A BRIEF BIOGRAPHY
John D. Upchurch, D.M.
After graduation from Brown High School John enrolled at Stetson University as a Music Education Major with a concentration in tuba. During the summer after his freshman year, he studied trombone with Bill Hill. When he returned to Stetson in the fall, there was an abundance of tuba players and a shortage of trombonists. This made it possible for John to change concentrations to trombone. This was just the first of many career direction changes that would follow.
His education continued at Indiana University, with a Masters Degree in Trombone Performance, and the Doctor of Music Degree with concentrations in both trombone and tuba. His major teachers were Thomas Beversdorf and Bill Bell. In the middle of these two degrees, he taught at Northeast Louisiana University for three years. After completion of the Doctorate, he moved to Potsdam, New York, as the low brass instructor, teaching trombone, euphonium and tuba, and playing trombone with the Potsdam Brass Quintet.
John spent seven years at Potsdam before returning south to assume the position of Chair of Fine Arts at Brevard College, where he was brass instructor and director of the band and jazz ensemble.
After Brevard College, he assumed the position of Chair of Fine Arts at Brenau University, where he taught a variety of music courses and headed the Arts Management Program. He later served as Dean of Admissions and Vice-President for Enrichment Programs at Brenau University, as-well-as Director of a highly successful Gifted and Talented Program called FIRESPARK.
Thanks in part to events at Potsdam, John learned to repair trombone slides and did so for friends and students for many years. In 2000, John started a business called The Slide Dr. What started out using Gail's laundry room as a shop, was so successful that John retired form Brenau University to be able to devote his time and energy to the business. Little did he know that this enterprise would become an international success, with thousands of customers from all over the world. You can check out the business at www.slidedr.com.
He is married to Gail Moseley (Decatur High 1957), has two daughters, Elizabeth Sioma, married to Lawrence Sioma, grandaughter Helen (age 7), and Catherine Berrigan, married to Timothy Berrigan, granddaughter Claire (age 13) and grandson Joseph John (age 9)