Past Members

Sometimes it’s hard to say goodbye … The Bruce James Orchestra would like to acknowledge its friends and former members for sharing their time and talents with our ensemble.

Michael Kim: Trumpet

Michael Kim is a Vancouver based trumpet player, saxophonist and band leader. While he is currently a second year student in Sciences at the University of British Columbia working towards a Doctorate in Neuro-Science/Medicine, Michael still finds time to pursue his passions in instrumental performance. Outside of the Bruce James Orchestra, Michael manages and performs with his own Jazz Orchestra (Vancouver Legacy Jazz Orchestra – Musical Director Fred Stride) populated with may of the Lower Mainland’s finest musicians, performs with UBC Jazz I, and freelances as a performer around town wherever good music is happening, and as his schedule permits. Michael thanks Bruce for the opportunity to perform with the BJO, and also his girlfriend Emily for all her support and love as he pursues both his education and his musical pursuits.

Amanda Angus: Saxophone

Amanda plays saxophone and is a vocalist. She performs with both Bruce James Orchestra, Vancouver Travelling Band and TopLine Vocal Collective. Amanda is a busy wife and mother to a beautiful little girl and lives in the Tri-Cities. When she isn’t chasing around after her daughter, Amanda works in the automotive retail administration industry, and enjoys spending time with her family, friends and travelling.

Lyn Murray: Trombone

Lyn has been playing trombone for many years as a hobbyist musician with various groups and organizations all over the lower mainland. He is an avid lover of big band and jazz music, and is proud to have been one of the founding members of the Bruce James Orchestra. Mr. Murray was – pardon the pun – instrumental to the formation of the BJO. His dedication to the ensemble over the past 15 years is appreciated more than words can convey.

Darrell Swanson: Piano

Entrepreneur, Pianist, and Writer, Darrell is a man of many talents. Currently living in Maple Ridge, Darrell owns Swanson Agencies which represents and distributes throughout Canada the finest name brand products in the consumer electronics arena. Musically, Darrell is involved with many different pursuits, his two current harmonic preoccupations are his own vocal trio Toute Sweet, and a sophisticated piano-vocal duo with the lovely and talented Katherine Grefner. Red Velvet Music.

Kevin Shan: Tenor Sax

Kevin is a Vancouver based arranger, composer, and tenor saxophonist. Kevin’s interest in jazz led him to study at Capilano College’s Jazz Studies program where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Jazz Performance. Kevin studied tenor saxophone with Stan Karp and Mike Allen, piano with Ross Taggart, composition with Brad Turner, jazz theory and arranging with Mike Reveley and Rob McKenzie. Kevin has performed with various musical groups at numerous venues in the city. He has been seen performing with the James Productions Orchestra at the Michael J. Fox Theatre, Theatre Under The Stars in Stanley Park, Royal City Musical at the Massey Theatre, Capilano Jazz Band, Douglas College Jazz Band, and Fat Jazz. Kevin’s arrangements, compositions, and saxophone solos are featured on numerous recordings that include jazz, funk, hip-hop, pop, big band, and musical theatre. Besides being an active freelancer within the Vancouver music scene, he also taught for many years at Lynn Valley Music in North Vancouver where he shares his love and passion with others. He has recently graduated from the North Texas State with his Masters in Music Education degree. Kevin can still be seen (and heard!) with the Bruce James Orchestra as he often subs on one of our saxophone chairs.

Bill Ogden: Trumpet

When Bruce was planning on putting a Big Band together, Bill was the first person he talked to. Bill and Bruce played together in other bands including the Douglas College Night Band, and F.A.T Jazz. Bruce found that Bill’s phrasing and stylings were so similar to his own, that he would be able to put together a top notch band with such a fine musician in his lead trumpet chair. Bill played lead trumpet with the BJO since the band’s beginning in 1999 until he passed away in 2006.

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