MEET
The Band

SULLY

SULLY began his music career at the age of 9 at his first paying gig and securing his first recording contract at age 19 with Island Records. Since that time, music has been a central theme in his life.

In addition to being a working-musician, Sully is also a nationally syndicated radio/television talk-host, his shows broadcast weekdays via radio on Clearchannel Media Affiliates, CBS Radio Affiliates, BizTalk Radio Network and Armed Forces Radio network in 175 countries and all the ships at sea and simulcast on network television in over 65 million broadcast homes daily and is heard weekday afternoons on NEWSRADIO AM600 KOGO heard from San Diego to Santa Barbara.

James EAST

Bass/Vocals

JAMES is a multi-Grammy Award winning bassist that has recorded, performed with artists such as Eric Clapton, Elton John, Michael Jackson, Babyface, Quincy Jones, Sergio Mendez and Al Jarreau just to name a few. His first influences include a long list of talented musicians… Wes Montgomery, Quincy Jones, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Canonball Adderley, George Benson, Bob James, Harvey Mason, Lee Ritenour, Jimi Hendrix, Santana. His unique style makes him a cornerstone of the “Sully Band!” James is the brother of Grammy Award winners Nathan East and Marcel East.

TRIPP SPRAGUE

Sax/Flute/Harp

If ever man and instrument were meant for each other, TRIPP Sprague and the saxophone are that match. He is one of the top players on the San Diego music scene.

Tripp has recorded on numerous CDs with such highly regarded artists as Kim Carnes, Todd Rundgren, Willie and Lobo and Sean Watkins of NIckel Creek. Tripp also co-produced and performed with the group ‘Blurring the Edges’ on a CD by the same name, which won ‘Best Pop-Jazz’ album at the San Diego Music Awards. He runs his own recording studio in which he has produced CDs for numerous artists.

TRES HODGENS

Drummer

Tres Hodgens has been playing drums professionally for over 20 years with different bands across several genres. He started playing at age 5 and by age 13 was playing for various worship teams in Hawaii and Southern California. He can and has played styles as varied as Pop/Rock, Jazz, Afro Cuban, Latin Jazz, Reggae, Hip Hop, Blues & Funk. He is as equally at home playing straight ahead Jazz as he is playing Afro Cuban rhythms.

Tres’ impeccable timing and style has earned the attention from several notable artists such as Lester Abrams (writer for the Doobie Brothers), Billy Davis & Marilyn McCoo, Black Mambo (Afro Cuban & Latin Jazz). He plays with several bands and is currently working with The Sully Band (Blues, funk and Soul), Jazz artist Deborah Galan & Silk and continues to play local venues and corporate events.

MARK HATTERSLEY

Keys/Vocals

No one knew… at least until HATS asked if he could sing the tune mom & dad had been working up for their show. Belting out “It’s Almost Like Being in Love” at age three, he could not be stopped and was propelled into the world of music. Founder of Raging Bohemian Music and Advisor and past President of the San Diego Songwriter’s Guild, this L.A. escapee keyboardist/composer’s work can be heard in countless film and TV productions. Hats has performed and recorded with artists and personalities Tony Gwynn, David Van Such, Randi Driscol, Steven Ybarra, Patrick Moraz, Greg White Jr., Larry Groupé, Josquin des Pres and many, many more.

NACHO

Percussion/Vocals

Ignacio “NACHO” Sobers is a rumba quinto master and an Afro-Cuban Latin jazzpercussionist.

He is most famous for being one of the most sought after percussionists in Southern California.

He is an integral figure in the fusion of Afro-Cuban rhythms with R&B and soul.

STEVE DILLARD

Trumpet/Flugelhorn

DILZ first love has always been playing trumpet. He maintains a busy playing schedule and is enjoying a professional performance career spanning over 45 years. Here are the highlights of the artist, tours, and projects that Steve has had the pleasure to be affiliated with Doc Severinsen, Burt Bacharach, Kenny G, Dennis DeYoung (StyX).

Lynyrd Skynyrd and the San Diego Symphony and San Diego Opera just to name a few.

As an apprentice to Dominic Calicchio, Steve learned the fine art of brass craftsmanship with hands on experience. At Benge under Zig Kanstul, Steve had many jobs including slide maker, quality controller, tester, and shipper. In 1998 Steve launched HornTrader.Com. At that time Steve was the first and possibly the only trumpet retailer on the World Wide Web.

ARNIE VILCHES

Lead Guitar

Lead guitarist Arnie Vilches has had the honor of touring & recording with major artists such as: Mark Farner (Singer of Grand Funk Railroad), CCM Recording artist Two Or More, Viva Santana, and currently Bobby Kimball the Original Lead Singer of TOTO. He’s been halfway around the world doing shows with artists like Cheap Trick, Robin Trower, Blue Oyster Cult, Bachman Turner Overdrive, REO SpeedWagon, Edgar Winter, Carmen, Phil Keaggy & The Newsboys just to name a few. Arnie is not only a great guitar player but also a true showman.

DENNIS CRUZAN

Trumpet

CRUZER became a leading bebop jazz trumpeter in the 1940s. He performed and recorded with the Be Bop Boys in 1946 and 1947. Around this time, Navarro began working with pianist Tadd Dameron. Some of his most significant works, such as “Our Delight,” came from this collaboration.

On several occasions, he performed with bassist Charles Mingus. Dennis joined the bands of Lionel Hampton and Benny Goodman for brief periods as well.

With Bud Powell’s quintet, Cruzer could be heard on recordings such as “Bouncing with Bud.”

One of Dennis’ most memorable performances was with Charlie Parker at New York’s famed Birdland club in 1950.

APRIL LESLIE

Saxophone

April Leslie is a native San Diego musician who began her musical training at a young age playing the clarinet. Following her love of music, she went on to receive her Masters in Music from Azusa Pacific University. Upon graduating she had the opportunity to travel the world with the Tony and Emmy Award winning production team, Blast! It was on these tours that April learned to play and fell in love with the saxophones and flute. Since then she has become an in-demand woodwind specialist and recording artist playing a wide variety of genres including classical, jazz, pop, soul, big band, theater, etc.… When April is not performing, she has a private lesson studio where she loves to share the positivity and joy of music with young students!

TOMOKA NOMURA

Saxophone

Originally from Gifu, Japan, Tomoka Nomura-Jarvis started to play Piano at age 6, saxophone at age 17 and earned a Masters in Music from the State University of New York at Buffalo in saxophone performance. She has appeared on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” with Fat Joe, Remy Ma and Ty Dalla $ign, appeared in a recently released music video by renowned Armenian singer Arman Hovhannisyan, and has toured in Japan and the United states with legendary Japanese blues singer Kenichi Mikawa (美川憲一). She is a member of all female jazz group Jazz in Pink and all female sax quartet The Saxations.

Tomoka has performed for numerous music festivals including the Playboy Jazz Festival at the Hollywood Bowl (2019), Cancun Jazz Festival in Mexico (2019), Seabreeze Jazz Festival in Panama City FL (2019), the Catalina Jazz Trax festival (2017), and the Long Beach Jazz Festival (2017, 2019) to name a few.

As a performer with Armed Forces Entertainment (1999-2010), Tomoka performed in over 40 countries for soldiers, ambassadors and other diplomats at U.S. embassies and military bases. Among the countries visited were Kuwait, Kosovo, Ecuador, Germany, Mozambique, and many more.

In classical settings, Tomoka performed with the Buffalo (NY) Philharmonic Orchestra, Dortmund Symphony Orchestra (Germany), and Bemus Bay Pops Orchestra (New York).

Tomoka has performed extensively for the Young Audience Program and Lecture Series for students in Western New York. Her educational pursuits include performances and workshops in elementary schools in the Los Angeles Area for “Dream A World Education” led by Grammy Award winner Bunny Hull. She also has experience in musical theater, having been hired for pit orchestra and on-stage playing. Tomoka speaks fluent English and Japanese.

JEFF SNIDER

Lead Guitar

JEFF is an American guitarist, composer, singer, songwriter, and producer. He was voted the 10th “Greatest Guitarist” by Guitar World magazine and has sold over 15 million records. A three-time Grammy Award winner and fifteen-time nominee, He started his music career in 1978 at the age of 18 as a transcriptionist for Frank Zappa, and joined his band from 1980 to 1983. He embarked on a solo career in 1983 and has released eight solo albums to date.

He has recorded and toured with Toto, Alcatrazz, David Lee Roth, Whitesnake, as well as having recorded with artists such as Mary J. Blige, Spinal Tap, and Ozzy Osbourne.

Additionally, touring with live-only acts G3, Zappa Plays Zappa, the Experience Hendrix tour, as well as headlining international tours.
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