Members


Ashley Tauber - Soprano Saxophone 


Ashley Tauber has been the Director of Bands & Orchestras at Earle B. Wood Middle School in Rockville, MD since 2009. 

A native of New Rochelle, NY, Ashley earned a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education in 2009, and a Master of Education Degree in Human Development in 2014, both from the University of Maryland, College Park, where she was the three-year saxophone section leader in the university marching band, The Mighty Sound of Maryland.


She has studied saxophone with Dale Underwood and Chris Vadala

Ashley holds current memberships in the National Association for Music Education and the Maryland Music Educators Association. She is the soprano saxophonist of the Free State Saxophone Quartet.















Joe Briscuso - Alto Saxophone

Joe Briscuso is a teacher at Brooke Grove Elementary in Olney, Maryland. He has taught private saxophone and clarinet lessons for over 25 years. His studio is compromised of students from Montgomery, Howard, and Baltimore counties.

Joe grew up in Baltimore County and graduated with degrees from Towson State University and Loyola College. He has studied privately with his father, Dr. Joseph Briscuso, Chris Ford, and Glenn Cashman.

In addition to teaching his private studio, Joe is also an adjudicator for various solo and ensemble festivals. He has adjudicated festivals in Baltimore, Carroll, Howard, and Montgomery Counties, as well as the Maryland State Solo and Ensemble Festival.


















Brett Taylor - Tenor Saxophone

Brett Taylor served as Band Director at Our Lady of Good Counsel High School from 2002 to 2017. Under his leadership the instrumental ensembles at Good Counsel consistently received top ratings at music festivals throughout the nation and abroad, including performances in New York, Atlanta, Orlando, Toronto, and the Bahamas. Brett was responsible for establishing the Marching Falcons at Good Counsel which has grown to over fifty members since its inception. Brett now works as an Account Executive for CCIS Travel.

A native of Silver Spring, MD, Brett attended Our Lady of Good Counsel High School and then went on to study Music Education at Towson University earning his Bachelor of Science degree in 1997. From 1998 until 2000, Brett served as Director of Instrumental Music at White Oak Middle School in Montgomery County. He received his Masters of Music in Music Performance in 2002 from the University of Maryland where he served as Graduate Assistant for the University of Maryland Bands. Along with managing logistical aspects of the large band program at Maryland, he assisted the director of the Mighty Sound of Maryland Marching Band with music and drill rehearsal, music arranging, and co-directed the basketball pep band. Brett is an Honorary Member of the Gamma Xi Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi, the National Honorary Fraternity of College Bandmembers and holds current memberships in the Washington Archdiocesan Music Teachers Council, the National Association for Music Education and the Maryland Music Educators Association.

Brett studied saxophone with Dr. Joseph Briscuso, Dale Underwood, Chris Vadala, and James Houlik and conducting with John Wakefield. A versatile performer on tenor and soprano saxophone, Brett maintains an active schedule as a soloist and clinician. He is the tenor saxophonist and a founding member of the Free State Saxophone Quartet.









Phil Barnes - Baritone Saxophone

Phil Barnes teaches Band, Orchestra, Jazz Band, Music Technology and AP Music Theory at James Hubert Blake High School, the fine arts signature school in the Northeast Consortium of Montgomery County Public Schools. From 2003 until 2017 he was the Director of Bands & Orchestras and Chairman of the Music Department at Rockville High School in Rockville, MD. In 2009, the RHS Music program was named a finalist in the GRAMMY Foundation's Signature Schools program, which recognizes outstanding public school music programs throughout the nation. In 2013, he was recognized as Rockville High School's Teacher of the Year. In addition to his duties at Blake, Phil has coached, conducted and managed several All-County and All-State ensembles.

A native of Salisbury, MD, Phil earned a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education in 2002, and a Master of Education Degree in Human Development in 2010, both from the University of Maryland, College Park, where he was a two-year Drum Major for the university marching band, The Mighty Sound of Maryland. He has studied saxophone with Bryant Wharton, Dale Underwood and Chris Vadala, and conducting with Edward Maclary and John Wakefield. He has also completed post-graduate studies in educational administration at Towson University.

Phil holds current memberships in the National Association for Music Education and the Maryland Music Educators Association. He maintains an active schedule as a clinician on music technology, an adjudicator for various music festivals and an “on-call” musician for several local performing groups. A versatile performer on instruments of both the saxophone and brass families, Phil has performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Annapolis Wind Symphony and Baltimore's Marching Ravens, and he is the baritone saxophonist and a founding member of the Free State Saxophone Quartet.
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