Full-time Music Faculty
Performing Arts Division Chair
Vocal Jazz Ensembles, Jazz Vocal Technique, Jazz Vocal Improvisation
John Knutson is Director of Choral Studies at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, CA. He is also a member of the professional vocal jazz ensemble Vocalogy, formed by Phil Mattson in 1998. John directed the California All-State Vocal Jazz Choir in 2006, and in May 2009 John was named Cuesta College’s Teacher of the Year. Under his direction, Cuesta Voce has performed at the American Choral Directors Association National Convention, the Montreux Jazz Festival, and the International Association for Jazz Education Convention. The Cuesta Chamber Singers havereceived 2nd place in both the California International Choral Competition and the Vokal Total Competition in Graz, Austria.John holds a Masters in Conducting degree from Northern Arizona University and a Bachelors in Piano Performance from the University of Minnesota.
Interim Coordinator of the CPAC
Jennifer Martin joined the Music Faculty at Cuesta College in the summer of 2004 as the conductor of the Cuesta Wind Ensemble. In addition to her conducting duties, she coordinates the department's Applied Music program, and teaches Class Guitar. In 2008, she was selected to be the Performing Arts Division Chair, and was appointed to the post of Interim Coordinator of Cuesta’s new Cultural and Performing Arts Center in 2009. She became a staff conductor for the San Luis Obispo Wind Orchestra in 2010.
Previous to her appointment at Cuesta, she was the Music Department Chair and conductor
of the Reno Winds and the Truckee Meadows Community Orchestra at Truckee Meadows Community
College in Reno, NV, where she was the founding faculty of the Music Department.
Cuesta Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Combos, Jazz Improvisation, Music Theory
Ron McCarley is the Director of Jazz Studies at Cuesta College where he has built the program up to include two big bands and eight combos. His bands have received many awards under his direction. He has been teaching college level jazz for 20 years and has judged at many festivals including the Reno International Jazz Festival and the Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival and presented at CMEA, JEN and NFA about jazz education. A saxophone player and a doubler, he does studio work, appears as a featured artist and plays around Central and Southern California. Some of the musicians he has performed or recorded with are: Diane Schuur, Manhattan Transfer, The Temptations, Hanson, Adam Benjamin, Larry Koonse, Darek Oles, and Charlie Shoemake. He recently recorded a CD of Brazilian chore music called Choro de Ouro. He and his wife, Laura, live in Morro Bay with their four children.
Recording Arts, Music Theory, Jazz Arranging and Composition, Jazz Piano, Jazz Trumpet
George Stone has enjoyed a rewarding career in music education for 24 years. He is Director of Audio Technology and teaches Music Theory and Composition at Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA. In 2005 he was given the Cuesta College Outstanding Academic Employee and Teacher of the Year award.
His 20-year career as a festival adjudicator and clinician has included the CMEA, CBDA, SCSBOA organizations and countless jazz festivals throughout the country.
George has been guest composer/conductor for all levels of jazz honor bands and as a composer he has been commissioned to write for many nationally recognized high school and college programs. His compositions and arrangements are published worldwide.
Prior to education, George worked as a musician and composer for live shows and television and has composed for CBS, NBC, HBO, The Tonight Show and Disney. He is an in-demand recording engineer and producer who also performs regularly on trumpet and piano. His latest recording entitled THE REAL DEAL and newly published charts can be found at www.georgestonemusic.com.