Meet The Band

Music is an incredible gift from God and a key feature in our worship gatherings. Drawing on a diverse selection from the modern worship movement (David Crowder, Israel Houghton, Enter the Worship Circle, Delirious, Hillsong United, Robbie Seay Band, Gungor, Rend Collective, and others), reworked hymns and spirituals, and our own original songs, our band helps us to connect with God and give him thanks. We also feature occasional special guest worship leaders such as Glenn Kaiser, Ro8, The Spares, Ami Moss, Aracely Bock, and Altar.


ConnorConnor Gibson…vocals, guitar

Worship Leader at Redeemer Park Ridge

I love people, music, and Jesus. So it made sense when I felt God calling me into Worship Ministry as a sophomore at the University of Nebraska. A new school and 500 miles later, I found (and currently find) myself at North Park University studying Music in Worship. I’m excited to cultivate and grow alongside worshippers of Jesus as we, together, run the race marked out for us in unashamed, authentic worship.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship.”

-Romans 12:1

James Pessin…Drums, Guitar

Worship Leader at Redeemer Chicago, Audio Electronics Engineer

My grandma got in trouble for mixing in speakeasy style piano when playing for her Baptist church’s Sunday school back in the 50s.  My mom and dad formed a band with their friends in the 70s to travel around central Illinois playing folksy worship tunes in churches that didn’t have their own musicians.  I got my start drumming along with cheesy southern gospel ballads at church in the late 90s.  Music has been an invaluable way I’ve connected to Christian community and a powerful way I’ve connected to God.
Influences: 60s soul, U2, Southern rock, Talking Heads, Chicago blues, and African Spirituals

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Andrea Santiago…vocals

Worship Leader at Redeemer Chicago

I grew up in a suburb just outside New York City. My father was very musical and rubbed his musical influences of Latin jazz, jazz, and gospel on me at a very young age. I learned to sing all types of music and have an appreciation for it. I’ve been singing since about age 7 and have pursued singing competitions throughout high school, competing in Nationals for Fine Arts Music Festival. I then went on to join college choir singing in Tour Choir and Chamber Choir at Lycoming College. In every city I’ve lived in, I’ve made sure to get heavily involved in a worship team as that is something I am most passionate for. It has been a wonderful privilege serving here at Redeemer Church as a part of our worship team.

Other fun facts about me are I went to undergrad at Lycoming College in Williamsport, PA and then went for my Master’s in Mental Health Counseling at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL. I am currently a crisis therapist responding to calls all around the city of Chicago. I’m an avid reader, a passive gamer, and an eager learner. Also, I call that carbonated beverage “Soda” not “Pop”.

Rachel Quest…vocals

Ministry Coordinator, Redeemer Church

I’ve  been singing in the Encounter Band since about 2005.  It’s been a privilege to work with such gifted, committed and faithful musicians. 

I have a background in literature and teaching and recently earned my Masters in English.  If I could, I’d read all the time — some of my favorite books (among a constantly growing list) include 1984, Catch 22, A Good Man is Hard to Find, Life of Pi and Breakfast of Champions.  I love my husband, my family, this church, writing, crossword puzzles, live music, singing, air hockey, summertime, and traveling.

 

Dan Tornil

Dan Tornil…bass

Environmental Engineer

I have played bass since the 4th grade, beginning with upright bass. I began playing bass guitar my senior year in high school. I guess I’m a founding member of the Encounter band. I play guitar and have also played with the bands Verina, the Leah Galyean Band and the Spares.
I like moshing, photography, the Olympics and World Cup Soccer as well as coffee shops.
I have been to Cornerstone seven years in a row.
My favorite bands are U2, Burlap to Cashmere, Midnight Oil, Yes, SixPence None the Richer, Bjork, Nirvana and Steven Delopoulos.

 

Dan GlowenDan Glowen…drums

Accountant

I began playing drums in 8th grade and haven’t looked back since. Clearly I enjoy music, but I also enjoy watching the Cubs and Bears and playing any sport I haven’t learned yet (and some that I have already learned). I also like to find time to sit down with a cup of coffee and relax listening to some Beatles or Coldplay.

 

Michelle WillisMichelle Willis…vocals

I’ve been singing in the Encounter Band since about 2007.  This greatly enhances my worship experience and helps me feel a very authentic connection to the living God.  I hope our music helps to draw others into that most special relationship as well!  I love singing anything from classical to gospel and most things in between (aside from country and rap).  Besides singing in the band, I am Mom to Megan (almost 3) and Christian (6 months), and have been happily married to my husband Mike for the last 6 years.  I recently finished my residency in Family Medicine and am now working as a Family Practice physician at Cornerstone Medical Group in Wheaton.  I’m very interested in the mind, body, spirit connection and the relationship of spirituality and medicine.  In 2005, I earned a MA in health ministries from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago to enable me to further pursue this interest.  In my “free” time I enjoy spending time with my family, working out, watching football, and cheering on my Fighting Illini!

 

Ben BlobaumBen Blobaum…drums

I like a lot of things, obviously music is one of them, but mostly I like grabbing a cup of coffee and talking with people one-on-one.  In fact, I’d love to talk with you!

I will strengthen you.  I will help you.  I will uphold you with my victorious right hand. ~God

 

Rob PankninRob Panknin…lead guitar, bass, keys, accordion

Grew up in a family of Musicians, dad was an accordion teacher.  Started lessons after the first day of first grade, on accordion.  Upon starting high school took trumpet in band class.  By junior year rebelled and started in rock bands.  First keyboard, soon guitar and eventually bass guitar. Also started singing in the choir at the family church and continued through high school and at various points throughout my life.  Less then a decade ago started playing in a contemporary setting at an other local church and found a ministry calling me.  Now am so fortunate to be with a church where the service and the music have such a spiritually positive impact in my life.

 

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Dylan Pavlisin…bass, guitar

I am from Southern California. I am currently a student at Concordia University Chicago. I play on the soccer team there and am majoring in Communications with a minor in Psychology. I have been playing bass since the 6th grade. I am a huge sports fan. My favorite teams are the Anaheim Ducks, Chelsea F.C., the St. Louis Rams, and the LA Lakers. Some of my major musical influences are Rage Against the Machine, Modest Mouse, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Johnny Cash, Grouplove, The White Stripes, Hillsong United, and Nirvana.

 

michaelkramerMichael Kramer…drums

Historic Preservation/Building Facade Specialist/Project Manager

I did most of my growing up in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. I began playing drums in the Marquis Drum and Bugle Corps around the age of 10. I’ve played in wedding bands, a few basement/garage groups and the occasional solo performance at home when no one else is around. Playing music with others quickly became a passion of mine. That passion is as strong in me today as it ever was. There are times when I’m playing that are transcendent. Not all the time of course, but when it happens my connection to God and the people around me is vivid. Playing music at Redeemer Church is a blessing. There are so many talented people performing with a deep connection to their faith at the church. It’s inspiring to say the least.As far as players who influence my style the most, the first three that pop into my head are Stuart Copland (The Police), Omar Hakim (everyone under the sun), and Ringo. My Pandora station plays everything from Bill Monroe to Joan Armatrading, Neal Young to Tame Impalla, and John Coltrane to Bill Withers.

Rob-Walton NEW bio picRob Walton…trumpet

I started on trumpet when I was 11, and later minored in music in college. Now I enjoy adding the brass to Sundays at Redeemer! I’ve also played with 4 different amateur concert bands–most recently with the Triton Community Band. Other hobbies of mine include landscaping and gardening, team trivia nights, playing basketball, and taking in all Chicago has to offer. I love spending time with my wife, family, and friends.  You can usually find me at a sporting event, most often watching the Blackhawks in the winter and my White Sox in the summer.

Price Band PhotoEvan Price…bass

I slappa da bayess!*

*Disclaimer: Evan Price does not know how to play slap bass.

 

 

100_0932Beth Osborn…vocals

I am a traveler. I have been to all 7 continents and visited 31 countries (and counting). My husband Kevin and I love to go anywhere from Antarctica to the Indiana Dunes. When I am in this time zone I work as an attorney. Whether it is folk, Christian rock, show tunes, traditional hymns or rock/pop from any decade from the 40’s to the 80’s, I have a song lyric for every occasion. After many years of singing them at work, at home and to the dog, I decided I had better find a slightly more appropriate outlet for all of this music. I started singing with the Encounter Band in 2014.

2015-09-26 18.07.12Mike Anzalotti…guitar
I’ve had a passion for music since I was a toddler listening to my parent’s 8 track cassettes of Simon and Garfunkel. I began playing piano as a child, then violin, and then clarinet. As an adult, I finally picked up a guitar and it’s been my musical hobby for the last 20 years.
Since becoming actively involved in church about 7 years ago, I have never felt a stronger connection to God and my Christian community than while playing with the worship band!