Music Faculty


Learn more about JJC's talented music faculty members: 

  • Adam Cowger

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    Adam Cowger is currently an Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Percussion Studies at Joliet Junior College. As a performer, Adam recently formed the Screaming Norwegians percussion duo with fellow percussion educator/performer Ben Wahlund. He maintains an active performing schedule with the tribute band The Chicago Experience and numerous professional groups in the Chicagoland area.

    In addition, Adam has performed at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, twice at the prestigious Montreux Jazz Festival, and can be heard on Liam Teague and Robert Chappell’s recent CD Open Window.

    Adam holds a master’s degree from Northern Illinois University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Dakota, both in percussion performance. His principal teachers include Greg Beyer, Michael Blake, Robert Chappell, Rich Holly and Rodrigo Villanueva. Adam is proud to endorse Innovative Percussion sticks and mallets and Tycoon Percussion instruments.

  • Rich Moore

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    Mr. Moore is an Assistant Professor of Music at Joliet Junior College. At JJC, he teaches elementary and advanced music theory, aural skills, jazz history, applied saxophone, clarinet and flute lessons, as well as jazz improvisation. He also directs the JJC Jazz Band and the JJC Faculty Jazz Quintet. He is currently working on developing coursework for a harmonic approach to ear training.

    Professor Moore has maintained an active performance schedule as a multi-woodwind player since the age of seventeen. He has shared the stage and recorded with many of Chicago's premiere jazz musicians and has performed in nearly all of the major local venues, such as The Chicago Jazz Festival, The Chicago Latin Jazz Festival, Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, The Green Mill, The Jazz Showcase, Andy’s Jazz Club, Constellation, Wentz Hall at North Central College, The Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago, The Hyde Park Jazz Festival, The Star Plaza Theater, The McAninch Arts Center at College of DuPage, The Beverley Arts Center, The Village of Bolingbrook Performing Arts Center, Rialto Theater, the Arcada and the Skokie Theater, to name a few. In 2005, Rich had the unique opportunity to perform on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. In 2016, Rich toured Lima, Peru and later performed in the Made in Chicago Festival in Poznań, Poland with Juan Pastor’s Chinchano. While his main focus is jazz, he has regular opportunities to make music in a variety of other genres.

    Professor Moore has previously been on the faculty at Northern Illinois University (NIU) and Moraine Valley Community College (MVCC). In addition to serving as Jazz Combo Coordinator at NIU, he taught jazz and classical saxophone, coached saxophone quartet and served as a clinician and guest artist. In the Fall of 2017, he was again invited to teach at NIU as a Guest Lecturer in jazz saxophone and clarinet. At MVCC, he served as Clarinet Instructor and jazz clinician.

    Mr. Moore is in-demand as a clinician and maintains a home private lesson studio with top students from the Joliet, Bolingbrook, Plainfield, Naperville, Aurora, and Oswego school districts.

    Professor Moore holds a B.M. degree in Saxophone Performance with an emphasis in Jazz Studies and a M.M. degree in Clarinet Performance from Northern Illinois University.

  • Charles Morgan

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    Charles Morgan is a Grammy nominated, award-winning music educator. He is a Professor of Music, the Music Coordinator, and Director of Bands at Joliet Junior College. Born and raised in New Lenox, Illinois, Charles studied trombone with Jerry E. Lewis, Edward Kleinhammer, and Mark Fisher. He received his Associate of Arts degree from Joliet Junior College in 1991 and his Bachelor of Music emphasis in education from Northern Illinois University in 1993.

    His teaching duties at Joliet Junior College include applied brass, music fundamentals, and conducting. He conducts the 90-member JJC Community Band. Charles has served as an adjudicator throughout the state at many junior and senior high school music festivals. In 2010 Joliet Junior College honored him with the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award. Charles is also a three time GRAMMY Music Educator Award Quarterfinalist for 2014, 2015, and 2018. In 2012, Charles was selected and continues to serve as the Music Education editor for The College Music Society’s online Symposium. Charles is also a member of Phi Beta Mu - The International Bandmasters Fraternity.

    Charles was Director of Bands at Glenwood School for Boys in Glenwood, Illinois; Laraway School in Joliet, Illinois; and Shabbona Middle School in Morris, Illinois. In 1998 he was hired as the Jazz Band Director at Joliet Junior College. He received his Masters of Music Education from VanderCook College of Music in 2003. In 2004 he was selected for the bands and brass position at Joliet Junior College.

    As a performer he has shared the stage with Gary Puckett and the Union Gap, The Grass Roots, Tommy James and the Shondells, Peter Noone and Herman’s Hermits, Jay and the Americans, Lou Christie, Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, Mary Wilson of the Supremes, CTA featuring Danny Seraphin and Bill Champlain, The New Invaders, and The Buddy Rich Big Band. Charles has been a member of The Buckinghams for over 20 years. With The Buckinghams he has appeared on Good Morning America, NBC Concerts at Noon, WGN; recorded a special for PBS “60's Pop Rock Reunion” released on CD/DVD by Time Life; and performed at both the 55th and 56th Presidential Inaugurations in Washington D.C. He can also be heard on their recordings “Yesterday, Today,” “Live and Well,” “Standing Room Only,” “Reaching Back,” “Solid Gold,” “The Joy of Christmas,” their CD/DVD “Up Close,” and most recently he appeared on the WTTW special concert series "Cornerstones of Rock", which is currently airing nationally and has been released on CD/DVD.

    As an arranger/composer Charles has several Jazz Ensemble charts, Brass Quintet and Concert Band pieces to his name. He has also collaborated as the horn arranger for The Buckinghams’ recording “Reaching Back,” “The Joy of Christmas,” and their latest album “Flashback.”

    Charles plays Getzen trombones and is honored to be a Getzen Clinician. Recently he has been added to the Etymotic “ETY•Heads” team promoting their line of music hearing protection.

  • Philip Spencer

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    Philip Spencer is enjoying a career spanning more than thirty years as a full-time professional musician, including the duties of award-winning educator and composer, conductor of choral ensembles in the United States and Europe, church musician, and concert organist.

    He is currently in his seventeenth year as Professor of Music and Director of Choral and Vocal Music in the Fine Arts Department of Joliet Junior College, where he conducts both of the college choral ensembles; teaches applied and class voice, and harpsichord; designed and teaches a course in world music; and serves as Coordinator of the Musica Viva Concert Series. Prior to coming to JJC, he was Chair of the Music Department and Professor of Music at Grand View College, Des Moines, Iowa, and a full-time church musician in several Ohio, Minnesota, and Illinois congregations. Mr. Spencer is also the Founding Conductor Emeritus of the Edina Chorale, one of the Minneapolis area’s finest community-based choral ensembles.

    Mr. Spencer earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Wittenberg University; holds the Master of Music degree from the Yale University School of Music and Institute of Sacred Music; has completed one academic year of church music study in Berlin, Germany; and has done doctoral work in choral conducting and organ at the University of Iowa.

    In addition to his college teaching, Mr. Spencer is Founding Conductor of the Lutheran Youth Choir International, a select touring ensemble of high school singers from throughout the United States and Germany; and Founding Artistic Director of the biennial Festival of Global Vocal Music at Mansfeld Castle in Mansfeld, Germany.

    As a composer, Mr. Spencer was awarded first prize in the Roger Wagner International Choral Composition Contest at the University of Southern California at Los Angeles; was a finalist in the Ithaca College Choral Composition Contest; and was the winner of the Illinois Chapter, American Choral Directors Association 2014 Choral Composition Contest. He currently serves on the Executive Board of Illinois ACDA as the chair of its annual Choral Composition Contest. In 2011, Mr. Spencer was named the recipient of the twenty-fourth annual Saint Genesius Award by Lewis University “for extraordinary achievement in choral music and music education.”

  • David Nuccio

    David Nuccio, Associate Professor of Music, Music Technology Coordinator and Music Advisor at Joliet Junior College, teaches courses in music technology, music theory, music history and jazz piano.

    David holds a master’s degree in Music Theory (cum laude) from the American Conservatory of Music and has completed additional graduate work at Northern Illinois University and at DePaul University where he studied Orchestration with Manny Mendelson and Arranging with Cliff Colnot. His undergraduate degree from the American Conservatory is in Music Theory and Piano, where he also studied Jazz Piano with the highly-respected jazz artist Willie Pickens and classical piano with William Browning.

    David Nuccio has served as musical director for JJC productions of Tommy, Little Shop of Horrors, La Cage aux Folles, Godspell, and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. He also has considerable experience in commercial music production as a business owner of Nuccio Music Productions having written and produced radio and television ads for McDonalds, Coca Cola, Coors beer and more.

    Professor Nuccio developed JJC's Certificate in Music Technology program, which was introduced fall 2014. He has developed JJC courses in Music Business, Music Technology as well and The History of Rock and Roll. David began performing as a professional musician during the 1970s. He is the founding member, leader and bass guitarist with The New Invaders, a theatrical 1960s tribute musical act appearing in performances with The Buckinghams, The Ides of March, The Cryan Shames, Eric Burdon and The Animals and Ronnie Spector. David also continues to perform as a jazz pianist with various jazz ensembles in the Chicago area.