Valencia began violin studies with Frank Frederick Ficus in Los Angeles at the age of 10. She attended Manual Arts High School and upon graduation enrolled at Mills College in Oakland, CA. At Mills she studied with Nathan Ruben and earned the Bachelor’s Degree in Music. She enrolled at the University of Southern California pursuing a degree in Library Science with an emphasis in music and was awarded the Master’s Degree in Music Literature from California State University, Long Beach. Valencia worked as a librarian for the County of Los Angeles and Cerritos College. Continue reading
Life Member. Piano
3/28/1937 – 7/3/2023
Lincoln Mayorga, the consummate musician as well as founder of Townhall Records and co-founder of Sheffield Lab and the Mastering Lab, has died. The concert pianist, arranger, composer, conductor, producer, and audiophile innovator was equally comfortable performing classical music on international stages and arranging and playing with popular artists in diverse venues — pop, jazz, classical, and rock ‘n’ roll. Continue reading
Former Member. Trumpet
8/5/1954 – 6/27/2023
A highly respected Los Angeles trumpeter, composer, and arranger, Howie was a Van Laar Trumpets artist and endorsed Bob Reeves mouthpieces. He received a Bachelor of Music Education from Fredonia State University in 1975, a Master of Music with a major in Jazz Studies from the Eastman School of Music in 1977, and a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Southern California in 2002. He studied trumpet with James F. Burke, Raymond Crisara, and Carmine Caruso. Continue reading
6/5/1974 – 3/5/2023
Caroline Erika Buckman, a talented violist and cherished friend to many, passed away on March 5 in Los Angeles after a valiant six-year battle with breast cancer. She was 48 years old. Continue reading
Life Member. Guitar
6/20/1938 – 1/9/2023
Honoring Dennis Budimir
by his daughter, Juliann Budimir
It is hard to give voice to the loss,
To give words to the ache that forever echoes in my heart since
My beloved Pop, Dennis Budimir, passed away in our arms,
My Mom and I at his side.
Dennis Budimir, beloved husband, father, and legendary jazz and studio guitarist, passed away on January 9, 2023. He was an incredible father to me and a loving, devoted husband to my mom. We are blessed by his eternal love. It is incredibly difficult to write about his passing and to put into words our monumental loss. Dennis Budimir’s musical biography is truly extensive; we are grateful to those who have documented his outstanding career and have given insight into his tremendous artistry. Continue reading
Former Life Member. Composer
10/10/1941 – 10/22/2022
by Dr. Bruce Eskovitz
How do we honor a man like Dr. Thom David Mason, an artist, a mentor, an educator a husband and a friend? We cherish his legacy as seen by my colleagues on this stage and the many hundreds of musicians that his teaching influenced for more than 50 years. The classes that he created, like “Jazz, Ragtime & Blues,” which brought this music closer to generations of USC general education students, who learned to love this music through the passion and intelligence that Dr. Thom professed to all. He created the DMA in Jazz Studies, which opened the door to that advanced degree for myself and many of the artists that share this stage today. His book “The Art of Hearing” revolutionized solfeggio in a manner that made it a viable and usable tool for jazz musicians and jazz music students. Dr. Thom was a brilliant man who always sought to inform, educate and create opportunity where none had existed before. Continue reading
Life Member. Drum Set
2/8/1953 – 10/31/2021
by Peter Andrews
Roger Larocque, drummer, percussionist, composer, arranger, engineer and producer extraordinaire, passed away on October 31, 2021 of complications resulting from a long battle with diabetes. Continue reading
Life Member. Trumpet
7/11/1947 – 11/27/2021
David P. Searfoss, 74, of Santa Monica, CA, passed away peacefully at St. John’s Hospital on Saturday, November 27, 2021 with family by his side. The late Mr. Searfoss was a longtime Santa Monica resident and a member of the American Federation of Musicians Local 47. Continue reading
Life Member. Composer
3/14/1943 – 10/20/2021
by the Messina family
Frank Jerome Messina passed away in McMinnville, Oregon on October 20, 2021, of heart disease. He was 78.
Frank had a lifelong passion for music, especially the trumpet. He started as a studio musician for MGM in the ’60s. In college, he went on to tour with both the Beach Boys and Paul Revere and the Raiders, playing trumpet, flugelhorn and providing backup vocals. Continue reading
Former Life Member. Violin
12/8/1924 – 10/21/2021
Local 47 Life Member, Russian born and internationally renowned violinist, Daniel Shindarov, passed away on October 21, 2021, in Hollywood at the age of 97.
Former concertmaster in the USSR of Moscow’s Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Orchestras, Daniel began his musical training with Pyotr Stolyarsky, who had also been the teacher of Misha Elman, Nathan Milstein and David Oistrakh, with whom Daniel later studied at the Moscow Conservatory.
After emigrating to the US in 1975, Daniel Shindarov served as concertmaster of the San Francisco Opera Orchestra, as well as long-time member of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Master Symphony, the Seattle Symphony as well as numerous other ensembles. As a prominent studio musician in Los Angeles, Daniel also performed in many Film Scores and recording sessions.
A public memorial service will be held at 12 noon on November 7, 2021 at Mount Sinai Memorial Park, 5950 Forest Lawn Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90068 (Forest Lawn Drive Exit on the 134 Freeway).