Background

Jazz at Amherst College has a storied past. Through the work of student-musicians such as Chuck Stevenson '50, trumpet, (father of Matt Stevenson, trumpet, '05), Fred Karlin '56, as well as Robin McBride '59 and David Lahm '63, underground jazz ensembles were formed with various students taking on leadership positions. The 16--managed by Robin McBride--was such a group, as was the Amherst Jazz Orchestra, lead by Jim Myers. Through the work of Don Abrams and the noted pianist, author, and Ellington Scholar Andy Jaffe, jazz studies have flourished at Amherst from the 1980s to the present.