The jazz studies program includes two big bands, multiple combos, jazz improvisation, jazz history, jazz pedagogy for music educators, and jazz arranging. Jazz Ensemble One took first place honors at the Western States Jazz Festival in 1989 and 1990. As a result of these wins, the band accepted an invitation to perform at the 1990 Playboy Jazz Festival. The band also was the first place winner in the four-year college category in both 1994 and 1996 at the Fullerton College Jazz Festival. Jazz Ensemble One was awarded four outstanding performance awards at the 1991 Notre Dame Jazz Festival. In 1997, the band took away nine more outstanding performance awards from the Notre Dame festival.
Jazz Ensemble One has recorded three compact discs. The first, Year of the Cow, released in 1993 on Walrus Records, was one of only two college band recordings awarded a five-star rating in DownBeat magazine that year. The second, Herding Cats, was released in 1994 on Sea Breeze/Vista Records. The Vintage Year, a 1996 Sea Breeze/Vista Records release, received a four-star DownBeat review.
Information on Jazz Fest 2013 coming soon.