My name is Al Anderson and I am a retired music educator, professional trombonist and music historian.
A native of Austin, Minnesota (home of Spam), Al Anderson has been a resident of Watertown since 1977 and taught middle school band there for 30 years. An active professional trombonist, Anderson has performed with a variety of jazz groups, including the Dick Jurgens, Guy Lombardo, Jan Garber and Howard Schneider Orchestras, Avenue Sizzlers, Joe Scalissi’s Dry Martinis, the Mitch Henck Big Show Band, Red Hot Dixie Jazz Band, Swingin’ Jumpcats, and Bill Sargent Big Band. Retired from teaching, he spends time performing shows for seniors, playing trombone, and traveling.
"Al Anderson has a great thing going on! Al has been to Coventry a couple of times, and he’s now a “regular” with us. He has a way of making our residents feel that they are the most important people to him during his presentations. His musical talent with the trombone is wonderful, and even more so is his knowledge of the music that he brings to our residents! He has the unique ability to take our folks right back into the “golden age” of music and they thoroughly enjoy each performance. I highly recommend Al and his variety of big-band based performances!"
Resident Services Director, Coventry Village
"The residents always look forward to the programs that Al Anderson brings to Luther Haven. He incorporates a wonderful mix of music education, entertainment, and audience interaction with music that seniors genuinely enjoy. The informational portion of his shows is a fun challenge for the audience, as well as a route for pleasant reminiscing. The descriptive, varied programs keep the residents coming back for more and makes activity programming easier!"
Luther Haven, Milwaukee. WI
Recreational Coordinator for 12 years
“I booked Al Anderson in 2012 for his 5 part American Songwriter Series. My residents really enjoy the format of the program because it combines education with the performance with a little bit of name that tune too! Al is very prepared for each program and has CDs to give away. My residents & I look forward to hearing all his other programs as well!"
Director of Lifestyle Enrichment, The Arbors
Madison , WI
"The American Songwriter Series has been wonderful and I thoroughly enjoy his musicianship and his willingness to have other musicians interpret each monthly choice. Please have him back next year."
Kathie, resident, The Arbors,
"Looking for an informative, entertaining and casual program for your group? Al Anderson is your man. The Madison area is very fortunate to have such a talented musician living and performing in the area. His American Songwriter Series is expertly developed with recordings, information, and trombone solos. As musicians, we were please to have his quality of performance before our group at the Arbors. This series will be popular with any age group."
Sheldon and Virginia Frank, residents, The Arbors,
Watertown resident Al Anderson is proud to offer unique and exciting programs for senior citizens. The presentations, listed below, are 45-60 minute performance/lecture/interactive programs that contain popular American music that has played a vital role in developing our culture. Each show includes a “name that tune” segment, with prize CDs – and we all know how seniors enjoy games with prizes!
NEW FOR 2014!
Music From Broadway Series
Broadway Act 1: Beginnings
This program traces the roots of the American Musical, from its beginnings through Show Boat in 1927. Songwriters George M. Cohan, Irving Berlin, and Jerome Kern are featured and songs include “Yankee Doodle Boy,” “Alexander’s Ragtime Band, ” and “Ol’ Man River.”
Broadway Act 2: The Golden Age
The American Musical grows up, as songwriters produce an impressive quantity of memorable songs in the 30s and 40s. This show includes writers like the Gershwin brothers, Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart, Oscar Hammerstein, and Cole Porter. Songs include “Night And Day”, “My Funny Valentine,” and “Oh, What A Beautiful Mornin’.”
Broadway Act 3: 50s To The Present
With the addition of fresh sounds and ideas, Broadway continued its success from the 1950s to the current day, with shows like My Fair Lady, West Side Story, Hair, and Phantom Of The Opera. Songs in this show include “Lullaby Of Broadway” and “Hello Dolly.”
NEW FOR 2014!
Great American Songbook Recital: A Name-That-Tune Extravaganza.
This presentation was developed for audience members who said they would like to hear me to play more. It includes the great work of Irving Berlin, the Gershwins, Cole Porter, and many other great American songwriters, and lots of Name-That-Tune!
Big Band Era Program:
A trip through the historic Big Band Era that features several big bands, including Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, and Woody Herman with songs like “In The Mood,” “Sentimental Journey,” and “Woodchopper’s Ball.”
The Big Band Era Program Part 2 – The Singers:
A second trip through the Big Band Era that features singers like Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and the Mills Brothers. The biggest hits from Your Hit Parade 1939-1946 are highlighted in this show.
Sinatra: The Voice Of The American Songbook:
A celebration of the music of the best-known entertainer of the 20th century, this show features Sinatra’s interpretations of the great songs of the American songwriters, done his way.
Mardi Gras: Then & Now
Jazz, the American original art form, began with Dixieland music in New Orleans. This presentation is about the songs of a Mardi Gras celebration in The Big Easy, as heard in both the early days and today. With tunes like “Bill Bailey”, “Basin Street Blues” and “When The Saints Go Marching In”, this show is perfect for a Fat Tuesday celebration – or any time of the year!
Songs From World War II:
It has been said that music helped us win WWII. This show highlights songs with lyrics directly related to the war, such as “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” “The White Cliffs Of Dover,” and “I’ll Be Seeing You.”
Songs Of America:
A stirring look at the best patriotic songs in American history and the people who wrote them. Perfect for Memorial Day, 4th of July, or Vetereans Day, this program also recognizes those who served in the Armed Forces.
Sounds Of The Season:
Subtitled “Holiday Songs Like You’ve Never Heard Them”, this program is a fresh look at traditional Holiday season tunes. It includes sing-alongs and gift CDs – just right for your Holiday celebration.
American Songwriter Series
Part 1: The Genius Of Cole Porter
Part 2: The Gershwin Brothers
Part 3: Irving Berlin, Dean Of American Songwriters
Part 4: Duke Ellington – Music Is My Mistress
Part 5: Lesser Known Geniuses
Here is a collection of Pics, Videos, and Audio to give you a better sense of what i do.
About this Blog // I have had a life enriched with sharing the joy of music with people, both as a teacher and performer. It continues with my newest project, presenting the wonder of music to seniors. I am a fortunate man.
Another busy and exciting season for our band Red Hot Dixie begins on Memorial Day in Monona. All of our events are posted on this site – just click on “Gig Alert” under MEDIA. Check us out this summer – we’re a really fun band!
Our 5-piece band enjoyed performing at a fundraiser for the Watertown Family Center at Windwood Country Club on April 8, 2017. Pictured are Doug Terhune, alto sax, and Yours Truly, trombone. (Photo credit: Emily Walsh, Watertown Daily Times)
I enjoyed performing “The Big Band Era Part 2: The Singers” tester day at Heritage Homes Independent Living, Watertown.
On June 27, 2015 I had fun being Al The DJ at the sock hop for Bethesda Lutheran Communities.
On June 6, 2015 our Red Hot Dixie Jazz Band was pleased to provide lively music at a rest stop for over 2000 bicyclists – what a fun event!
The Al Anderson Jazz Band is happy to once again be performing at the Spring Fling Fundraiser for the Watertown Family Center. The event will take place on Saturday, April 11 at 5:30 PM at Windwood Of Watertown Golf Course. Tickets are still available – call 920-261-2450. As well as live jazz music, I will also be leading a Name-That-Tune contest. Won’t you join us?
On March 17, I premiered my newest show called “Kollege Of Musical Knowledge 101: Music Of The 40s” at Cedar Ridge in West Bend, WI. The program, a music trivia contest with live and recorded music, is inspired by Kay Kyser’s radio and television show of the 30s and 40s. Pictured here is the Old Professor studying the questions.