Relevant Life and Career Events by Decade
1955 – (November 2nd) Christopher LeRoy Burnett born in Olathe, KS, the fifth of nine living children to Violet and Clifford Burnett. Also see: BurnettFamilyUS.com
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1955 to 1963 – Lived in France, Michigan, and Colorado as an Active Duty US Military Family prior to father concluding his career and returning the family to the Kansas City metropolitan area. Also see: BurnettFamilyUS.com
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1970 – St. James A.M.E. Church Junior Choir vocalist under the direction of Nevada Rosbia (Kansas)
1972 to 1974 – Clarinet and Saxophone study with James R. Fuchs (Kansas)
1973 to 1974 – Saxophone study with Charles “Charlie” Molina (Kansas)
1974 – Selected for the Madrigal Singers vocal ensemble and studied Music Theory at Paola High School under the direction of Michael Lindeman
1974 – Accepted to attend the University of Kansas as a Fine Art Major, however qualified to enlist in the military bands directly after graduating high school and signed on as a Professional Musical Performing Artist instead.
1974 – Passed auditions for US Air Force music program; and, for US Army Bands Career Program – chose Army.
1974 – PROFESSIONAL MUSIC CAREER BEGINS: Went from high school directly to the professional Army music field. Initial goal was to earn education benefits under the GI Bill to eventually go study at Berklee College of Music in Boston. But, found that education opportunities were available concurrent to active duty musical service and ultimately stayed in the Army for 22 years. (See timeline below.)
1974 – PROFESSIONAL MUSIC CAREER BEGINS: US Army Basic Training at Fort Leonard Wood offered a job opportunity with The White House Communications Agency (WHCA) due to high aptitude test scores, but remained on path with the military to work as a Professional Musical Performing Artist instead.
1974 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Armed Forces School of Music: Saxophone study with Eric Daniel, sat in with the Faculty Jazz Ensemble as a Basic Course Student, studied music theory, ear training, ensemble performance at Basic Course (Virginia)
1975 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Earned military occupational specialty of Saxophone Player
1975 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Saxophone Section Leader, Featured Soloist and Supply Sergeant at 1st Infantry Division Band (Kansas)
1976 – SELMER PARIS SAXOPHONES: Purchased first set of Selmer (Paris) Saxophones – Mark VII alto and tenor
1977 – AWARD: Awarded THE ARMY COMMENDATION MEDAL – SIGNED: CALVERT P. BENEDICT, Major General, U.S. Army, Commander, 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red One) and Fort Riley on 17 January 1977 ( Note: 1 of 4 Army Commendation Medals awarded during career)
1977 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Armed Forces School of Music: Saxophone study with Javier Gutierrez, music theory, ear training, ensemble performance at Intermediate Course (Virginia)
1977 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Earned additional military occupational specialty of Clarinet Player and qualified for the senior organizational position of Band Group Leader
1977 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Saxophone Section Leader, Featured Soloist, Supply Sergeant and Staff Arranger at 1st Armored Division Band (Germany)
1977 to 1980 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Berklee College of Music Arranging and Composition Course (Boston)
1979 – BURNETTFAMILYUS.ORG: (March 23rd) After two-year engagement and touring Europe together with the Army band, married the flautist, Terri Anderson Burnett at Copenhagen (Denmark)
1979 – JAZZ ARTISTRY: Featured Jazz Saxophone Soloist at age 22 in concerts with Hofer Symphoniker (Germany)
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1980 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Saxophone Section Leader, Featured Soloist, Administration Sergeant and Staff Arranger at First US Army Band (Maryland – Military District of Washington)
1981 to 1982 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Conducting Study with Dr. Robert B. Tennyson through American University (Washington DC)
1982 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Armed Forces School of Music: Studied conducting with Gregory A. Prudom, Dick Grove School of Music arranging course with Charles S. Clarke and Advanced Theory with Dr.(and concurrent Army Staff Sergeant) Vernon Boyd , company management, march composition, ear training, ensemble performance at Advanced Course (Virginia)
1983 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Armed Forces School of Music: Accepted into the Army Warrant Officer Bandmaster Program, but did not become a Warrant Officer Bandmaster
1983 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Armed Forces School of Music: Graduated from Advanced Course with 3.05 Audition Score as a Saxophone Artist and qualified for all Senior Positions within Army band organizations (Virginia)
1983 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Woodwind Group Leader, Featured Soloist and Staff Arranger at 399th US Army Band (Missouri)
1983 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Studied Woodwind Instruments with Bill Archer through Fontbonne University (St. Louis)
1983 – TEACHING HIGHLIGHT: Private Teaching Practice begins: Accepted Willie Meyers Thornton as very first private student (Missouri)
1983 to 1985 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Studied the Joseph Schillinger System of Musical Composition privately with O’tress L. Tandy (Missouri)
1984 – EDUCATION HIGHLIGHT: Business Administration and General Studies, Columbia College (Missouri)
1984 – AWARD: Awarded MACOM C1 Additional Skill Identifier
1985 to 1990 – JAZZ EDUCATION: Adjunct Faculty, Missouri Science and Technology (formerly, University of Missouri-Rolla) taught Music 036 Jazz Band
1985 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Offered 02S Jazz Saxophone position with US Military Academy Band’s Jazz Knights: was deemed mission essential and not released for reassignment.
1989 – BURNETTFAMILYUS.ORG: (March 23rd) Celebrated 10th Anniversary of marriage to the flautist, Terri Anderson Burnett at Copenhagen (Denmark)
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1990 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Woodwind Group Leader, Ceremonial Band Leader, Jazz Ensemble Director, Featured Soloist and Staff Arranger at NATO Band (Italy)
1992 – AWARD: Awarded THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE MERITORIOUS SERVICE MEDAL – SIGNED: J. S. LAPOSATA, Lieutenant General, U.S. Army, Chief of Staff on 01 September 1992
1992 – CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Staff and Faculty, Faculty Wind Ensemble, Faculty Lab Band, Featured Soloist and Student Company First Sergeant at Armed Forces School of Music in Norfolk, VA
1992 – CERTIFICATION: MACOM C1 Additional Skill Identifier recertification audition with 3.20 Audition Score on Alto Saxophone at Armed Forces School of Music in Norfolk, VA
1993 – AWARD: Awarded THE MERITORIOUS SERVICE MEDAL – SIGNED: RONALD E. BROOKS, Major General, U.S. Army, Commanding on 21 April 1993 ( Note: 1 of 2 Army Meritorious Service Medals awarded during career)
1993 – JAZZ ARTISTRY: First Sergeant, Featured Soloist and Enlisted Band Leader at 399th US Army Band (Missouri)
1994 – SELMER PARIS SAXOPHONES: Purchased Selmer (Paris) Saxophone – Series II alto
1995 – National Federation of Music Clubs Five Star Award of Merit winner for Original Composition and Arrangement for Large Jazz Ensemble: Daedalus
1995 – ENTREPRENEURIALISM: Co-founded Burnett Music Company with Terri Anderson Burnett (Missouri)
1996 – CAREER SERVICE: Honorable Retirement from Active Duty Military Service (after 22 Continuous Years Regular Army – Army Career & Alumni Program)
1996 – JAZZ EDUCATION: Saxophone Lessons with Paul DeMarinis at Webster University (St. Louis)
1996 – JAZZ EDUCATION: Saxophone Study with Jerry Greene (Patterns For Jazz)
1996 – AWARD: Letter of Appreciation, Subject: MISSOURI QUALITY AWARD – SIGNED: JOHN T. PARK, Chancellor, University of Missouri-Rolla on 29 January 1996
1996 to 2000 – JAZZ EDUCATION: Adjunct Faculty, Missouri Science and Technology (formerly, University of Missouri-Rolla) taught Music 036 Jazz Band
1997 – ENTREPRENEURIALISM: Established The Burnett Music Company, Inc. at St. Robert, MO
1997 – JAZZ ARTISTRY: Purchased a matching set of Selmer (Paris) Saxophones – Series III alto and soprano
1999 – BURNETTFAMILYUS.ORG: (March 23rd) Celebrated 20th Anniversary of Marriage to the flautist, Terri Anderson Burnett at Copenhagen (Denmark)
1999 – RECORDING INDUSTRY: Debut Commercial Recording Release of “Time Flies” recorded at the former RCA Radio Studio (KTTK Radio – Max Rhoades, engineer) in Lebanon (Missouri)
1999 to 2003 – RECORDING INDUSTRY: Joined the Online Music Distribution website: MP3.com as an Artist and promoted music worldwide mostly via the Internet (San Diego)
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2001 – JAZZ JOURNALISM: Started writing articles for the original “Musings In Cb” column online at All About Jazz – a comprehensive portal and arguably the largest jazz website in the world.
2002 to 2007 – COMMUNITY SERVICE: Interned as Record Label Manager and Staff Writer for a private Kansas City-based music label.
2003 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Time Flies” was downloaded over 508,000 times by listeners from 38 countries at the close of MP3.com
2004 – JAZZ PERFORMANCE: (November) Performed for the first time as a leader in Kansas City, leading the Blue Monday Jam at the Blue Room located on the corner of historic “18th & Vine“
2006 – JAZZ PERFORMANCE: Featured Artist at The Drum Room in Kansas City
2007 – ENTREPRENEURIALISM: Formed the Artists Recording Collective, a new concept music label brand and business model, with fellow saxophonist: Erica Lindsay and pianist: Sumi Tonooka (Kansas LLC)
2007 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Featured Article in Jazz Ambassador Magazine (Kansas City)
2008 – JAZZ EDUCATION: Joined the Faculty of Kansas City Youth Jazz at personal invitation from Leon A. Brady
2009 – BURNETTFAMILYUS.COM: (March 23rd) Celebrated 30th Anniversary of marriage to the flautist, Terri Anderson Burnett at Copenhagen (Denmark)
2009 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Artists Recording Collective featured in Down Beat magazine article
2009 – SELMER PARIS SAXOPHONES: Purchased Gold Brass (CR) Neck for Selmer (Paris) Series III Alto Saxophone
2009 – JAZZ EDUCATION: Presented the Kansas City Youth Jazz 12:30 Combo at the Kansas Bandmasters Association Convention (Wichita)
2009 – BOARD OF DIRECTOR SERVICE: Elected by the organizational general membership to the Mutual Musicians Foundation At-Large Board of Directors
2009 – COMPOSITION: Participated in Black House Improvisors Collective and composed Cyclical Connotations for Residency #2
2009 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Artists Recording Collective feature in Jazz Ambassador Magazine article
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2010 – Conductor and Clinician for the KMEA Northeast All-District Honors Jazz Ensemble (Kansas)
2010 – COMMUNITY SERVICE: Live at the Hollywood Theater concert series Music Director (Leavenworth)
2011 – Accepted Marketing and Communications Manager position with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City)
2011 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in 2011 Rhythm & Ribs Jazz and Blues Festival winning the Kansas City Visitors’ Choice Award for BEST FESTIVAL
2011 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in 2011-2012 Jammin’ at the Gem performance series season exceeding requisite attendance and contributing to the organization balance sheet
2011 – KANSAS CITY PRESS: #4 on Plastic Sax Blog’s Kansas City Jazz Geniuses list …
2012 – BOARD OF DIRECTOR SERVICE: Accepted invitation of Gene Hall to join the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra Board of Directors
2012 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in 2012 Rhythm & Ribs Jazz and Blues Festival winning the Kansas City Visitors’ Choice Award for BEST FESTIVAL
2012 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in 2012-2013 Jammin’ at the Gem performance series season exceeding requisite attendance and contributing to the organization balance sheet
2012 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in Blue Room jazz club exceeding requisite attendance and contributing to the organization balance sheet
2012 – Official Endorsement: Chris Burnett is a CONN-SELMER PERFORMING ARTIST AND CLINICIAN. Chris Burnett plays Selmer (Paris) Saxophones exclusively.
2012 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in launch of a brand new website for the organization that features an enormous amount of viable content, yet is accessbile with minimum clicks
2013 – COMPOSITION: Participated in Black House Improvisors Collective and composed Osiris for Black House Collective Winter Workshop (Residency #11) collaborating with the Nelson-Aktins Museum of Art’s “Innovation Project.”
2013 – REMASTERED COLLECTORS EDITION: Never satisfied with the original engineering on his debut recording, Chris Burnett hires Don Miller of AIRBORNE AUDIO PRODUCTIONS to remix and remaster the project. ARC-2499 TIME FLIES (Remastered Collectors Edition) releases digitally in April and special edition CD in November on the Artists Recording Collective (ARC) label.
2013 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in the development and launch of AJM Mobile APP on both the APPLE APP STORE and the ANDROID MARKET; thus extending the global reach of the organization
2013 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in Kansas City’s 18th & Vine Jazz and Blues Festival (re-branded Rhythm & Ribs Jazz and Blues Festival) winning the Kansas City Visitors’ Choice Award for BEST FESTIVAL
2013 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager work with the American Jazz Museum (Kansas City) resulted in the exhibition and public programming of the Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibit American Sabor: Latinos in U.S. Popular Music reaching a large number of individuals and media outlets in the region
2014 – MARCOM HIGHLIGHT: Successful Marketing and Communications Manager for the new non-profit catalyst organization, Kansas City Jazz A.L.I.V.E. (Kansas City) contributed to significant and sustained media coverage at both, the local and national levels. His team was specifically cited in a Kansas City Business Journal article.
2014 – ADJUNCT PROFESSOR OF MUSIC: After refining his work in education to include a small private studio of students, working on the faculty of the Metropolitan Jazz Workshop program, and conducting clinics, Chris Burnett officially joined the music faculty as a woodwind instructor at Metropolitan Community Colleges (MCC-Penn Valley).
2014 – THE NEW QUARTET: Maintaining a working group to perform and record his original work, Chris Burnett forms a new ensemble using his unabbreviated first name in the title of the group – CHRISTOPHER BURNETT QUARTET to anchor the project. CbQ released “Firebird“, the first single from the new album on Labor Day, September 1, 2014 on the Artists Recording Collective (ARC) label.
2015 – STUDENT FEATURED: A former Chris Burnett saxophone student, Houston Smith is featured on Kansas City’s FOX television news affiliate. FOX 4 News “is Working 4 You” to spotlight outstanding young people and their positive accomplishments. In their weekly report called “Reaching 4 Excellence” they meet young achievers in subjects like academics, the arts, leadership, community service, volunteerism, career exploration, overcoming obstacles and heroism. Watch for Reaching 4 Excellence every Wednesday on Fox 4 News at 9 p.m. and every Thursday on Fox 4 News at 8 a.m. and noon.
2015 – ARTS GRANT PANELIST: The Missouri Arts Council appointed Mr. Burnett to serve on the Advisory Panel for Multidiscipline for one term, ending June 30, 2016.
2015 – Conductor and Clinician for the KMEA Southeast All-District Honors Jazz Ensemble (Kansas)
2016 – GUEST SPEAKER: Mr. Burnett was the guest speaker for the 2016 Martin Luther King Day Celebration at Fort Leavenworth.
2016 – KEYNOTE SPEAKER: The Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship at Drury University invited Mr. Burnett to be its first speaker in their ‘Self-Employment in the Arts’ series for 2016. Download the PowerPoint PDF of Mr. Burnett’s lecture, “The Story of a Song”.
2016 – JOB TRANSITION: Mr. Burnett leaves employment with the American Jazz Museum after 5 years of significantly contributing to that organization mission working primarily as Marketing Manager and Director of Communications, with concurrent duties at various points as Acting CEO and Director of Operations; and, immediately resumes his personal career as an arts organization & business professional, recording artist, educator and entrepreneur based in his native Kansas City area.
2016 – JOURNALIST: Mr. Burnett is hired as a journalist with a GateHouse Media publication, “The Lamp” and works for one year as the staff writer and reporter producing 150+ newspaper articles. The Lamp is the newspaper of the military installation and community of historic Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
2016 – Mr.Burnett is Member #10000839 of the Society of Professional Journalists.
2016 – In addition to being a Selmer (Paris) Saxophone endorsing artist, Mr. Burnett is now also an Official Conn-Selmer Artist Clinician which allows for funding support to organizations that utilize his educational services.
2016 – Mr. Burnett was contacted by Tarleton State University (Member of the Texas A&M University System) Fine Arts Department to present a Music Business Webinar Workshop on November 30th which was well received. This session highlighted the importance of creating innovative solutions in response to ongoing infrastructure issues of music economy.
2017 – ALBUM RELEASE: CD “Echoes of Europe” by Dino Massa Kansas City Quintet released, January 2, 2017, to international critical acclaim. Visit the project’s website for more details …
2017 – KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Mr. Burnett was invited to give the keynote speech for the VA’s Central Plains Consolidated Patient Account Center (CPAC) annual Black History Month luncheon at the Dwight D. Eisenhower VA Medical Center.
2017 – JAZZ JOURNALIST ASSOCIATION: Mr. Burnett is a professional – voting member of the Jazz Journalists Association.
2017 – KANSAS PRESS ASSOCIATION AWARD: Mr. Burnett received one of the 2017 KPA Awards of Excellence as Staff Writer for the Fort Leavenworth Lamp newspaper Third Place award, Non-daily Division III.
2017 – JOB TRANSITION: Mr. Burnett resigns position as Staff Writer and Reporter with the Fort Leavenworth Lamp Newspaper after a very successful tenure.
2017 – JAZZ ARTISTRY NOW: Mr. Burnett along with his wife, Terri Anderson Burnett, successfully launch the new model online arts magazine featuring commentary, reviews, articles and photography, titled: Jazz Artistry Now.
2017 – ASSISTANT BAND DIRECTOR USD 453: Mr. Burnett began officially working as an assistant with Dr. Jared Prost at Leavenworth High School teaching woodwinds and helping with the jazz program.
2018 – KANSAS PRESS ASSOCIATION AWARD: Mr. Burnett received one of the 2017 KPA Awards of Excellence as Staff Writer for the Fort Leavenworth Lamp newspaper First, Second and Third Place awards, Non-daily Division III.
2018 – KANSAS MUSIC EDUCATORS ASSOCIATION IN-SERVICE WORKSHOP CLINICIAN: Mr. Burnett was selected to present a clinic at the 2018 KMEA ISW in Wichita, Kansas.
2018 – BLACK DOLPHIN RESIDENCY: Mr. Burnett “leads a quintet at Black Dolphin on the first Saturday of every month in 2018, playing original material as well as compositions by the likes of Wayne Shorter.”
2018 – LICENSING DEAL: Mr. Burnett signed a licensing deal with GreenLadyRadio.com. The royalty-paying 24-7-365 broadcasting radio station will play his music at its various jazz venues in Kansas City as well as continuous worldwide streaming online.
2018 – OFFICIAL KANSAS TOURING ARTIST ROSTER: Mr. Burnett was selected by the Kansas Arts Commission for inclusion on the state touring roster. This qualification includes the Mid-America Arts Alliance 5-state region.
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- The three Military Awards listed are only a portion of the awards and letters received – the total of which would be too numerous to present in context here.
- Photographs are random highlights from all eras and credited as applicable.
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