Leader / Vocals / Timbales / Trombone
J.D. Hill is the founder and leader of The Touch Of Class Band. He is a dynamic front man with many years of experience putting together high energy show bands. J.D. has formal training in voice, percussion, and trombone. He contributes to the group's vocal and musical arrangements and is responsible for the incredible choreography. J.D. is certainly the man who puts and keeps it all together.
Tammora C. Holloway
Tammora C. Holloway, known as Tammy, was born and raised in Oakland, CA. Singing is her passion. She was heavily influenced by her mother’s angelic voice. She started singing at a very early age. She comes from a talented family of singers and musicians. Tammy has performed in her uncles bands, and has also been in many gospel groups. She has a very wide range with alot of versatility. She can do a jazzy rendition of “Summertime”, and then bring down the house with the funky syncopated style of Mary J. Blige & Chaka Khan. Tammy’s excited about what she brings to TOC, - her voice and total dedication.
Tiffany Barwick began her love of singing and performance as a toddler, performing "We Are the World" on her great grandmother's coffee table. From there she spent years learning her craft through church and school choirs and musicals, later to attend the School for the Creative and Performing Arts (SCAPA) program in her high school in Lexington, Kentucky with a vocal music focus. She spent the following years as a soloist with a variety of musical groups ranging from jazz/swing standards, to Motown, and even country/blues.
Jeanne Parson started playing the piano as a little girl. She holds a BA in Piano Performance and a Master’s degree in Electronic Music and Recording Media. After 4 years in college undergrad jazz band, she played in a pop music group for 12 years, touring the US and Canada. After grad school, she switched from performance to music creation, integrating music and speech into new technology as a composer and sound designer for Atari Games, Leapfrog Toys, and now for Microsoft. But she never lost the love of performing in bands, and you’ll see and hear it in every performance in every TOC performance.
Guitar / Bass / Vocals
Jerry Benjamin brings over 30 years of experience to TOC. He is a phenomenal guitarist and a recorded songwriter. Jerry has shared his talent as an instructor, producing students who have scored number one hits, platinum albums, and AMA awards. Jerry's soulful, jazzy guitar is a tremendous asset to The Touch Of Class Band.
Andre Van Lewis
Bass / Vocals
Andre's musical influences started way back in the 70's with such players as Larry Graham, Stanley Clarke, Louis Johnson and Jaco Pastorius. Since then he has played with Motown's "Temptations" as well as other local greats that include Ms Taylor P. Collins, Jackie Payne, The Blues Hall of Fame entertainer Alvin Draper, J.C. Smith's Back to Back Blues Band, Billy Davis Blues Band, C.P. Love. Andre has a very smooth, funky, solid style of playing that definitely adds to the show and excitement of The Touch Of Class Band. Andre is also the leader and bassist of his own smooth jazz group "Just-AzZ"
Brandon "B" Renteria Sr.
Drums / Vocals
Born and raised in San Jose, Ca by two parents who shared a love of music. His father was a versatile singer who loved all genres of music and was always joined by Brandon's mother in singing harmonies with the family. At the age of five Brandon was taught to play the drums by both his older brothers Johnny and Robert Renteria. He started playing 1st trumpet in the 5th grade all the way up until he was a sophomore in high school. (He started playing clubs at the age of 12.) Brandon’s oldest brother Johnny taught him the style of David Garibaldi (Tower Of Power) who was taught by the Bay Area’s own Chuck Brown. Brandon has had the privilege and honor to play with a variety of Notable Musician & Artists such as legendary percussionist Pete “Pops” Escovedo and his son Juan Escovedo, Richard Aguon (Whispers drummer), Joe Bataan, Little Joe, C.P. Love, Malo, Jorge Santana, Brenton Wood, Lakeside, Mic Gillette (1stTrumpet Tower of Power) and Skip Mesquite (1st Sax Tower of Power), Ron Moton (1st Sax ConFunkShun), Carl Carlton (“Bad Mama Jamma”), Rose Royce, Rodney “O”, Joe Cooley, and Redbone just to name a few.... Aside from the solid drumming that you'll get from "B", you'll appreciate this mans vocals.
Trombone / Keyboard
Ted Henderson's played trombone since the early 70's. Born in Chicago, his early influences included trombonist Fred Wesley and bands like Earth, Wind and Fire. In 1988, Ted came to the Bay Area and established himself as a composer, performer, recording engineer and teacher specializing in electronic music. In 2002, Ted became a public school band director whose award-winning groups performed in Las Vegas, Chicago, Los Angeles and all over the Bay Area. These days, Ted serves as principal of an arts-integration elementary school. Ted holds degrees in composition, electronic music, music education and school administration.
Steven was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio and started playing semi-professionally as a trumpet player in German Polka bands as early as 12 years old. Through Steven's high school years, he performed as a member of Drum Corps International, playing lead trumpet with Music City Drum Corps, The Bluestars, and Phantom Regiment.
Steven majored in Music Education and Trumpet during his undergrad, performing as section leader and soloist of the Western Kentucky University Big Red Marching Band for 3 years, as well as lead trumpet in the top jazz band at WKU.
You can hear him on Of Our New Day Begun, LIVE in Charleston, and as the trumpet soloist in College Heights.
Steven graduated with his Bachelor's in Music Education from WKU in 2017, and is currently the Director of the music department at Orchard School in San Jose, California, while also working with the Los Gatos marching band during the fall.
Alongside Touch of Class, Steven is also a freelance trumpet player in the Bay Area, playing with the Äwesome Orchestra out of Oakland, and performing as a solo cornet player in Pacific Brass out of the Monterey Bay Area.
"Moving to the Bay has been a rush and playing alongside the great musicians in TOC is amazing. Can’t wait to see you at a show!"
Bendik "Grover" Kleveland
Bendik grew up in Norway and learned classical music. In high school he enjoyed performing oboe with the Oslo youth symphony orchestra. While his peers listened to the new local band AHA that started to gain international fame, Bendik was the odd guy who blasted music by Louis Armstrong (jazz), Andrew Crouch (gospel) and Grover Washington Jr. (smooth jazz). After he came to California, he took up the saxophone and started learning about improvisation. He played with the Stanford Jazz Orchestra and started the Retro Notes. Whether it was the Grover Washington Jr. T-shirt or the similarity in name to a former president, nobody knows, but two bands independently gave him the stage name Grover Kleveland. Bendik, who is more of an introvert, finally caved in and Grover triumphantly took over. Grover was stoked to make it into of the Touch of Class band! The auditions were like a dream: to feel the awesome pulse of the rhythm section while playing the music he has listened to for all these years felt awesome. Grover Kleveland is looking forward to grooving with Touch of Class on a stage near you, while Bendik is cautiously watching.
Mike got started on saxophone by accident in 1971, when he went home and told his mom that the instrument that looked like a black stick (clarinet!) was called a saxophone and he wanted to play it. Looking back forty years now, he would go on to learn the clarinet, having learned a little bassoon as well. In the middle of high school, he switched from alto to baritone, and never looked back. Some of his prior affiliations include the De Anza College Wind Ensemble, the Blowkings, Masada, South Bay Big Band Jazz, and other community ensembles. Mike has also toured with the California Repercussions, a 70 piece street band that has delighted audiences worldwide, including Brazil and Australia. The Touch Of Class Band has always wanted a "bari"-sax... now they have one!
John is a sound engineer with 15 years of experience running audio systems. His work history includes Paramounts Great America, JK Sound, and Trucco Lighting & Sound. In addition, he spent three years aboard Carnival Cruise Lines running large format audio consoles for full scale Broadway style production shows and lounge bands. While on board John was fortunate to provide audio support to some of the best musicians found around the world. In his spare time he regularly volunteers his technical expertise to a local public school district and community events.
John is thrilled to run the audio system and technical aspects for the Touch of Class band.