About the Greater Des Moines Community Jazz Center

Welcome to the 

Des Moines Community Jazz Center 

Visit this site frequently for updated information and jazz schedules in Des Moines.  Read more below to learn about the CJC! 


Jazz and Wine Pavilion - Friday, June 26

Lacona Trio  The Lacona Trio plays original compositions written by Ben Chappell, that range from straight ahead to avante-garde. Lacona also plays their renditions of jazz standards. Join them from 11:00 am- 12:00 pm. Add to my calendar

Belin Quartet   The Belin Quartet will be playing a selection of jazz favorites which highlight traditional jazz styles. Join them for classical music from 12:30 pm- 1:30 pm. Add to my calendar

The Heath Alan Band  Heath Alan is a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist that effortlessly crosses genres to produce a delightfully unique show that celebrates a wide variety of American roots music. Catch his performance from 2:00pm - 4:00pm. Add to my calendar

John Krantz Quintet   The John Krantz Quintet features some of the most experienced musicians in Des Moines and was formed to pay tribute to the many great jazz artists and the fiery compositions associated with the hard bop genre of jazz. Join them from 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm. Add to my calendar

Hot Mess Quintet   Dave Camwell and the Hot Mess Quintet will be performing high energy and soulful hardbop jazz, featuring some of Des Moines' finest jazz musicians from 6:30 pm -8:00 pm. Add to my calendar

Rob Lumbard and Chase Garret   Rob Lumbard, one of the top acoustic blues guitarists in the Midwest teams up with boogie-woogie piano playing phenomenon from Iowa City, Chase Garrett.  Join them from 8:30 pm - 10:00 pm. Add to my calendar

Jazz & Wine Pavilion - Saturday, June 27

Hannah Marks Trio  Join bassist Hannah Marks and her trio featuring Nick Leo on piano and Sam Mogerman on drums  from 11:00 am - 12:30 pm as they present a unique mix of well-known jazz standards and some lesser-known gems. Add to my calendar

Java Jews   You don’t need to be Jewish to enjoy the highly caffeinated klezmer music of the Java Jews — a mix of Yiddish and Hebrew melodies combined with dixieland, jazz, and a touch of Spike Jones. Klezmer music is upbeat, tender, hand-clapping, tear-jerking, and in the hands of the Java Jews it’s always fun. Join them from 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm. Add to my calendar

The Commons Collective The Commons Collective is a quintet that features original compositions by all members of the group, as well as its own creative interpretations of standard jazz and popular repertoire, and is comprised of current students and recent graduates of the University of Northern Iowa. Catch them from 3:00 pm -5:00 pm. Add to my calendar

John Kizilarmut Trio   Catch the John Kizilarmut Trio from 5:30 pm- 7:30pm for authentic jazz music. Add to my calendar

Susie Miget Quintet   The Susie Miget Quintet will play an interesting mixture of standard, straight ahead and modern jazz tunes from 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm.  The band features many interpretive vocals by Susie along with a true jazz quintet sound in both accompaniment and horn focused instrumentals. Add to my calendar

Jazz & Wine Pavilion - Sunday, June 28

NOLA Jazz Band  The NOLA Jazz Band members play with many well know groups in Central Iowa. All members have in common a love for the sound and “feel” of old traditional and current New Orleans based music – real, gutsy, heatfelt and raw. They enjoy playing off the energy of their audiences, and truly have fun playing together. Join them from 11:30 am -12:30 pm. Add to my calendar 

Shane Burgess Trio   Come enjoy the Shane Burgess Trio perform a variety of standards from 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm. Add to my calendar

The Jazz Page The group will be performing a variety of music which will include new treatments of Jazz Standards as well as several original compositions, from more traditional to contemporary sounds and grooves will be enjoyed by all.3:00 pm - 5:00 pm.  Add to my calendar


The CJC was formed by Willie Thomas, a nationally known trumpet player, in March of 1988. Its mission was to provide young musicians an opportunity to interact and share their gifted talents with area students. Since the departure of Mr. Thomas, the CJC has thrived under the leadership of Phyllis Leaverton.

The main objective of the CJC is to provide young musicians an opportunity to develop their talents and enjoy music in a non-competitive environment. The structured monthly jam sessions are beneficial in this way - to both student musicians and professional musicians alike.

Over the years, CJC has maintained a regular monthly jam session on the first Sunday of every month at Java Joe's Coffeehouse in downtown Des Moines (214 4th Street). The CJC Big Band also performs there on the third Sunday of every month.

- CJC Big Band -

The CJC sponsors an annual Junior High Jazz Festival and also the CJC Honor Bands which provide valuable experience for young musicians with an interest in Jazz.

Every October since 2001, the CJC sponsors the CJC Jazz Hall Of Fame and Special Recognition Awards (click "Hall of Fame above). This is an impressive evening that pays tribute to important long-time musicians, educators and promoters in the Des Moines area.

The CJC intends to be the source for JAZZ infomation in Des Moines. More and more young people in Des Moines are discovering this important American ART form and the CJC is here to help promote local JAZZ in Des Moines! Please feel free to contact us with questions or suggestions.

You can become a supporter of the Community Jazz Center!

Click to make a Tax Deductible donations to CJC.

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