A native of Sheboygan, Jeff Schieble has built impressive chops on the trumpet, beginning when he was a student at Grant Elementary. He was introduced to the jazz scene by John Gates, who was the UW Green Bay (once UW Sheboygan) band director, and by Marty Braatz, a great jazz saxophone player from Sheboygan. Jeff played professionally in Las Vegas, with Paul Suchermann. He and Paul backed up Pete Barbutti, a “wonderful comedian/musician.”
He then returned to the Midwest, first to Red Wing, Minnesota, and then to Chicago, Illinois, where he learned how to repair instruments. Using his extensive knowledge of brass and woodwinds, he set up his own repair business in Sheboygan that allowed area musicians of all ages to keep playing the music they love. For example, the Sheboygan Area School district has depended on Jeff for decades of repairs.
Since he returned to Sheboygan, Jeff has also shared his musical talents with the Sheboygan community in innumerable ways, including giving private trumpet lessons, leading the Jazz Generations Big Band, making guest appearances at schools, posting jazz information on social media, and jamming with friends.
When asked about his worst moment performing jazz, Jeff shows his great sense of humor and says that there is not enough time to discuss all of them. One of his favorite moments was getting together with Paul Sucherman and Dave Sullivan for a jam session, and they were so fired up that they created two CDs.
He has also really enjoyed visiting local high schools such as Sheboygan Falls and Sheboygan South, and playing a few solos with the jazz bands. He enjoys the chance to prove that, even if you are not majoring in music or you aren’t a teacher, you can still make great jazz music.
When asked about his favorite jazz artist, Jeff states that he listens to “a lot of everybody” because every artist has a unique sound. His favorite jazz musician at the moment is Joe Lovano because Joe is the last artist he listened to. The most unusual jazz instrument he has ever heard is an accordion. He admires Art Van Damme, an exceptional artist who played jazz accordion around the world.
The tune which Jeff played most recently on his horn was “Just Squeeze Me (But Don’t Tease Me)” by Duke Ellington. Jeff is not playing in or leading a jazz band right now. Like all musicians, his life changed during COVID and he is being careful. He is giving fewer private lessons, about five or six students, and he says that’s enough. He’s still repairing horns, but not big horns like tubas. He is “winding down” and repairing a lot of flutes, clarinets, and trumpets.
Jeff Schieble is an amazing pillar of jazz in Sheboygan and he understands where jazz can go. When asked about the future of jazz in this area, he notes that Sheboygan does not have a jazz club. However, he recognizes that jazz music is an “abstract art” and does not make a ton of money. Jeff says that if he won the lottery, there would be a jazz club in Sheboygan. We can hope it happens sooner than that.