Laura with the brilliant singer/guitarist, John Pizzarelli



With the fabulous singer/songwriter, Ann Hampton Callaway



Photo from Django, sold out concert




Laura is an Artist Music Guild Heritage Award winner, a three-time nominee for Best Female Vocalist, and a finalist for both Best Mainstream Artist and Best Video (“Necessary Evil.”) She performed "Last Train to Mercerville" live at the awards ceremony in Charlotte for a nationally-syndicated TV special featuring Billy Gilman, Gloria Gaynor, Shirley Caesar, Chubby Checker and other stars. Another unusual tribute: Grammy Award-winning producer Ricky Kej has created a hot contemporary club/dance mix of her big band tune “Necessary Evil” that will be released soon.

Laura has performed in a variety of venues, including jazz clubs, historic theaters, elegant showrooms, major corporate and convention shows, and she even headlined two state galas at the Arkansas Governor's Mansion. Her albums have received worldwide airplay and she has appeared on a number of TV and radio programs and podcasts and starred in her own special on Dallas Comcast Cable.

As her “day job,” Laura and husband Pat Reeder write comedy material for radio DJs, syndicated radio series and websites. Her topical parody songs such as "Santa Baby (Help Me Through Recession Tonight)" have been heard around the world and were a regular feature of Mike Huckabee's national radio show on Cumulus Media.

Laura and Pat live with a houseful of parrots, which she writes about in a column for the newsletter of the Wings of Love parrot rescue. They currently live in a Midcentury Modern house that was once Laura's childhood home, where her late dad used to rehearse, filling the neighborhood with soul-stirring sax jazz, and write intricate big band arrangements at the kitchen table. They purchased the home and are restoring it to its original Fabulous Fifties glory.


BRIAN PIPER
Keyboards/Musical Director


Brian Piper focused on accounting, law and football in college, but luckily for music fans, he quickly changed direction and has been a vital part of Dallas’ music scene for...well, a long time. His resume requires a lot of slashes, as in "Composer / Arranger / Conductor / Performer / Recording Artist.” One recent title, from the Sammons Center for the Arts, is "Dallas Jazz Musician of the Year."

Brian is an astoundingly versatile musician. His modern jazz group, the Brian Piper Trio, was chosen as one of the spotlight new artists for the 2008 Newport Jazz Fest Beach Party. They have released two fantastic CDs, Piperville and TerrrRIFFic on 90th Floor Records.

A frequent presence in the Dallas Summer Musicals orchestra pit, he has accompanied the national touring companies of such hit Broadway shows as Wicked and The Producers.

He has backed legendary stars ranging from Cab Calloway to Mabel Mercer to country legend Jerry Jeff Walker (you can hear him on a number of JJW albums as a member of the Gonzo Compadres Band) and can often be seen tickling the ivories Bourbon Street-style with the ‘Nawlins Gumbo Kings. As owner of Brian Piper Music, he’s created numerous radio IDs and spots for such clients as NBC Sports.

In addition to being one of the most awe-inspiring pianists in the Southwest, Brian is also a proud father of two daughters, Hayley and Caroline, an avid pilot and a self-described “ski bum.”


INSPIRATION...

Laura with her inspiration and the man who formed her musical tastes, her late father, Bill Ainsworth. A prodigy sax man, clarinetist, singer and arranger, he was playing in Tommy Dorsey's band at age 17 and worked with many of the greatest big band leaders. He was also the clarinetist and backup singer for the Ernie Felice Quartet, pioneers of "cocktail jazz." Laura grew up watching him lead radio jingle sessions and play in showrooms behind such heroes of hers as Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett and Mel Torme. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.