About Us

The Kevin Mitchell 4.

We do this for the love of the music – so the band must be filled with friends. We all sincerely enjoy playing with each other. Mike is my “newest” old friend, and the rest I’ve known since high school; in Dave’s case, junior high. Bonus? Unbelievably wonderful musicians. Double bonus? Totally fun to hang with.

About the Gal and the Fellas

Barb Tippett and Kevin Mitchell.

Barb Tippett

Barb is a graduate of Lindbergh High School and has played in every musical group except string quartet. She played trombone and sang with Quintessence for five years right out of high school, took off eight years to have kids, then played with the group YESSIR! for 10 years. She then hung up the trombone because she was sick of the jokes and joined the KM4. Barb is also an actress and has appeared in many local plays and musicals, including the lead role of an evil witch in the original Beanstalk!, which Kevin wrote.

Kevin Mitchell.

Kevin M. Mitchell

Kevin started piano lessons when he was nine and feels he might just now be getting the hang of it. He played jazz bass at Lindbergh High School (only the “lab” band; alas he wasn’t good enough to play in the better band that featured Steve, Dave, and Barb). He graduated with a degree in composition from the University of Kansas City Conservatory of Music, where he played bass in jazz combos. He recorded an album of pop/jazz-flavored original tunes in 1986 on which he played most of the instruments (Steve played the saxes). He’s played in many bands in many cities (alt rock in Kansas City, punk in Tulsa), but this is the first one his mother has approved of.

Steve Kauffmann.

STEVE KAUFFMANN

Steve began playing the saxophone at age 10 and has been performing professionally in St. Louis since 1980. He’s played tenor and alto with Sundance & Brass, St. Louis Sessions Jazz Band, Mystix, Quintessence (with Barb), Meramec Symphonic and Jazz Bands and also on several studio recording projects (with Kevin). Steve’s musical influences include Paul Desmond, Phil Woods, David Sanborn, and Jay Beckenstein. He is an IT director at Emerson, which won him the prestigious “Most Likely to Pay His Utility Bill” award. In related news, Steve often gets stuck paying the check at Denny’s after gigs.

Mike Schleicher.

Mike Schleicher

Mike brings his drums, bongos, and a table of fun percussion toys to every gig. His interest in drums began as a young boy when he was inspired listening to his grandfather’s Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich records. He started playing drums at age seven, and got his first full set at nine. Very soon after that he started playing in bands and hasn’t stopped since. He’s played rock, blues, country, and all kinds of jazz. He’s been seen in the pit for local theater productions like Mame, Crazy for You, Bye Bye Birdie, and others. He also drums for his church.

Dave Eckhoff.

DAVE ECKHOFF

Dave has been plucking the four-string bass since he was a kid, and played with many prominent bands in town including Sundance. He has over 32 years of professional experience and has played it all from rock to jazz. His love of music has been passed on to his five sons. Each one plays a different instrument, and two are pursuing careers in music. When he is not busy practicing scales and working on his funk bass technique, Dave is a mild-mannered middle school principal in St. Charles. He’s the newest member of the band, so be nice to him!

Other Friends

We don’t get just anybody to sit in, but sometimes one of these great, fun, seasoned players do: Drummers Clancy Newell and Dave Runde; sax player Vince Sala; and vocalist Valerie Tichacek join us when one of the others can’t, and it’s always a good time!

Book the Kevin Mitchell 4

To book The Kevin Mitchell 4, please contact Kevin.