The Pete Ellman Big Band Plays It Forward

November 22, 2022
Donate Today Buy This Video

The Pete Ellman Big Band (PEBB) was formed in 2009 after Pete retired from the Illinois Air National Guard after 20 years of service. Now considered to be one of the best big bands in the country Pete has performed with nationally known artists such as Wayne Newton, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Aretha Franklin, Bob Newhart. Members of Pete’s eighteen-piece band have played with Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Tom Jones, Harry Connick Jr., Quincy Jones, Count Basie, Wynton Marsalis, Maynard Ferguson, Woody Herman, and many more.

Since then, the band has played regularly in the Chicagoland Western suburbs at locations such as Mullens in Lisle and Fitzgerald’s in Oak Park. They regularly invite student jazz ensembles to join them and will provide guest clinicians. This is a way to get these budding musicians into a real-world environment playing the music they love in addition to an auditorium in front of parents or classmates.

The Pete Ellman Big Band Community Partners

Additionally, the PEBB has hosted numerous fundraisers at their events to help raise money (and food/toys) for local non-profits such as Loaves & Fishes, Toys for Tots, KidsMatter, Kidz Kabaret, Youth Symphony of DuPage, Naperville Educational Foundation (NEF), Gil Ellman Memorial Fund, and more! To Pete, it is all about giving back to the community to help kids, in general, and also to give kids an opportunity to participate in the arts.

Spotlight Guests

Pete Ellman, Founder/President

Bryan Miller, Staff, Client, Volunteer

More from Spotlight

Watch more interviews with local nonprofit organizations serving the Naperville area.