The Asheville Jazz Orchestra was founded in 2005. Dedicated to preserving and advancing the big band jazz tradition, the AJO can be heard throughout western North Carolina performing swing dances, on stage at clubs, and in formal concert settings. The AJO's repertoire ranges from the dance classics of the Swing Era through original charts by area composers.
The AJO is a proud partner of the Asheville Jazz Council, a 501c3 committed to jazz education, performance, and composition. Through their work with the Asheville Jazz Council, the AJO has performed at many educational music festivals, including the City of the Arts Jazz Festival, Patton High School Jazz Festival, Western Carolina University Trumpet Festival.
Since its founding the Asheville Jazz Orchestra has been directed by Dr. David Wilken. In addition to directing the AJO, he also plays trombone and also composes much of their material. He can also be heard playing traditional New Orleans jazz with the Low-Down Sires and conducting the Land of the Sky Symphonic Band.