from renowned institutions, including The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, USC Thornton School of Music, Eastman School of Music, Berklee College of Music, and many others. In 2019, the San Diego Unified School District Visual and Performing Arts Department presented Dr. Reynolds with the "Artistic Growth" award in recognition of his exceptional work at SDSCPA. Dr. Reynolds is a consultant for Jazz at Lincoln Center, performing as a guest artist, clinician, and adjudicator for regional Essentially Ellington festivals across the country.

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Nathan King

Nathan King

Instructor

Nathan King is a woodwind performer, jazz saxophonist and music educator in the Orange County and Los Angeles area.  He has studied with great musicians such as Gary Foster, Jeff Ellwood, Katisse Buckingham, Sal Lozano, Dan St. Marseille, Damon Zick and Chris Bartz.

Mr. King has played under names such as Frank Ticheli, Robert Reynolds, Mitch Fennel and John Carnahan and has shared the stage with Bob Mintzer, Bill Cunliffe, Bob Sheppard, Doc Severinsen, Nick Mancini, Wayne Bergeron, John Clayton, Gregg Field, Steve Houghton, Eric Marienthal, Walt Weiskopf, Joe LaBarbara and many others. He performs in a variety of groups including his own quartet and Bill Cunliffe's "Bachanalia". His quartet has performed at well-known jazz venues including the Blue Whale, Catalina Jazz Club and the Alvas Showroom.

He was featured with the Hyperion Saxophone Quartet along with the Cal State Fullerton Wind Symphony at the 2015 California All-State Music Education Conference in San Jose. Additionally, Mr. King was selected among hundreds of applicants throughout the nation to be a part of the 2015 Disneyland All-American College Band as lead alto saxophone. Most recently, he was honored with the award of top saxophonist at the 2016 Reno Jazz Festival.

Along with being an active performer, he has been a teacher of woodwinds, music theory and jazz improvisation for a number of years in the Southern California area both privately and through local schools including Orange County School of the Arts. Mr. King earned a Bachelor of Music in Saxophone Performance with an emphasis in Jazz and Commercial Music from Cal State Fullerton and is currently pursuing a Master of Music in Jazz Studies from Cal State Long Beach.

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Mark Massey

Mark Massey

Instructor

Jazz pianist-composer Mark Massey was born and raised in Lynwood, California, where he showed early talent on piano, trombone, and drums. During high school, he studied classical piano and played in various groups, jazz combos and big bands. Mr. Massey studied music composition under Dr. Philip Westin, and during summers took music classes at the Cerritos College Music Camp. He played in the Pico Rivera Stage Band, which won First Place at the Hollywood Bowl Battle of the Bands. He graduated from Cal State Long Beach (with bachelor's and master's degrees in Music), where he was recipient of the Carmen Dragon Fellowship for composition and was dubbed "A Young Giant" by the National Association Of Jazz Educators.

Mr. Massey has performed throughout the U.S., Europe, the former Soviet Union (in the 1980s), Russia (2001), the Far East and India. He has worked with Larry Carlton, David Benoit, Paul Horn, Poncho Sanchez, Hubert Laws, Louie Bellson, Phil Upchurch, L. Subramaniam, the Side Street Strutters, and the late Freddie Hubbard, Maynard Ferguson, Yehudi Menuhin, Stéphane Grappelli, and Tony Williams.

He was featured in The Four Pianos Concert series along with pianists Paul Smith, and the late Pete Jolly and Steve Allen. As well as his periodic concerts internationally, Mark performs regularly at major jazz venues throughout Southern California, both as a sideman, and as leader of The Mark Massey Trio, with Anders Swanson (bass) and Aldo Bentivegna (drums)

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Kevin Richardson

Kevin Richardson

Instructor

kevin.richardson@ocsarts.net

Kevin Richardson earned his bachelor’s in trumpet performance from California State University, Northridge. He has studied with many fine teachers and musicians, such as: Carmine Caruso, Jimmy Stamp, Bobby Shew, Claude Gordon, and Jon Faddis. As a performer, Mr. Richardson has played and toured with Buddy Rich, Louis Bellson, Michael Bolton, Tom Kubis Big Band, and the Brian Setzer Orchestra. His film and television credits include Stuart Little, Fantasia 2000, The Today Show, Conan OBrian, and Jay Leno. Currently, he freelances in the LA area and also tours with Tom Jones. Kevin has taught private lessons and section coaching since 1990.

Brandon Lincoln Snyder

Brandon Lincoln Snyder

Instructor

Composer, writer, and performer Brandon Lincoln Snyder is always questioning the boundaries of making music. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Music from Harvard University where he studied with Chaya Czernowin and Steven Kazuo Takasugi. He has been commissioned by the Nebula Ensemble, Face the Music, and the Harvard Group for New Music, among others. His music, as well as his writing and radio, have been featured by the Darmstadt Ferienkurse, Downbeat Magazine, and the Harvard Crimson. In addition to teaching in OCSA’s jazz and commercial music programs, he works for Monday Evening Concerts in Los Angeles. Outside of work, he loves to swim, play keyboards in church bands, and learn the German language. 

Chuck Wackerman

Chuck Wackerman

Instructor

Chuck Wackerman started his teaching career in 1957, after earning his undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Southern California in music and education. He served as director of instrumental music in the Seal Beach/Los Alamitos school district for 59 years. He has taught a variety of music classes at the elementary, middle, and high school level. He created the jazz education program for McGaugh Elementary in 1970 and built it into an award-winning program throughout the entire school district. Mr. Wackerman also directed the jazz bands and jazz combos for the Orange County School of the Arts for nine years, while OCSA was located on the Los Alamitos High School campus.

One of the highlights of Mr. Wackerman’s career came in 1993 when both the OCSA Jazz Combo and the Los Alamitos High School Jazz Band won the Perpetual Trophy Sweepstakes Award, the highest award given at the acclaimed Reno International Jazz Festival under his direction.

A dedicated fundraiser, as well, Mr. Wackerman formed his annual professional Jazz concert series called “Class Notes,” where he hired well known jazz artists to come work with his students and perform a concert to further fund his jazz program. Such artists as Maynard Ferguson, Louie Bellson, Cat Anderson, Ed Shawnessy, Tom Kubis, Gordon Goodwin, Bob Mintzer, and many more jazz greats were featured.

Mr. Wackerman has been awarded the Irene Schoepfle Lifetime Achievement Award for Outstanding Contributions to Music Education in Orange County, Jazz Educator of the Year from Fullerton Jazz Festival, and Jazz Educator of the Year from K-JAZZ and the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music at CSULB. He has also been inducted into the California Alliance for Jazz Hall of Fame. In 2012, he was awarded for Outstanding Contribution to Education by the Orange County Board of Education.

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Tyler Walton

Tyler Walton

Instructor; Director, Big Band

Teaches: Jazz Ensemble, Rhythm Section Masterclass

tyler.walton@ocsarts.net

Tyler Walton completed his bachelor’s degree in orchestral percussion performance at California State University, Fullerton. There, he was percussion section leader of the college's concert band, as well as co-principal percussion of the college's symphony orchestra. 

Mr. Walton’s professional credits in the symphonic genre include performances with the Rio Hondo Symphony, the Nouveau Chamber Ballet, the Long Beach Camerata Singers, the Pacific Brass Ensemble, and a tour of Portugal with the California State University, Fullerton’s concert band in 2011. He has given Percussion Methods seminars at California State University, Fullerton and also teaches private drum-set lessons at Premier School of Music in Orange, CA, where he has taught since the studio opened in 2004.

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Advisory Board

Bob Mintzer

Bob Mintzer

Chair

Jazz Studies Department

USC Thornton School of Music
 Frank Potenza

Frank Potenza

Chair

Department of Studio/Jazz Guitar

USC Thornton School of Music
Thomas Hynes

Thomas Hynes

Commercial Music and Jazz Education

Azusa Pacific University

Jeff Cogan

Jeff Cogan

Director of Guitar Studies and Music Technology

College of Performing Arts

Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music Chapman University
 Jeff Hellmer

Jeff Hellmer

University Distinguished Teaching Professor

Jazz Studies/Music Industry/Jazz Piano

University of Texas at Austin
Christopher Sampson

Christopher Sampson

Vice Dean

Division of Popular Music

USC Thornton School of Music