Bio - Bill Gemmer


Bill Gemmer is one of the most sought-after trombonists in the Midwest.  Bill began his study of the trombone in 1956 at the age of ten.  After high school, Bill continued his studies with Tony Chipburn of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and later at the University of Kentucky with Bruce Nelson of the Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra.  From 1966 to 1969, he worked in the 158th army band in Ft. Knox, and the 9th Infantry Division band in Vietnam.  After returning to civilian life, he attended the Berklee School of Music in Boston.  Beginning in 1971, Bill toured first with the Hugo Winterhalter Orchestra, then with the Glenn Miller Orchestra.  In 1975 he became a member of the South Germ Radio Orchestra in Stuttgart, Germany.  He later played in the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra under the inspiring leadership of Buddy Morrow. 


When Bill returned to the states in 1980, he became one of the charter members of the new Blue Wisp Big Band and adjunct Jazz Trombone instructor at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.  Bill has continued to teach privately, and spent ten summers as a faculty member of the Birch Creek Music Academy in Door County, Wisconsin.  Bill occasionally performs with the Columbus Jazz Orchestra and the Smithsonian Jazz Ensemble.  In addition to providing entertainment for many private functions in the Cincinnati area, Bill conducts the "Dee Felice Swing Band" at the Dee Felice Cafe.