t h e k e l l e r k o c h e r q u a r t e t
The Keller/Kocher Quartet is a group of four of southeast Michigan's finest and most popular jazz musicians. This awesome foursome has played together for over 20 years. Their many hours spent together on stage is reflected in their presentation, their arrangements and telepathic, spontaneous improvisation. String bassist Paul Keller, vibraphonist Cary Kocher, drummer Pete Siers and pianist Phil Kelly are simpatico, each listening to the others and reacting in often subtle, always musical and creative ways. A typical KKQ concert usually includes a tip of the hat to the famous George Shearing Quintet, whose unique sound has influenced the KKQ. The KKQ also draws inspiration from Nat King Cole, Page Cavanuagh, Lionel Hampton, Benny Goodman, Wes Montgomery, Oscar Peterson, the Modern Jazz Quartet, Dave Frishberg, Bob Dorough and the Four Freshmen. Co-leaders Paul and Cary often sing fun, light-hearted tunes interjecting a bit of humor and mirth into each presentation. The Keller/Kocher Quartet has performed all over Michigan at special events, clubs and festivals including the Montreux/Detroit Jazz Festival, the Michigan Jazz Festival, the West Michigan Jazz Society and the Ann Arbor Summer Festival. The Keller/Kocher Quartet's CD, Pipe And Slippers, is available online at www.pkorecords.com!
Paul Keller was honored as the 2001 West Michigan Jazz Society's
Jazz Musician of the Year and by the 2002 Detroit Music Awards as Outstanding
Jazz Instrumentalist. Keller was awarded the 2009 Detroit Music Award
for Outstanding Jazz Recording for magnum opus CD The Michigan
Jazz Suite. Paul leads his own 15-piece jazz big band called
The Paul Keller Orchestra and
he leads his own sextet called The
Paul Keller Ensemble. In addition to being a world-class jazz
bassist, Paul is a prolific composer and arranger. His many compositions
and arrangements can be heard on his various CDs, all available at www.pkorecords.com.
Keller is well known for his associations with pianist Eddie Higgins,
cornetist Tom Saunders, trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, saxophonist Charlie
Gabriel, clarinetist Dave Bennett, guitarist Russell Malone and Grammy-winning
vocalist/pianist Diana Krall.
Vibraphonist Cary Kocher is a native of Grand Rapids, MI. He is a graduate of Northview High School and the University of Michigan. He and Keller have played together since their days together in the Grand Rapids Youth Symphony (1977-1980). Cary now leads the music program at Forsythe Middle School in Ann Arbor, MI. He is well respected as not only a caring and thorough music teacher but as one of the most versatile and creative jazz musicians in our region. Cary performs regularly on drums and vibraphone throughout the Midwest and can be heard every Thursday night at the Firefly Jazz Club in Ann Arbor, MI playing vibes with Pete Siers' Latin Jazz ensemble Los Gatos and every other Friday at Firefly Club's Dixieland Happy Hour with Paul Klinger's Easy Street Jazz Band. Cary also plays vibraphone with clarinetist Dave Bennett's Benny Goodman Tribute Band.
Pete Siers began his musical journey in his hometown of Saginaw, MI. He discovered the drums set in Jr. High School. After earning a music degree at Aquinas College (1983) in Grand Rapids, MI, Pete chose to make jazz music his vocation. Pete Siers is now everyone's favorite drummer, a member of the 15-piece Paul Keller Orchestra, the KKQ, the Bess Bonnier Trio and he is the leader of his own Latin Jazz ensemble called Los Gatos, which plays every Thursday night at the Firefly Club in Ann Arbor. Pete has traveled the world playing music with guitarist Russell Malone, trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, saxophonist Charlie Gabriel and clarinetist Dave Bennett. Pete Siers' has two jazz trio CDs, Those Who Choose To Swing, featuring pianist Johnny O'Neal, and Those Who Choose To Swing Volume II with Keller and pianist Larry Fuller. Both CDs are available at www.pkorecords.com.
Phil Kelly is the most in-demand piano player in the Metro-Detroit area. His fleet-fingered improvisations and mastery of the keyboard are astounding. Phil's pianistic genius is equaled only by his droll sense of humor which periodically surfaces in his music and is revealed through spontaneous snippets of Fredrik Chopin, The Brady Bunch or Captain America's Theme Song. Phil lists Hank Jones, Tommy Flannagan and Barry Harris as his major piano influences.