Member Biographies

Gary Black - Section Member
Instrument - Trombone, Occasionally French Horn
Member Since - Circa 1982

Gary started playing the trombone in the 5th grade, he eventually took lessons when he was in his 40's, and he joined the San Jose Metro Band around 1982 (he's not sure of the exact year). He met his wife in the band (how many others can say that?), and he now has three grown kids; all of whom are musicians, none of whom he has been able to entice to join the band. He has tried his hand at the french horn, but he was not satisfied at the outcome. He may try it again in the future. By day Gary works as a transportation engineer (no, not the train-driving kind!). Gary also plays his horn in local pit orchestras from time to time, and he enjoys his other hobby of racing cars (really).

Vern Chatfield - Former Section Member
Instrument - French Horn

Vern started his musical experience in grammer school, as he puts it, "right after rocks were invented." He played a variety of instruments through his formative junior high and high school years - including the trumpet, mellophone, and baritone. After serving in the Army Band in Salzburg, Austria, he played in the S. F. State Concert Band until his move to Hawaii in 1959., where he played in the University of Hawaii Concert Band and the prestigious Honolulu Symphony. In addition to being a fne musician, Vern has worked in the restaraunt industry, but he is now fully retired and playing music in 7 different musical groups of various types and styless. "Amazingly," he says, "there are few conflicts."

Mark Bishop - Webmaster
Instruments - Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Member Since - 2005

Mark has been playing his horn since the 4th grade, with a small (year and a half) break in junior high. He realized at a young age that he wants to keep playing his horn for as long as he is able. After high school, he played under various conductors at West Valley College, including such noted musicians as Craig Northrup, Joe Davis, Steve Tyler and Gus Kambeitz. Mark has applied himself assiduously to his music and currently plays in two regular groups. He is also a highly-sought-after pit member for local theatrical productions.

Rebecca Bishop - Section Member
Instruments - Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Member Since - 2007

Growing up in the wilds of Alaska, Becky took up trumpet playing in 5th grade in self-defense - to ward off those roaming bands of wild puffins and marauding moose that would attack unprotected dog sleds on the way to school. She continued to play throughout high school and college, leading groups and even teaching others, thus swelling the world's ranks of trumpet players - always a desirable outcome. Unfortunately, she quickly realized that leading musical groups wasn't going to provide her access to that billion dollars she plans to embezzle someday, so she revamped her career aspirations and followed the quickest route to obtaining mega-amounts of ill-gotten gains: she became a lawyer. She currently splits her free time between musical pursuits, poking people with swords, and smuggling produce across state lines.

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