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Surprisingly Hip is Western Illinois’ premier jazz combo.  The versatile group regularly performs across the Midwest playing jazz standards, blues, Latin styles, and rock tunes.  The group, were featured artists for the Carl Sandburg Festival and made their Concert Hall Debut to 1500 people in Lincoln, Nebraska at the Lied Center of Performing Arts.  

The Ensemble takes pride in its versatility.  Be it jazz standards in an imitate bar or Blues tunes on major stages, Surprisingly Hip adapts to the needs of the listeners.  Such adaptability is seen in its instrumentation as well.  The group regularly brings in other musicians based on the needs of the performances.  Musicians that regularly gig with Surprisingly Hip include: Justin Mooney, drums; Art Fowler, guitar; Dick Johnston, harmonica; Kara Leigh, vocals; John Price, vocals and guitar; Steve Richter, clarinet; and Chris Robbins, steel guitar.

To ensure continuity, Surprisingly Hip has two core members, Brian Daw on bass and Julia Andrews on piano and vocals.  The duo, now in their 6th year of playing together, ensure a stability of sound and a professional standard of excellence.  Daw plays both electric and upright bass in jazz combos, big bands, praise bands, country bands, folk bands, and the Knox-Galesburg Symphony. Brian is a violin maker, graduating from the Violin Making School of America in Salt Lake City. He currently runs his own business making and repairing string instruments.  Andrews is a sought after performer of jazz and chamber music throughout the Midwest.  She made her international debut in Vietnam this November at the Ho Chi Minh Conservatory Contemporary Music Festival .   Andrews is on the music faculty of Monmouth College where she teaches piano and theory.


Venue Booking

    Music Publishing

        Artist Development

P.O. Box 372
Burlington, IA 52601