Roger Wilder Trio
Roger Wilder became interested in music through his father’s (Donald Wilder, b. 1932), mother’s (Alison Herriott Wilder, b. 1935), and sister’s (Laura, b. 1958) piano playing and brother’s (Chris, b. 1960) drumming. Wilder started piano lessons at age 8 and trombone lessons at age 9. Through the influence of drum teacher Vinnie Ruggiero, brother Chris became interested in jazz and started drumming professionally as a teenager. Roger consequently began studying jazz through undergraduate camps at the Eastman School of Music and privately from pianist Barry Kiener. He entered the University of Miami in 1982 as a trombonist and after switching his principal instrument to piano, was graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Music Engineering Technology in 1986.
Wilder remained in Miami, where he met and married Simone Briand. He worked as a pianist there with local musicians including John Bailey, Gary Campbell, Alice Day, Rich Franks, Tom Garling, Alan Harris, Jesse Jones, Dennis Marks, Bill Peeples, Barry Ries, Jon Secada, and Don Wilner, and recorded with Phil Flanigan and Duffy Jackson. Wilder also taught jazz piano at Miami – Dade community College for 4 years.
From 1995 – 2000, Simone and Roger Wilder lived in Ossining, NY and added two daughters to the family: Lilah (1997), and Annabelle (1999). He worked there with Howie Lawrence, Carmen Leggio, Rob Scheps, Walter Urban, Langston Wertz, Gary Wofsey, and recorded with Glenda Davenport, Jon Doty, and Chuck Zeuren.
In 2000, the Wilder family moved to the Kansas City area, where Wilder has worked with the Boulevard Big Band, Colleen Cassidy, Angela Hagenbach, Sons of Brasil, and the Westport Art Ensemble, among others.