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The Sioux City Rockestra Player Biographies


Alan Arnold -- Originally from Illinois, Alan earned a bachelors and masters degree from Eastern Illinois University and a doctorate degree from the University of Illinois. Alan has also earned a reputation as one of the finest trombone players in the area. In past years Alan taught music at Mount Senario College in Ladysmith Wisconsin and Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa. Alan currently teaches music in the Sioux City Community Schools. While not teaching, Alan can be found performing with many groups including the Sioux City Symphony, the Dixie Daddies, the Sioux City Jazz Orchestra, The Brass Section and the Sioux City Municipal Band. In addition, Alan is a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and the National Education Association. Alan has one son, Christopher, who is a senior trumpet major at the University of Northern Iowa. In his spare time, Alan enjoys reading, movies, television and golf. 


Dave Snakenberg -- Originally from Sigourney, Iowa, Dave has earned the reputation of a very fine trombone player and a highly respected band director and music instructor.  He has been teaching instrumental music for 31 years!  He has also directed numerous honor bands, adjudicated and many contests, and teaches privately in his home. "Snake" (as he is know by his friends) earned his bachelors degree in music education from Morningside College and his masters degree in music education from the University of South Dakota.  Snake is a member of the Nebraska Education Association, the National Rifle Assoc. and is an official with the Nebraska State Activities Assoc.  Snake has played with many groups past and present.  These groups include The Mike Day Orchestra, Sioux City Jazz Orchestra, Sioux City Symphony, Ultra-Bones, Spectacle, The Magnificent Board of Directors, and the Siouxland All-America Band.  While not teaching or playing, Snake enjoys fishing, hunting, camping, riding his Harley and spending time with his son Seth (16 yrs.) and his friend Jeri.  Snake recently became a member of "Who's Who among American Educators." 


DeeEtta Riley -- A Sioux City native, DeeEtta keeps very busy as she is an administrative assisstant at Smurfit/Stone Container and the Minister of Music at St. Mark Lutheran Church.  DeeEtta has been a member of the Sioux City Symphony for over 30 years!  In addition she performs regularly on piano and organ in a church ensemble called "Celebrate" that has been together for 20 years.  DeeEtta is a East High School graduate and attended both Morningside College and Murray State University. DeeEtta has three grown children and their spouses, Eric & Mo, Charlie & Molly, and Amanda & Jon and six grandchildren, Jade, Dylan, Hanna, Zakary, Ella and Nicole.  In her spare time DeeEtta enjoys doting on her grandchildren, family time, reading, swimming, yard work, and church activities.  She is also a "big fan" of winter vacations to warm places. 


Diane Gross -- Originally from Springfield, South Dakota, Diane is a long time, highly respected instrumental music teacher. Currently, Diane serves as the assistant band director at East High in Sioux City, and teaches 5th grade band at several Sioux City elementary schools.  Diane is a graduate of the University of South Dakota and is a member of the Iowa Bandmaster's Association.  She performs with many local groups past and present; The Sioux City Symphony, Sioux City Municipal Band, All America Band, The Sioux City Jazz Orchestra and the Clark Terry Superband.  In addition to the flute, Diane is a skilled saxophone and piano player.  While not teaching, Diane enjoys reading, nature photography, and jazz music.  Diane currently resides in Sioux city with her husband Lynn (also a Sioux City music teacher) and her cat Tucker. 


Eleanor May-Patterson -- Originally from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, "Mrs. P" as she is endearingly known by her students, teaches 4th-12th grade strings in the Sioux City Community Schools. In addition, Eleanor regularly performs on violin and viola with area ensembles including the Sioux City and South Dakota Symphonies and the Arioso Quartet. Eleanor earned her bachelors degree from Augustana College and her masters degree from the University of South Dakota. Eleanor is a member of several professional organizations including the American, and Iowa String Teachers Assoc., the Iowa Music Educators Assoc., and the Sioux City Education Assoc. Eleanor currently resides in Sioux City with her husband Dan (also a teacher) her son Seth, a sophmore at the University of Nebraska and her daughter Claire, a senior violist at East High School. In her spare time Eleanor enjoys quilting, gardening, cooking, embroidering, antiquing and movies.


Jeff Lickfelt -- Born in Gettysburg, SD and raised in Aberdeen and Centerville SD, Jeff has recently been relocated to Springfield, AR where he is an accountant with Tyson Foods. Jeff is a graduate of Centerville High School as well as the University of South Dakota. While Jeff was still in the Sioux City area he could be found playing many weekends with the local band Mr. Hand. Jeff is a member of the ASCAP ( The American Society of Composers, Authors & Publishers). In his spare time Jeff enjoys playing music, softball, golf, and basketball. He also enjoys spending time with his wife Andrea and his two children Kyra and Peyton. On a funnier note, Jeff is credited with one of the funniest Rockestra quotes to date. While rehearsing the Led Zepplin tribute that was performed on Nov. 5, 2005, director, John Luebke (who had undergone a recent surgery) commented that he was on morphine when he wrote the tribute, to which Jeff replied "That's okay, so were they." 


Jules Banks -- Jules was born and raised in Westfield, IA, which is where he currently resides with his wife Pam, his son Ben and his daughter Leah.  Jules is the high school band director in South Sioux City, NE. While not playing with the Rockestra, Jules can be seen performing with many area ensembles including the Sioux City Jazz Orchestra, Sioux City and LeMars Municipal Bands, and the All-America Band. Jules earned his bachelors degree from Morningside College and his masters degree from the University of South Dakota. Jules is a member of Nebraska Music Educators Assoc., Nebraska Bandmasters and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. In his spare time Jules enjoys cooking, reading, music, games, and adult beverages. Jules also possesses a remarkable ability to remember, and re-tell every joke he has ever heard!


Kevin Massey -- Originally from Sioux City, and a graduate of North High School.  Kevin will return to North High School this year as the new Band Director.  Kevin spent many years as the band director at Bishop Heelan Catholic High School in Sioux City, and prior to that was the Band Director at Marcus, Meridan, Cleghorn CSD.  Kevin earned his bachelors and masters degrees in music education from the University of South Dakota.  In addition to playing with the Rockestra, Kevin has performed with numerous local and regional ensembles.  Some of these include; The Sioux City Jazz Orchestra, Sioux City Municipal Band, Impressions Jazz Quintet, Guntren Jazz Quintet, Whiskey Creek Brass, LeMars Municipal Band, Tri State Brass, Jubilation, Mearl Lake Orchestra, The Living Christmas Tree Orchestra, and the Northwest Iowa Big Band. Kevin and his wife Christine (also a music teacher) currently reside in Seargent Bluff with their three children, Joshua, Jacob, and Juliana.


Pat Tomoson -- Originally from South Sioux City, NE, Pat recently moved to Riverland Estates from McCook Lake, SD.  Pat is currently employed with Gateway Computers in North Sioux City.  Pat is a graduate of South Sioux City High School and attended Wayne State College.  While not singing with the Rockestra you can hear Pat singing and playing guitar with the Magnificent Board of Directors.  In his spare time Pat enjoys spending time with his wife Janelle, his son Trevor and his daughter Erin.  He also enjoys bowhunting and fishing.  Pat has earned the reputation as one of the finest Rock and Roll singers in the area, and is credited with the best Led Zepplin performance that you will ever hear in Sioux City!


Sam Irish -- While not playing bass with the Rockestra, Sam plays with many other local and regional bands. He plays everything from jazz to folk music and a lot of styles in between.  He also drives a truck for a local retail store. Sam was born and raised in Sioux City where he still resides with his wife Stephanie and his children Sam Jr. and Maggie. Sam spent twenty years playing bass professionally. He worked for many years with a band called "Hot Rod Chevy Kevy" and backed artists like Gene Pitney, Freddie Canon, Del Shannon, The Shirelles, The Drifters and Chuck Berry. He also worked with a group called the "The Danny Tyler Band."  Sam's musical training began at the age of 7 on the organ in his parents home. He later learned that he could get a lot more gigs and make more money playing bass. Sam enjoys spending his free time exercising, reading and being outdoors.

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Sioux City Rockestra, P.O. Box 2611, Sioux City, IA 51106