Watertown JazzFest Music & Arts Festival

Performer / Artist Details

Performer / Artist Details

The Vantrease Jazz Band

A truly homegrown act, the Vantrease Jazz band, headed by brothers Earl and Ernest Vantrease, will hit the stage at 8PM. Earl, who play trumpet, and Ernest, on keyboards, were raised in Watertown.

Earl said, "We both started taking piano lessons when we were real small from a lady in Watertown, Elodie Woods, who taught at Watertown Elementary School. We both went to Wilson County High School in Lebanon and played in the band there, and then we went to TSU and played in the band there."

"My brother played with Buddy Rich and B.B. King, and toured and recorded for many years with Ray Charles. I played in a rhythm and blues band in Nashville, the Soul Searchers, back in the 1960s. I still play with an R&B band, the Total Eclipse Band. We've been playing for the Wilson County Fair for as long as it has been going on [at the agricultural center]."

The Vantrease Jazz band was formerly known as the Jazz Five Band and performed for at least 20 years at the Watertown Jazz Festival.

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