BUG is: 

Peter Epstein, saxophones;
James Miley, piano;
Jeff Miley, guitar;
Roger Shew, bass;
Brian Hamada, drums; 


Saxophonist Peter Epstein is Director of Jazz Studies at UNR. He began his career in 1984 in Portland, Oregon where he apprenticed with resident musicians like Nancy King and Glen Moore. After four years of studying jazz and various world music genres at California Institute of the Arts he moved to New York City (1992 - 2002). Throughout his career he has appeared on over 30 recordings and has toured in more than 20 countries with such notable artists as Bobby Previte, Brad Shepik, Ralph Alessi, Michael Cain, Miroslav Tadic, Medeski, Martin, & Wood, Mike Stern, Steve Coleman, Jim Black, Ravi Coltrane, Uri Caine, Kadri Golpalnath, and many others. As a leader, Peter has released four albums for MA Recordings. His most recent solo album for MA, Old School, features Peter Erskine on drums and Scott Colley on Bass. Even more recent is Boats, the latest release from resident University of Nevada, Reno faculty ensemble, The Collective. Peter received a BFA in Jazz Performance from Cal Arts in 1992 and a Master of Music from UNR in 2004.

For a brief period each winter, longer during the summer, Peter can also be found subletting in Park Slope, playing at assorted Brooklyn venues, and teaching at the Center for Improvisational Music ( Current projects: UNR's The Collective; Lingua Franca (w/ guitarist Brad Shepik and percussionist Matt Kilmer); Ralph Alessi's Modular Theatre; Crunch (w/ guitarist David Tronzo and bassist J. Granelli); recordings for MA Recordings and Songlines.

Brian Hamada - closet cowbell enthusiast, drummer and jazz educator - has performed with many jazz greats, including Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Williams, Rosemary Clooney, Ernie Watts, Bob Mintzer, Jeff Lorber, Peter Epstein, Tim Ries, Matt Otto, Michael Davis, Bobby Shew, Lanny Morgan and the inestimable Don Ho. As a member of the legendary CSU Fresno Jazz Band 'A' he toured Japan, Korea and Europe, performed at the Northsea and Montreux International Jazz Festivals, and in 1983 he was the recipient of a DownBeat jazz soloist award. He has been an active clinician and adjudicator throughout California & Nevada for nearly 20 years, maintains a vibrant drum studio in central California, and currently holds down the drum chair for the Fresno Jazz Composers Orchestra.

James Miley, winner of the 2004 IAJE/Gil Evans Fellowship in Jazz Composition, joined the faculty of Virginia Tech as Director of Jazz Studies in the fall of 2005 following appointments at Cuesta College, Fresno State University, and Albion College. A versatile composer comfortable in both the jazz and classical idioms, he has written music for a variety of chamber and choral ensembles in addition to his work for jazz orchestra. He has appeared as a guest composer/director at numerous festivals and universities, including the University of Oregon, CSU Northridge, and the Monterey Jazz Festival. Miley has long been interested in the reinterpretation of modern jazz small group compositions for jazz orchestra, and recent collaborations with noted composers/performers Tim Ries, Ron Miles and Peter Epstein have provided a wealth of new material for the big band. His catalog of compositions and arrangements is available through Walrus Music, Heritage Press, and UNC Jazz Press. Dr. Miley holds degrees from Occidental College, the University of Arizona, and the University of Oregon. Oh, and he sometimes plays the piano.

Jeff Miley received his B.M. in classical guitar performance from California State University Northridge in 1988. While immersed in his music studies there, he became a member of the Sun Guitar Quartet, whose accomplishments included winning of the Andres Segovia Performance Award from the American Guitar Society, and travelling to Japan as a member of the first guitar ensemble ever invited to perform at the Tokyo International Chamber Music Festival in 1989. In addition to his classical studies, Jeff studied jazz arranging and jazz improvisation with Ladd McIntosh and performed in the CSUN jazz ensembles under the direction of McIntosh and Gary Pratt. Since graduating, Jeff has spent his time working on his original music projects and working as a sideman on numerous recording sessions, concerts, and club dates. Back in 1995, right as his first album was being released, he became the recipient of the Spotlight Award from Guitar Player Magazine. Since that time, Jeff has been intimately involved in the release of four original albums, with more on the way. He is currently on the faculty at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, CA, and his guitar playing continues to take him across the U.S. and to Europe to perform.

Bassist Roger Shew, a native of the Pacific Northwest, holds a Master’s degree in Jazz Studies/Bass Performance from Western Michigan University. He has studied under such acclaimed musicians as Rufus Reid, Tom Knific, Billy Hart, Darek Oles and Robert Hurst. In 2001, Roger placed 3rd at the prestigious International Society of Bassists International Jazz Bass Competition. Although he has only been in Los Angeles for 2 years, Roger has made quite a splash into the LA Jazz scene, performing across the southland with musicians Joe Bagg, Matt Otto, Bill Cunliffe, Josh Nelson, Stacy Rowles, Eric Dries, Les Hooper, Club Django, Evan Stone, Jeff Elwood, Bruce Babad, Joe Jewell and many others. Through travels across the country, he has also had the opportunity to perform with the NY Voices, Sunny Wilkinson, Billy Hart, Bob Brookmeyer, John Abercrombie, Bruce Foreman, Kenny Werner and Dominique Eade. In 2001, Roger placed third in the jazz division at the International Society of Bassists worldwide competition. As an educator, Roger splits his time between being a member of the music faculty at Fullerton College, where he teaches applied electric/acoustic bass, History of Jazz and Rock classes, and as the Head of the Jazz Department at Laguna Beach High School, where he runs the LB Jazz Orchestra and Combo program.