Department Head, Bass
Jeff Bailey has performed in a wide variety of musical settings as a musician, composer, and producer. He has performed with world-renowned jazz artists Captain McDuff, Craig Taborn, James Carter, Nachito Herrera, Eric Garvat, Rodney Jones, Dave King, Brian Lynch, Wessel Anderson, Peruvian guitar master Andrés Prado, and James Moody. Never one to be pigeonholed into one style, Jeff has also toured and performed with Keri Noble, Joey McIntyre (NKOTB), Tommy Barbarella (Prince), Charles Lazarus (Minnesota Orchestra), Reverend Billy Steele, Jennifer Kimball, Heather Headley, and Charley Drayton. Jeff has also logged time on the road touring and giving clinics in the U.S., Germany, France, Italy, South America, and Japan. Jeff has served as musical director for Keith Antar Mason and the Hittite Empire and the Black Fathers and Sons project at the B.A.M. Next Wave Festival in New York, with photographer Albert Chong and writer Quincy Troupe. Jeff has also received accolades for producing a Minnesota Music Award-winning CD for Alicia Wiley, receiving a Best of the Twin Cities Award as a founding member of Moveable Feast, and a Minnesota Music Award nomination for best Bass Player of the Year.
Fred Bretschger joined The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra in 1980. Originally from New York, he began playing the bass at age 16 and attended the North Carolina School of the Arts and Cleveland Institute of Music. He completed his studies at The Juilliard School. In 1976, he joined the Buffalo Philharmonic, and became principal bassist of the Indianapolis Symphony in 1978. During the 1990–91 season he took a sabbatical from the SPCO to serve as principal bassist with the Houston Symphony under Christoph Eschenbach.
As a chamber musician, Bretschger has appeared as a guest artist with the Chicago Chamber Players, the Los Angeles Piano Quartet, Strings in the Mountains, Bach Dancing and Dynamite, and Bravo! music festival in Vail, Colorado. He has also performed at the Tanglewood, Aspen, Grand Teton, and Santa Fe Opera Festivals. Since 1993, he has been on the performing faculty at the Sarasota Music Festival as well as the Summer String Academy at Indiana University in 1998 and 1999.
Bretschger is also a conductor and arranger, as well as a lover of jazz, blues, and ancient ethnic music. He has conducted many 20th-century works at the Grand Teton Music Festival, the University of Minnesota, and the Spectrum Contemporary Ensemble in Tampa. In 2000, he led a full scale production of Stravinsky's Soldier's Tale at the Cactus Pear Festival in San Antonio
Gary’s diverse credits include working with local jazz artists Debbie Duncan, Bruce Henry, Dave Karr, Manfredo Fest, national jazz artists Richie Cole, Claudio Roditi, Herb Ellis, Mark Murphy, Clark Terry, and performing for dozens of Broadway touring companies such as West Side Story,Phantom of the Opera, A Chorus Line, and Victor, Victoria. He has also toured with Sammy Davis Jr. and performed with the Count Basie Band, and is currently bassist for The Guy's All-Star Shoe Band on Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie Home Companion" national radio show.
Performing over 200 shows a year, Travis can be seen in a multitude of musical settings, including musical theater, jazz, and pop country. Travis was one of the founding members of the Atlantis Quartet. Their first record, Again Too Soon, received strong reviews on both the local and national level. As an educator, Travis has been teaching bass for over twelve years and has written his own method book, Bassic Training. Since joining the McNally Smith faculty, Travis has helped develop several programs, including a slap bass course, and a master class series, which have included such artists as Bryan Beller and Gary Willis.
Jay Young is one of the Twin Cities' 'first call' bassists. He is a freelance performer and educator involved in a vast array of projects, working with national and international artists. He has performed at the Guthrie Theater, Ordway Center, Illusion, and Penumbra Theatre. Jay has also been a featured performer at the Lincoln Center, Juilliard School, Boston Symphony Hall, The Blue Note, Umbra (Italy), Espoo (Finland), and Tejo (Portugal). He has shared the stage with Ray Brown, James Moody, Dizzy Gillespie, T.S. Monk, Grover Washington Jr., Dave Brubeck, Ron Carter, Buster Williams, Bobby Lyle, Eddie Daniels, the Minnesota Orchestra, Omaha Symphony, Phil Upchurch, Jennifer Holiday, Harry Connick Jr., Jay Leno, Paul Bollenbeck, Reverend Al Green, Bobby McFerrin, Jefferson Starship, Carole King, and Ray Charles, Kevin Mahogany, Joe Lovano, Ernie Watts, Tim Ries, Sony Holland,
Marvin "Smitty" Smith, and many others.