The students in the Raider Jazz Band develop improvisational skills and learn various styles of music such as swing, rock, blues, funk, and Latin jazz that they would not usually cover in depth in a wind ensemble. Students who are currently in a “parent” wind ensemble such as Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band, or Concert Band may audition for placement in the Jazz Band. Students not in a band class who play guitar, bass, piano, or drum set are considered on a case-by-case basis if there is a need for an instrument. These students are approved by audition only. Contact Mr. Nunez if you have any questions.
The Raider Jazz Band performs at Ryan concerts and events, DFW area jazz festivals, and various community events. In 2018, 2016, and 2015, the group performed in the Chet Baker Education Jazz Festival and earned a 1st Division "Superior" rating. In 2012, the Raider Jazz band won Best in Class Jazz Ensemble and Best Overall Jazz Ensemble in the Winter Park Music Festival. In 2005, the group won Most Outstanding Jazz Ensemble in the Music in the Parks Festival in Anaheim, CA. In 2004, the group was awarded 3rd place in class 4A for their performance at the TCU Jazz Festival in Fort Worth. The group was also selected to perform in the 2003 UNT Jazz Festival in Addison and they also won 1st Place Jazz Ensemble in the South Coast Music Festival that same year. They have performed in concerts with the famed UNT One O’clock Lab Band and Two O’clock Lab Band. The band also performs regularly in the Denton Arts and Jazz Festival and the Collin County Community College Jazz Festival in Plano. Recordings of the Raider Jazz Band’s live performances have also been aired on KNTU 88.1 FM, the radio station of the University of North Texas. Students in the Ryan Jazz Bands have also earned positions in the TMEA All-State and All-Region Jazz Ensembles.