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Greg Haugesag has been surrounded by music his whole life.
The following is a biography with a focus on his musical activities.


Greg was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, son of Stan (a professional trombonist) and Jane Haugesag. Piano lessons came first, then the trombone in the school band. The lure to trumpet/flugelhorn came from local Minneapolis musicians Jack Coan, Fred Webster and Dan Tetzlaff. The “hook was set” when Greg saw a "Shorty Rogers and His Giants" television special in 1961 and when a local drummer, Bob Pope, gave Greg two jazz albums (one featuring trumpet player Blue Mitchell and the other, flugelhorn player Joe Hunt). Off to lessons from Ronald Hasselman of the Minnesota Orchestra, and a couple years with The Minneapolis Youth Orchestra.  At this time his musical interests were leaning toward the west coast "Cool School" style of jazz, ie. Shorty Rogers, Chet Baker, Jack Sheldon, Conti Candoli, etc.  Roosevelt High School brought on an inspirational three year association with the late Bobby Peterson (legendary Minnesota jazz piano player) and others who went on to music careers.


After graduating from high school, Haugesag  joined a rhythm and blues band, "The Sir Ralieghs" and a "power horn" band called "Oedipus Rex".  Around this period Greg found time to form his own combo for weddings and private parties, studio work and occasionally playing with his father's big band, "The Stan Haugesag Band", as well as forming an unusual blues band combining amplified trumpet (using a King Octavoice tone divider and an echoplex), bass and drums.

Greg attended The University of Minnesota, playing in the concert band and marching band for a time before joining the U.S.Marines. His time in the service was spent playing trumpet with the 2nd Division Marine Corps Band out of Jacksonville, North Carolina.


Greg is pictured here with The Solid Senders.


The mid 70's found Greg back in Minneapolis playing professionally, freelancing, recording and traveling throughout the mid west with a polka band "Gene Thomas and the Jolly Bros.", as well as playing and recording with Minnesota legendary tenor saxophone player Morris Wilson, and his bands. The "seeds were sown" at this time to start off years of great jam sessions and many permutations of "The Greg Haugesag Quartet". In the scuffle for work after leaving the "Jolly Bros.", Greg was given the opportunity to play and contract fashion shows for the Dayton-Hudson Corporation and student shows at The Minnesota college of Art and Design, in Minneapolis. In the late 70's, Greg joined a 50's/60's rock revival band "Danny and The Cruisers", once again traveling a lot.

1979 brought on a new era, with the move to a basement apartment, where almost daily jam sessions were held. Greg had the "cream of the crop" of local aspiring jazz musicians working on new tunes, arrangements and honing their improvisational skills. The ten years of "Garden Level Jams" is a whole subject that will be covered more thoroughly in the future.


Stan Haugesag leading the band New Year's Eve 1990.
Greg can be seen near the center of the photo playing trumpet.

      The 80's were a very busy time with more than a lifetime of fun projects. The focus was studying jazz music, by forming groups to perform the various styles and music of many jazz composers. Greg owes a debt of gratitude to two musicians, especially William "Bill" Shiell and the late bassist Corky Roberts. With Bill's encouragement Greg landed a gig with "The Corky Roberts Band", a jazz combo playing at The Gem Lounge, an actual jazz club in downtown Minneapolis. That lasted a couple years and was a privileged, inspirational and educational experience. Greg was given the job of hosting the "Blue Monday" jam sessions. There will be more about "The Gem" (including pictures) later.    


 To Be Continued . . .



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