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Band Staff:

Argyle High School:
Jason Bird, Director of Bands
Evan Fletcher, Associate Director of Bands
Matthew Quinlan
, Percussion director
Erica King, Colorguard director

Argyle Middle School:

Bojan Gutic, Head band director
Alyssa Kunkel, Assistant band director
Robert Houpe, Assistant Percussion director
Erica King, Colorguard director

Argyle 6th Grade Center:

Marlie Cote, Head band director
James McNair
, Assistant band director

Argyle High School:

Jason Bird

Jason Bird is currently in his 23rd year of teaching and sixth year as the Director of Bands at Argyle High School. Under his direction, the Argyle High School band earned the silver medal at the 2018 UIL State Marching Contest and continued the streak of earning a sweepstakes at the UIL Concert and Sightreading competition.

Prior to Argyle High School, Mr. Bird was the director of bands at Richland High School in Birdville ISD. During his tenure, the concert ensembles have been awarded consistent Superior Ratings at the UIL Concert and Sightreading Contests. The Richland High School Honors Band was named a finalist in 2014, 2016, and 2017 for the TMEA Honor Band Competition, and in 2014, the Honors Band was a National Wind Band Honors Winner. The marching ensemble has been awarded consistent Superior Ratings at UIL Marching Contests with advancements to UIL State Marching Contest in 2006, 2008, 2012, and 2017. Additionally, the marching ensemble was a consistent finalist at BOA Regional and Super Regional events across the country. In 2011, Mr. Bird collaborated with the Haltom High School and Birdville High School Bands to perform in the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California.

A native of Fort Worth, TX, Mr. Bird attended the University of Houston Moores School of Music and received his Bachelors in Music Education. While attending the University of Houston, Mr. Bird was a member of the prestigious Wind Ensemble and the Catalyst Saxophone Quartet. The Catalyst Saxophone Quartet was named the Wind Division Champion in 1997 for the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, the Coleman Chamber Music Competition, and the Carmel Chamber Music Competition.

Mr. Bird is an active adjudicator and clinician for concert and marching bands. He is a member of Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, Texas Music Adjudicators Association, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and Phi Beta Mu.

Email Mr. Bird


Evan Fletcher

Evan Fletcher is in his twelfth year in Argyle ISD where he started as an Assistant Director at Argyle Middle School in 2012. Mr. Fletcher is currently the Associate Director at Argyle High School. His primary teaching responsibilities include the High School Marching Band, Symphonic Winds, Symphonic Band. Mr. Fletcher also assists with the beginner trumpet class at Argyle 6th Grade Center, and the performing ensembles at Argyle Middle School, where he was the Director of Bands for eight years.

Mr. Fletcher is a proud graduate of Texas Lutheran University in Seguin where he studied Music Education with Prof. Beth Bronk and Prof. Carol Chambers. In 2010, Mr. Fletcher was awarded the Malcolm Helm Memorial Scholarship by the Texas Bandmasters Association and was selected to Who’s Who Among Students In American Universities and Colleges. He was a marching member of Crossmen Drum and Bugle Corps where, after he aged out, he volunteered in various capacities on tour. 

In 2015, Mr. Fletcher earned his Master of Music Degree in Music Education from Texas State University where he studied Music Education with Dr. Mary Ellen Cavitt and Dr. Amy Simmons. During his entire career in Argyle ISD, Mr. Fletcher has been involved with the Argyle High School Marching band, receiving second place in 2016, 2018, and first place 2012, 2014, 2020, and 2021

Concert bands under the direction of Mr. Fletcher have consistently received UIL Sweepstakes Awards and many Best in Class designations. His bands have advanced to the Area level of the TMEA Honor Band selection process and have been named State Winners of the ATSSB Outstanding Performance Series in 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021,and 2022. The Argyle Middle School Honor Winds were named National Winners in the Mark of Excellence recording project in in 2018, 2021, and 2022 and Commended Winners in 2017, and 2019. In 2018, the Argyle Middle School Honor Winds were invited to perform at the Music For All National Festival in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Mr. Fletcher’s professional affiliations include, the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, and Texas Music Adjudicators Association. When not traveling to random international destinations, Mr. Fletcher spends most of his time with friends, family, and pups Biscuit and Bandit.

Email Mr. Fletcher

Matt Quinlan

Mr. Matt Quinlan has been involved in music education for over 30 years. Matt earned a Bachelor of Music Degree from low State University and a Master of Music from The University of North Texas with Ethnomusicology as his related field. He participated in the Leigh Howard Stevens Marimba Seminar and holds a Texas All Level Music Education Certificate.

Matt taught at Clear Lake, Mansfield and spent twelve years at Flower Mound HS building a nationally recognized program. With his guidance students earned five Grammy Signature School Gold awards and played at the Midwest Convention and Clinic four times. He led the percussionists to win the Percussive Arts Society Marching Division Championship for consecutive years 2006/2007 and were awarded the Fred Sanford trophy. His workshop, Percussion Gone Global, has been seen by over 80,000 students nationally.

Email Mr. Quinlan

Argyle Middle School:

Bojan Gutic

Bojan Gutic (Boy-en Goo-Tick) is in his 10th year of teaching at Argyle Middle School and his second year as the head middle school band director. His teaching responsibilities include Honor Winds, Concert Band Woodwinds, and accelerated band classes as well as assisting with the Symphonic Band, concert band brass, and Jazz Band. During the fall, Mr. Gutic also assists with the marching band at Argyle High School.

In 2023, the Argyle Middle School Honor winds, under Mr. Gutic's direction, advanced to the finals round of the TMEA Honor Band process for the first time since 2005 and placed 10th overall. In 2021, the Argyle Middle School Symphonic Band under the direction of Mr. Gutic was the first non-varsity band in the history of the ATSSB Outstanding Performance Series contest to have a recording selected as a winner and published. They were also a winner of the Citation of Excellence the same year, marking them as one of the top non-varsity bands in the state.

Bands under the direction of Mr. Gutic have consistently received UIL Sweepstakes Awards and advanced to the area and state levels of the ATSSB Outstanding Performance Series competition. The Argyle Middle School Symphonic Band has been named both a citation winner and commended winner by the Foundation for Music Education under Mr. Gutic’s direction and under Mr. Gutic's direction, the Argyle Middle School Honor Winds won several competitions in the DFW area.

Mr. Gutic earned his Master’s Degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX, studying with Dr. Sarah Allen, Frank Troyka, and Lynne Jackson. Prior to that, he earned a Bachelor’s degree of Music Education from Texas Christian University, where he graduated Cum Laude while studying clarinet with Gary Whitman. While at TCU, Mr. Gutic performed in the TCU Wind Symphony under the direction of Bobby Francis, the TCU Symphonic Band and Marching band under the direction of Brian Youngblood, and the TCU Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble under the direction of Richard Murrow.

Mr. Gutic's professional affiliations include the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, Kappa Kappa Psi, and the International Clarinet Association. In his free time, Mr. Gutic enjoys playing video games and hanging out with his friends. Mr. Gutic lives in Northlake with his puppy, Boba Fett.

Email Mr. Gutic

Alyssa Kunkel

Alyssa Kunkel is in her first year in Argyle ISD as the Assistant Band Director at Argyle Middle School and in her third year of teaching. Ms. Kunkel’s teaching responsibilities will include the Symphonic Band, Concert Band Brass, and our first ever AMS Jazz Band! Ms. Kunkel will also assist with Honor Winds and Concert Band Woodwinds.

Ms. Kunkel started her band journey in North Richland Hills, Texas, at Richland High School. There, she studied under Jason Bird, Mike Pickrell, and Scott Dupre. Ms. Kunkel holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Stephen F. Austin State University (“Axe’ Em Jacks”), where she studied and played trumpet under Dr. David Campo, Dr. Tamey Angelly, Dr. Chris Kaatz, and Dr. Jake Walburn.  

Ms. Kunkel has previously worked in Garland ISD and Arlington ISD at the high school level. Her professional affiliations include the Texas Music Educators Association and Tau Beta Sigma. She currently lives in Watauga with her boyfriend, Matt, and her two cats Milo and Princess Mia.

Email Ms. Kunkel
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Robert houpe


Mr. Houpe will be serving as the assistant percussion coordinator for Argyle ISD. Mr. Houpe is in his 13th year of teaching and his 3rd year as the Assistant Percussion Director for Argyle ISD where he works with all percussion students in the Argyle Band Program grades 6-12. He has previously been percussion director at Wylie East High School, and prior to that was a full-time percussion specialist teacher in Frisco ISD focusing on 6th-8th grade percussion at Fowler and Scoggins middle schools. Mr. Houpe has been a private lesson teacher for Argyle ISD, Coppell ISD, Frisco ISD, and Lewisville ISD.

Mr. Houpe received his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from UNT, graduating as a distinguished honors scholar, and holds a Master’s Degree in Percussion Performance from Northern Illinois University. He has studied a wide variety of percussion instruments and styles with teachers including Christopher Deane, Paul Rennick, Dr. Robert Schietroma, Robert Chappell, and Dr. Greg Beyer. He has experience in all areas of percussion performance and teaching.

Mr. Houpe was a member of the Champion UNT Indoor Drumline in 2002 and 2005. He was a member of the Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps in 2003 and 2004. Mr. Houpe was the Second Place Winner in the 2006 PAS Composition Contest and a featured performer in “John Cage’s Music Circus 2007” at the Chicago Cultural Center. In 2008 Mr. Houpe received the Thomas Siwe PASIC Scholarship and the Howard Johnston Award for Graduate Student Travel, a grant enabling him to travel to San Jose, Costa Rica to perform with NIU and present a master class at the International Festival of Percussion Ensembles.

In 2013 Mr. Houpe led the percussion section of the Fowler Symphony Honor Orchestra performing at TMEA. While at Wylie East High School, Mr. Houpe prepared students for multiple national festival performances including National Concert Band Festival Music for All Indianapolis and Western International Band Clinic in Seattle. In 2019, the Wylie East Band was a UIL State Finals Marching Band competitor.

Mr. Houpe lives in the Dallas area with his wife Katie and two awesome powerful daughters, Margaret and Maeve. 

Email Mr. Houpe

ARGYLE 6th Grade Center:

Marlie Cote

Marlie Cote (Co-Tee) is in her second year in Argyle ISD and in her first year as the head director at the Argyle Sixth Grade Center! Her teaching responsibilities will include all of the beginner woodwind classes. Under Mrs. Cote’s direction, the Argyle Middle School Symphonic Band earned consistent sweepstakes awards at every competition they entered and won a “Best in Class” award at the Director’s Choice competition at the Eisemann Symphony Center.

Mrs. Cote is a native Texan who began her band journey in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area at L.D. Bell High School in Hurst. During her time at Bell, she learned from master teachers, Joe and CathyGrzybowski; she also played flute/piccolo and served as drum major. Mrs. Cote holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Stephen F. Austin State University, where she studied under Fred J. Allen, Helen Blackburn, and Dr. Kevin Sedatole. "Axe 'em Jacks!"

Mrs. Cote began her career teaching middle school band and has worked in Lewisville ISD, Mansfield ISD, and Coppell ISD. Mrs. Cote is honored to have worked with esteemed band directors such as Jolette Wine, Steve Seibert, Kathy Johnson, Mike Brown, Chris Meredith, Rusty Gray, and Bojan Gutic. During her ten years teaching middle school, her bands earned UIL “sweepstakes” awards as well as “superior” awards at many band festivals and contests. Mrs. Cote also spent nine years as a private flute instructor and has seven years’ experience teaching elementary school music, most recently as an elementary music teacher in Lewisville ISD, where she earned “Teacher of the Year” in 2018.

Mrs. Cote is a member of Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, and The Texas Flute Society.

Mrs. Cote resides in Flower Mound with her husband Russell, who is Director of Bands at McKamy MS. They have two sons; Braden, who is a senior at Flower Mound HS, and Ian, who lives in St. George, Utah. In her free time, she enjoys attending live performances, performing in flute choirs, attending her son’s events, and spending time with family and friends. Email Mrs. Cote

James McNair

James McNair’s is in his 14th year with Argyle Band Staff and his 26th year as a music educator. Mr. McNair teaches 6th grade beginner brass classes and assists with the Argyle High School Marching Band and the Middle School Varsity and Non-Varsity Bands. 

Mr. McNair’s experience as a musician and music educator over the past 30 years is as vast as it is varied ranging from military musician to middle school band director to elementary music teacher to private lesson teacher to college professor. Mr. McNair served as Assistant Professor of Music, Associate Director of Bands and Coordinator of Instrumental Music Education at Texas Christian University from 2005-2008. Previous to this appointment at TCU, Mr. McNair taught for ten years in some of the country’s finest band programs including Lake Highlands High School, The Colony High School and Cross Timbers Middle School. Mr. McNair is an active clinician, consultant, and adjudicator throughout the state and has been a clinician for the Texas Music Educators Convention and Texas Bandmasters Conventions in San Antonio. 

Mr. McNair is a former member of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band in Washington, D.C. where he performed regularly at the White House for the President of the United States, on many Marine Band recordings, and on national tours. Mr. McNair is also in high demand as one of the most versatile freelance trombonists in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. He performs regularly with the East Texas Symphony Orchestra, the Lewisville Lake Symphony Orchestra, the Plano Symphony Orchestra, the Garland/Las Colinas Symphony Orchestra, the Dallas Opera, the Dallas Winds, and Imperial Brass. As a soloist, he has performed with the Dallas Winds, twice at the prestigious Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, and once at TMEA. Mr. McNair is a two-time winner of the Eastern Trombone Workshop National Classical Solo Competition in Washington, D.C.

Mr. McNair has maintained a private trombone studio throughout his career and has had multiple students make various All-State groups at TMEA. Students of Mr. McNair have been accepted to Texas A&M University-Commerce, SMU, Baylor, Oklahoma State, Indiana University, the Eastman School of Music, and the Manhattan School of Music. Mr. McNair was recognized at the 2016 TCU Trombone Summit and presented the “Unsung Hero Award” for his contributions to the trombone community through teaching and performance. Also in 2016, he was named Teacher of the Year for Argyle Intermediate School.

Mr. McNair earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from East Texas State University where his primary teachers were Dr. Neill Humfeld, Jim Clark, and Ed Jones. He also earned a Master of Music in trombone performance from Texas A&M University-Commerce.

Email Mr. McNair


Erica King

Erica King has been teaching and performing in the Color Guard world for 10 years. She grew up in Frisco, Texas and found her passion for the activity once she began to attend Frisco High School. After graduating in 2013, Ms. King attended the University of North Texas where she graduated with a Bachelor's in Psychology. She will also be going back for her second degree in rehabilitative studies this Spring! While attending school, she began her teaching career.

She became a technician for multiple groups in the area, with her most recent being Southlake Carroll High School and Coppell High School. She was director of the McKinney North High School Color Guard from 2019 - 2022, where she was able to lead them to an undefeated 2022 season within the local NCTA circuit!

Ms. King started her professional performance career with CGT in 2015. She performed at several WGI regionals with the organization and was a two-time WGI World Championship finalist. Her last year with CGT was 2017 where she was a captain. After her time there, she stepped onto the World Class floor with Black Gold Winterguard and was a two time WGI World Championship finalist as well. She spun for the organization in 2018 and 2020. She also had the pleasure of being on staff for Black Gold in 2019.

Ms. King is so excited to start her journey with the Argyle Color Guard and is looking forward to an amazing year!

Email Ms. King. 
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Honorary Directors:
The Argyle Band staff would like to thank their wonderful pets!
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