Pete Petersen Septet

Pete Petersen SeptetImagine this: it’s 1930′s Kansas City. You’ve got a front row seat at the hippest joint in town. Young Bill Basie’s on the keys, Jo Jones is hittin’ the drums, Lester Young and Coleman Hawkins are tradin’ fours over a burnin’ rendition of Cherokee changes. The joint is jumpin’ so hard even the squares are poppin their fingers. Suddenly, in walks Ben Webster, followed closely behind by Buck Clayton. Through a mysterious series of Eddies in the space-time continuum, a portal opens up and Bird & Diz step through to join the fray. A second later Joe Henderson and Sonny Rollins fall through a similar portal, landing smack dab in the middle of a conversation between Spike Jones and Weird Al Yankovic . They all crowd the stage and everybody starts riffing on 1970′s TV show themes.

The Pete Petersen septet captures the spirit of the most classic era of jazz and swing music, blended with a sense of humor and a modern twist. The band’s members all realize the great truth that the originators of this art form were the Rock Stars of their time. Their music wasn’t meant to be a museum piece or a teaching tool – it was meant to engage the audience and connect with people. They didn’t do ‘Jazz by Numbers’ according to a book of instructions laid down by educators — they just played it, and it swung! This band captures that essence, and for over six years have remained true to the spirit of the music they perform. Catch them now at a venue near you!!!

Pete Petersen grew up listening to pianist Gene Harris playing in his hometown of Boise, Idaho. He later earned his bachelor’s degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music, while simultaneously getting "real-world" jazz experience sitting in with local notables such as Bruno Carr, Stefan Karlsson, Ron Miles and Eric Gunnison. He has been featured on NPR’s JazzSet program, and he is currently one of Portland’s in-demand saxophonists as a sideman, doing section work for name artists in many diverse styles ranging from Lynyrd Skynyrd to the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra. As an arranger he has done work for many regional notables, including Howard Crosby, the nephew of the legendary Bing Crosby. As a bandleader, his Septet has hit the national stage, playing jazz and swing festivals in Chicago, Denver, Seattle and beyond. He has also been a featured performer at major jazz festivals in the western U.S, including the Telluride Jazz Celebration in Telluride, CO, the Cathedral Park Jazz Festival in Portland, Oregon, and the Gene Harris Jazz Festival in Boise.

"Petersen’s an accomplished player. He has a big, throaty tone and a blowzy, swashbuckling style with the conversational touch of old-time sax players." — Paul de Barros, Seattle Times

"…swinging, down the center of the groove, well-paced, scintillating straight ahead jazz and bop from a Portland cat who writes and plays in the best of the tradition. …Every [tune] rings out with the joy of playing the real deal." — George Fendel, Jazz Society of Oregon writer/critic at large

"This group, their arrangements, and musical choices are a big band at its best." — Mary Burlingame-producer/host, HomeGrown Live KMHD 89.1 The Jazz Station

Porkpie plays spirited, with enthusiasm and like they’re having fun with it. Their album is a must have in my collection. – Tim "Java Man" Taylor KMHD 89.1 FM the Jazz Station

Now with Bria for the Portland Lindy Exchange!!!


BRIA SKONBERGBRIA SKONBERG: Joining Pete Petersen’s Septet will be Vancouver B.C.’s up and coming super talent on trumpet and vocals. At age 25, Bria Skonberg has been performing on stage for over 20 years. She has made appearances as a bandleader and guest artist all over North America, Europe, and Asia. Early in 2008 she was a guest on Riverwalk Jazz with the Jim Cullum Jazz Band, representing the “next generation of jazz”. She is often a featured performer with Canadian Icon Dal Richards and his Orchestra. She co-leads and manages three jazz bands based in the Pacific Northwest: The Big Bang Jazz Band aka The 51st Eight ( The Mighty Aphrodite Jazz Band ( and Bria’s Hot Five. She is also a member of The Hoppin’ Mad Orchestra, the Yukon based quintet New Orleans North, and is featured often with the Solomon Douglas Swingtet.

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