Iowa native Les Aldrich is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa, where he earned a degree in music education with a jazz specialization. While attending UNI, he studied as a Clarinet major with Jack Graham, as well as studying saxophone with Donald Wendt and Flute with Jeffrey Cohen. He has studied jazz arranging and composition with Jack Oatts, Rick Lawn, Bob Washut, and Wes Hensel.
As a performer on clarinet, saxophones, and keyboards, Les has played in a various types of musical groups from classical to rock and roll. He has performed with Dick Oatts, Clark Terry , Nick Brignola, Jim Oatts, Paul McKee, and the Des Moines Big Band. In addition to many compositions published by C. L. Barnhouse, Les has written music for the Iowa High School Music Association, and the Celebration Iowa Singers and Jazz Band (Formerly the Iowa State Fair Singers and Jazz Band).
Les began his career as a music educator in 1982 at Twin Cedars Community School in Bussey, Iowa. He has also taught Bellevue (Iowa) Community Schools, and the Coon Rapids-Bayard (Iowa) Community Schools. He is currently the director of middle school bands and head of jazz studies in the Oelwein Community Schools, Oelwein, Iowa. Les and his wife, Tammi live in Oelwein with their two sons, Tony and Andy.