A 2013 graduate of the University of Illinois School of Music, and a 2009 graduate of Downers Grove North High School, Jesse Backes is an active percussion instructor and writer/music arranger in the Chicago area. In addition to his work with the drumline at DGN, Mr. Backes is currently the percussion director and marching percussion arranger at Batavia HS, the assistant percussion director and battery arranger at Marian Catholic HS, the battery caption head at Cavaliers Indoor Percussion, and is a member of the percussion staff with the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps. He also teaches the drumline at Northern Illinois University and will be teaching and arranging for the University of Illinois drumline starting in 2016.
Mr. Backes' performance career includes a heavy background in marching percussion with membership in Green Thunder Percussion (2007 - 09), Gateway Indoor Percussion (2011), Colts Drum and Bugle Corps (2010), and The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps (2011 - 13). In 2011, Mr. Backes helped The Cavaliers acquire the Fred Sanford High Percussion Trophy for the first time since 2000. He spent his final season with The Cavaliers in the roles of both the snare drum section leader and drum sergeant and finished his career with the corps by performing as part of a clinic at the 2013 PAS International Convention.
"I'm very excited to be able to give back to my Alma Mater," said Backes. "I'm thrilled to work alongside some of my most influential educational and personal mentors as a member of the Trojan Marching Band staff."
Welcome to the team, and welcome home, Mr. Backes!