Chad McCullough, trumpet (Chicago)
Ben Dietschi, saxophones (Toronto)
Brian Seligman, guitar (Toronto/Nashville)
Andrew Oliver, piano (London, UK)
Jesse Dietschi, bass (Toronto)
Tyson Stubelek, drums (Portland, OR)
Formed by a chance meeting in 2009 at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Alberta, Canada, the musicians of Tunnel Six continue to reach audiences across North America with their unique approach to composition and improvisation:
Chad McCullough – trumpet
Heralded for his “solos of mercurial poetry and high craft.” (Chicago Tribune), Chad McCullough is one of the most in-demand trumpeters on the international jazz scene, and his expanse of albums and projects regularly receive wide critical-acclaim.
“He is a rare instrumentalist who makes each note sound as if it were imbued with a deeper meaning. Certainly a player with great chops, his approach is one that is measured and deliberate, often introspective, sometimes gorgeously melancholic, and one that employs a continuity of mood and atmosphere that the best recordings have.” –Dan McClenaghan
Chad has performed with several of his own groups across the globe, including the Festival of New Trumpet Music (New York), the GG Jazz Festival (Krasnodar, Russia), Earshot Jazz Festival (Seattle), Appeltuin Jazz Festival (Belgium), and the Chicago Jazz Festival. Many of his albums have been released internationally, and several have reached the top 100 for jazz airplay in the US. When not leading his own projects, McCullough performs regularly in groups led by Matt Ulery, Dan Bruce, Luke Malewicz, Dana Hall, Shawn Maxwell, Kane Mathis, and Atticus Lazenby. He has recently performed with Miguel Zenon, and Maria Schneider.
As a composer, McCullough has scored for film, written for various large ensembles, dancers, string and chamber groups- in both classical and jazz idioms. Many of his pieces have been featured music spots on NPR. He is currently a member of the Jazz Studies faculty at DePaul University, and the Merit Conservatory of Music in Chicago, and has given masterclasses at internationally recognized high school and college music programs around the world.
Chad holds a M.M. from the University of Washington, and a B.M. from the University of Idaho, where he was a Lionel Hampton Scholar, and the first student to graduate with a jazz emphasis on his degree. He has played and arranged for the Disneyland College Band, toured extensively playing both piano and trumpet in the Glenn Miller Orchestra, and in 2009 attended the jazz & creative music workshop at the Banff Centre in Canada. In 2015 he was part of a residency with MacArthur Grant recipient Steve Coleman. He was awarded a City of Chicago DCASE Grant in 2016 to study with Grammy-nominated trumpeter Tim Hagans.
Ben Dietschi – tenor and soprano sax
Toronto based saxophonist & composer Ben Dietschi has appeared at major festivals and venues across Canada, Europe, and the U.S. His most recent projects include the international modern jazz collective Tunnel Six, and the Spectrum Composers Collective. He also regularly performs as a sideman in many of Toronto’s top jazz and creative music ensembles. Ben has developed, produced, and directed a diverse set of projects ranging from concert music to creative crossover projects with world, folk and popular genres.
In 2016, Ben was appointed Executive Director of Soundstreams, firmly established as one of Canada and the world’s leading contemporary music companies, featuring bold thematic programs as part of its mainstage series, intimate and experimental Ear Candy series, Salon 21 outreach series in partnership with the Gardiner Museum and the Toronto Public Library, as well as SoundMakers and the Emerging Composer Workshop. Ben also founded and served as Artistic Director of indie new music collective Spectrum Music for nearly 10 years.
As a performer and composer Ben has been recognized and supported by several arts organisations in the public and private sector. During graduate studies at the University of Toronto he studied performance and composition with Canadian luminaries such as Tim Ries, Andrew Downing, Gary Kulesha & Terry Promane. As a performer, composer and director, Ben’s style reflects a broad spectrum of expression, and a continual desire to seek out new ways to affect people with creative music.
Andrew Oliver – piano
Andrew Oliver is a pianist from Portland, Oregon. After growing up playing classical piano, he became fascinated with ragtime and early jazz in his teens, eventually leading him to study music at Loyola University New Orleans, absorbing the musical culture of the Crescent City until Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Returning home after the storm, he hooked up with New Orleans expatriate saxophonist Devin Phillips, who had moved to Portland after Katrina. With Phillips’ quartet he toured 5 countries in West Africa in 2007 as a cultural ambassador with Jazz at Lincoln Center and the U.S. State Department’s Rhythm Road: American Music Abroad program.
From 2005-2013 he was an integral member of the Portland jazz scene, playing both traditional and modern jazz. The Andrew Oliver Sextet released 2 albums of original music to critical acclaim and his group the Kora Band, integrating jazz and the traditional west African kora, a 21-string harp, recorded three albums, winning multiple awards and commissions from Earshot Jazz in Seattle and Chamber Music America. He formed the Portland Jazz Composers’ Ensemble, a nonprofit large ensemble encouraging new music by local composers and a corresponding record label, and toured Canada and the U.S. seven times with the Canadian-American collective Tunnel Six. He also released “Sister Cities” with his chamber-jazz group the Ocular Concern, receiving four stars from Downbeat Magazine.
At the same time, Andrew co-founded and played piano, cornet, and drums in the Bridgetown Sextet, performing 1920s and 30s jazz and stomp with a high energy attitude which cemented the group’s popularity among both listeners and dancers in the Northwest and releasing three albums. He also delved into the world of Argentine tango music, with an extended collaboration with bandoneonist (and expert dancer) Alex Krebs, resulting in a long-standing monthly gig at Tango Berretin, Portland’s only all-Argentine Tango dance studio, an album of original tangos for dancing and an album of new tango/jazz/rock fusion, “What the Tango?!”
Since moving to London, England in 2013, Andrew has continued to pursue his love of early jazz within the impressive London and UK traditional jazz scene. A long-lasting duo residency with clarinetist David Horniblow subsequently gave birth to the Dime Notes, a band focused on new interpretations of 20s and 30s repertoire within the framework of the traditional style, and the Vitality Five, a raucous quintet playing 20s small group stomps and jazz with unparalleled energy and authenticity. Both bands have played extensively in London, the UK, and Europe, with the Dime Notes embarking on an ambitious 3 week tour of Scotland in June 2017, and the Vitality Five featured at festivals in Holland, Germany, and Hungary in 2017.
As a composer, Andrew has studied with John Hollenbeck, Dave Douglas, and Charley Gray, among others. He has received numerous awards and commissions including the ASCAP Young Jazz Composers’ Award, an Oregon Arts Commission Individual Artist Fellowship, the Chamber Music America New Jazz Works grant, and commissions from FILMUSIK, the Oregon Jazz Orchestra, the Portland Jazz Orchestra, and the Regional Arts and Culture Council.
Jesse Dietschi – bass
With performance credits ranging from orchestral soloist to jazz session player, Toronto bassist Jesse Dietschi is a truly versatile musician and composer equally experienced in jazz, classical, and popular music. He holds an Artist Diploma from the Glenn Gould School (RCM, Toronto) in Orchestral Performance, along with Masters degrees in both Jazz Performance (U of Toronto) and Composition (Brandon University). Jesse is a faculty member at the Southwestern Ontario Suzuki Institute, St. Andrew’s College, and the Oakville Suzuki Association. He has appeared on international broadcasts including the CBC’s Sounds of the Season and Murdoch Mysteries, and NBC’s hit show Hannibal. Jesse is a member of the international touring ensemble Tunnel Six, contemporary jazz outfit the Nick Maclean Quartet, and has performed with the Canadian Opera Company, Esprit Orchestra, Toronto Concert Orchestra, Sony Centre/Attila Glatz Productions, and Against the Grain Theatre.
As a composer and bandleader, Jesse leads the Catalyst Ensemble, a Toronto-based chamber jazz hybrid ensemble that uses strings and rhythm section to perform genre-bending compositions. He has also appeared as a soloist with chamber and full orchestras throughout Ontario, and has performed, toured, and recorded with a wide range of artists including The Headstones, Metric, the Gryphon Trio, Robi Botos, Ken Lavigne, Tapestry Opera, Irene Torres and the Sugar Devils, and Mexico’s Festival de Febrero. He has studied with Jeffrey Beecher, Andrew Downing, David Occhipinti, and Stan Label, and has worked in masterclasses with Joel Quarrington and Timothy Pitts.
Tyson Stubelek – drums
Portland native Tyson Stubelek began playing music at the age of 3 under the guidance of his father, also a drummer. During his youth, Tyson quickly became involved in the local music scene, playing in a number of symphonies and ensembles. Upon meeting and hearing Elvin Jones play live, Tyson, at age twelve, began to focus intently on being a jazz musician, studying with Portland drum gurus Alan Jones and Mel Brown, to whom he attributes much of his musical understanding.
Tyson moved to Boston, Massachusetts in 2005 after rounding out his undergraduate studies at Portland State University, completing a triple major (BM, BS, BS), and continued on with 4 years of graduate level pursuits (MM, GD) at the New England Conservatory, where he studied intently with many of the world’s finest musicians. In 2009 Tyson moved to New York City where he continued to work and live as a professional for 4 years.
Tyson has been teaching drum lessons for the past 15 years in schools and privately. He has toured internationally across Canada, the UK, throughout the United States, and has played and performed with numerous prominent musicians including: Danilo Perez, Esperanza Spaulding, Lee Konitz, Dave Holland, Ingrid Jensen, Jerry Bergonzi, Billy Hart, Bob Moses, Joe Locke, Dave Douglas, Clarence Penn, Tony Malaby, Ben Street, Adam Benjamin, Joshua Redman, George Colligan, and Darrell Grant.
In 2013, Tyson returned home to Portland where he performs and teaches regularly. He remains entirely dedicated to learning new things, bettering himself as a person and musician, and passing on positivity through music community.