The One O’Clock Lab Band for 65 years has been the premier ensemble of the Jazz Studies Division at the University of North Texas College of Music in Denton. The band has performed and toured abroad in Australia, Canada, England, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Switzerland, Thailand, and The Netherlands. Since the 1970s, the band’s albums have received six Grammy nominations, including two for Lab 2009. Since 2008, the One O’Clock has been performing under the direction of Steve Wiest (born 1957), a two-time Grammy-nominated composer-arranger and Associate Professor of Music. The One O’Clock is the highest of nine peer lab bands at the college, each named for its hour of rehearsal and each a standard 19-piece big band instrumentation — five saxophones, five trombones, five trumpets, piano, guitar, bass, and drums. The One O’Clock evolved from an extracurricular stage band founded in 1927 into a curricular laboratory dance band in 1947 when North Texas launched the first jazz degree program in the world. For the next 20 years — until 1967 — North Texas was the only US university that offered a degree in jazz studies.
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