Steelin’ Dan is the recipient of Sacramento Magazine’s Best of Sacramento Award: “Best Show Stealers.” Steelin’ Dan also won the 2011 Sacramento Area Music Award (“SAMMIE” Award) for “BEST COVER BAND” and 2015 and 2016 SAMMIE for “BEST TRIBUTE BAND”, demonstating once again the band’s tremendous popularity.
Kurt Shiflet – Guitar
After embracing the guitar at an early age, Kurt Shiflet attended Guitar Institute of Technology (GIT) in Hollywood, CA where he studied with such greats as Don Moch, Joe Diorio and Chick Corea Elektric Band guitarist Frank Gambale. After GIT, Kurt attended Sacramento State University where he earned his Bachelor of Music degree, and went on to earn his Master of Arts in Music degree in classical guitar performance. Although he loves both jazz and classical, he is a rocker at heart being heavily influenced by the blues and R&B of the 70’s. Kurt is a sought after performer in the northern California area, playing with several different groups with varying genres, as well as with Sacramento Music Circus. Kurt is a full-time music professor at Sacramento City College. His love for the Steely Dan catalogue goes way back, and he demonstrates his amazing skill by replicating the signature guitar work for which Steely Dan is so well known. Kurt plays custom guitars made by Joe Dragony. Kurt also teaches private lessons.
Charley Langer – Saxophone, Electronic Wind Instrument, Horn Transcriptions / Arrangements
Since the release in 2010 of his acclaimed debut album, Never the Same, the multi-talented saxophonist has earned a sizeable fan base. The title track received significant airplay on smooth jazz radio and the Weather Channel. Langer burst into 2017 with an exuberantly infectious, playfully grooving new full-length album, Happy Hour. The 10-track collection showcases the saxman’s powerhouse alto on five tracks penned by Nils, and five co-written by Langer and Nils. The album features the cream of the crop of L.A.’s contemporary jazz scene. The album’s first single, Set Me Free, reached #29 on Billboard’s Smooth Jazz Chart in July 2017. The second single, J Street Groove, became a Top 20 hit, reaching #15 on Billboard in February 2018.
Maurice Montgomery – Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Maurice Montgomery was awarded a music scholarship to the University of Nevada where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education. He then earned a scholarship to the Berklee College of Music where he studied with Herb Pomeroy and the world-renowned Carmine Caruso. Maurice is currently a member of the California Musical Theatre Orchestra performing in Broadway Shows at the Sacramento Community Center Theatre and Music Circus. He has shared the stage with many of the biggest names in show business including Burt Bacharach, Nancy Wilson, The Beach Boys, Cher, Natalie Cole, Liza Minelli, Pointer Sisters, Lou Rawls, John Denver, Frank Sinatra, and Manhattan Transfer. Maurice has also performed as a member of the orchestras for several Television Specials including The Tony Orlando Show, Dionne Warwick Show, Jerry Lewis Show and Sammy Davis Jr. Show. In addition to being a member of Steelin’ Dan, Maurice teaches private lessons at Sacramento Country Day School and Tim’s Band Instruments.
Bob Williams – Trombone
Veteran trombonist Bob Williams is a much sought-after musician in Northern California. He boasts an impressive resume, starting with extensive training in both jazz and classical music as a young student. As he continued to develop his skills, he built a reputation among a long list of bands and orchestras covering a wide range of musical styles. For ten years Bob led the internationally known Wooden Nickel Jass Band, which was a fixture on the Dixieland and Traditional Jazz circuit. In addition to being a member of Steelin’ Dan, Bob performs regularly with jazz groups Sister Swing and The Fulton Street Jazz Band. Bob is a past president of the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society, which produces the world-famous annual Sacramento Jazz Festival & Jubilee. Bob performs as a freelance player with several hi-caliber bands, and is always in-demand due to his skill and specialization in a number of genres.
Ray Merrill – Drums
Ray was born in Oakland and was strongly influenced by the funk and R&B that came out of that City in the 1960’s. In high school he began to play in local rock bands and began to seek out drum instructors and clinics. Ray developed a love for auxiliary percussion and studied with teachers like Brian Melvin (tabla), Richard Adelman (congas), and Michael Spiro (congas). Later he would go on to study drums with John Freixas, David Garibaldi, Joe Porcaro, Scott Morris, and Pete Magadini. Drummers that have most influenced Ray are David Garibaldi, Steve Gadd, Jeff and Joe Porcaro, Lenny White, Danny Gottlieb, Steve Ferrone, Dave Weckl, Vinnie Calaiuta, and Hal Blain. Ray has played all over the world with different artists and has recorded on many CD’s and movies as a studio drummer. Recent projects include Uncle Chump, Faldo’s Toy, The Bacchus Brothers, and Johnny Smith.
Dave Buehler – Keyboards
Dave Buehler has been part of the Sacramento and bay area music scene for over 30 years as a performing musician, recording engineer, and producer. He studied classical piano from an early age and started playing in various jazz and rock groups while still in high school. Dave ultimately went on to study in Los Angeles with Mike Garson, the highly respected pianist who has been David Bowie’s keyboardist for several decades. Dave has worked as a studio musician and/or producer on numerous advertising, corporate, and voice-over projects. He has also performed with several critically acclaimed local jazz and pop artists including Henry Robinett, Phil Silas, Crayon, Ana G, and Mat Marucci. The music of Steely Dan has been a huge influence for Dave over the years and is a perfect vehicle for him to express his jazz and pop sensibilities. Dave’s solo project: “The Dave Buehler Trio” has released it’s debut CD: “ACOUSTIC IMPRESSIONS”.
Sandford Wragg – Lead Vocals
Sandford Wragg was born in Evanston, Illinois, but has spent most of his life in northern California. After graduating from California State University Sacramento with a degree in English, he went on to study music at Berklee College of Music, Chapman College, and Longy Conservatory. Sandford has also studied under some of the most respected voice instructors on the west coast. He has toured Europe and Asia as a member of several choirs, including performances for the Pope at St. Marks Cathedral. He has also performed as lead vocalist with several California-based rock and R&B bands over the years, which included opening for names such as: Ronnie Montrose, Pat Travers, and Elvin Bishop, to name a few. Among Sandford’s main influences are artists Chris Whitley, Chris Cornell, and Radio Head. Sandford also writes music and is actively pursuing his own solo project. Sandford’s exceptional vocal abilities and versatility often finds him in demand involving genres as diverse as jazz, classical and opera. His vocal skills are a huge part of every Steelin’ Dan show, but he also brings to the stage his unique sense of humor AND his extraordinary showmanship and energy!
Ann Sabra Roach – Vocals, Percussion
Ann Roach has been singing on stage since the age of 3 and has been a professional singer for the last 24 years. She has two CD’s available on ITunes for purchase and is known as Ms. Versatility. She is the Co-founder of TunesWork.org, a non-profit that advocates, supports, funds and helps sustain music used as medicine in local facilities. Ann is a Certified Music Practitioner and is passionate about using her gift of song to help heal and soothe those in need. Ann has sung with such notable artists as Wycliffe Gordan and Houston Persons in the Jazz All Stars, Craig Chaquico from Jefferson Starship, Night Ranger, New thought artists such as Ester Nichols, Faith Rivera and Karen Drucker, Two-time Grammy-award winning flutist Mary Youngblood, Grammy nominated and Downbeat award winner Dave Bass, the Capitol Jazz Project, the Sacramento Jazz Orchestra, Ken Pepowski, Chuck Redd and Ehud Asherie at the 2018 Harris Center Benny Goodman 80th Anniversary tribute sponsored by NPR, just to name a few. Visit tuneswork.org to learn more about transforming lives through the power of music.
Emily Kollars – Vocals
The rich harmonies are a natural draw for Emily Kollars, a singer and songwriter with an exceptional ear and a love of jazz, rhythm, and soul. Emily is a classically trained pianist who moved into jazz studies at Sarah Lawrence College in New York. She studied with jazz artists Glenn Alexander and Donald Friedman while earning her Bachelor of Arts degree. Emily has been a vocalist from the time she was very young. Her influences are vast. She is moved by the music of Bjork, Nirvana, Erykah Badu, No Doubt, Jobim, Debussy, and Bela Bartok. She has also composed music to the poetry of Pablo Neruda, John Dryden, and E.E. Cummings. In addition to Steelin’ Dan, Emily is also busy with her own solo career. She performs her own original compositions in venues throughout the Sacramento region. 2013 will see the release of her first CD. Emily also teaches piano and voice.
Larry Tagg – Bass
Larry Tagg has been part of the northern California music scene since the early 1980’s. He was co-founder and co-leader of Bourgeois Tagg. Bourgeois Taggs released two albums and had two hit singles “Mutual Surrender” and “I Dont Mind at All.” Larry appeared on MTV, “The Tonight Show,” “American Bandstand,” and “Top of the Pops” and participated in European and American Tours with Robert Palmer, Heart, A-Ha, T’Pau, Belinda Carlisle. He was nominated for Bay Area Music (“BAMMIE”) Award for “Best Debut Artist,” “Best Record,” and Best Bassist.” Larry played bass and sang on five Todd Rundgren World Tours and a Hall and Oates World Tour.
Kirt Shearer – Sound
Kirt Shearer is one of the most accomplished and highly respected sound engineers in Northern California. He is a Grammy winning recording engineer who has worked with a wide variety of artists including Cake, TonyToniTone, and Tesla. He is also a full time Associate Professor of Music at Sacramento City College. Kirt is an essential part of the sound that Steelin’ Dan delivers to our audience and his technical expertise has saved us on multiple occasions!