Through dynamic performances and inspirational educational programs, the Gateways Brass Collective (GBC) inspires artists and audiences of all backgrounds. Each GBC member’s journey to the stage demonstrates perseverance, a love for the art form, and a genuine interest in paving the way for others to succeed in music. The GBC strives to support diverse communities, encourages everyone to be a part of the larger musical discourse, and welcomes opportunities to collaborate with artists from all backgrounds.
The Collective was founded in 2018 and includes Courtney Jones, DMA and Herbert Smith, trumpet; Eric Davis, DMA and Larry Williams, French horn; Isrea Butler, DMA, trombone; and Jerome Stover, DMA, tuba. In addition to participation in the Gateways Music Festival and maintaining active performance careers, each member of the Collective teaches at the collegiate level and regularly delivers educational clinics and masterclasses for students in elementary through high school, college/conservatory, and beyond. Their love for music is equally matched by their dedication, passion, and commitment to community and learning.
The GBC enjoys a close connection to the distinguished instrument manufacturer, Conn-Selmer. Working closely with Conn-Selmer’s education division, the GBC presents innovative workshops on topics like “How to Improve Your Practicing,” “Learning to Improvise,” “Audition Success,” and other topics specifically geared towards helping pre-professional musicians develop their talents.
To connect with as many fellow musicians and students as possible, the GBC regularly partners with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs); the HBCU Band Directors’ Symposium; the Midwest Clinic International Band, Orchestra and Music Conference; Florida Atlantic University Brass Day and Buffalo State University, to name a few. They are welcome participants at music festivals across the country, including their home at the Gateways Music Festival, the Fringe Festival, the “GITS Fest” (the Grammys in the School’s festival), and others.
Accomplished in multiple genres, GBC members have performed with orchestras and big bands, as soloists, on Broadway, on commercial recordings, with indie bands, and more. They have performed with the Count Basie Big Band and Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, New Jersey Symphony, Cab Calloway Orchestra, Duke Ellington Orchestra, Mingus Big Band/ Mingus Dynasty, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, David Byrne, Aretha Franklin, Sharon Jones, and the Dap-Kings, Johnny Mathis and Bernadette Peters, among many others. Their work has also been featured on Netflix, Lifetime Network, CW Network, and movie soundtracks. Members have been nominated for multiple GRAMMY Awards.
Each GBC member’s journey to the stage demonstrates perseverance, a love for the art form, and a genuine interest in paving the way for others to succeed in music.
The GBC strives to support diverse communities, encourages everyone to be a part of the larger musical discourse, and welcomes opportunities to collaborate with artists from all backgrounds.