Des Plaines River Songs Music Publishing

Des Plaines River Songs Music Publishing


DES PLAINES RIVER SONGS is the music publishing division of WATZ Enterprises*. Des Plaines River Songs Music Publishers was Established in 1974 at 1648 River Street, Des Plaines, IL 60016, it replaced Deer Grove Music Publishers, 128 Wool Street, Barrington, IL 60010. Deer Grove Music on Wool Street was the origin of the first copyrighted music composition, "Prelude: Uranus" authored by Jeffree Watz and registered at the Library Of Congress # EP 341926.

"128 Wool Street" << UPDATED  2020 This is now a Moretti's Pizza, << There is now a restaurant / tavern at 128 Wool Street in Barrington bearing that name. Stop by this historic building (circa 1890) by the Barrington train station parking lot. The Dining room is beautiful, carefully restored windows create the perfect dining atmosphere. The tavern, with its 2 story vintage plated ceiling, specializes in locally brewed craft beers, some of which are outstanding. ( I am receiving NO compensation for this endorsement.) Ask the bartender about when the infamous composer Jeffree Watz lived there.

"1648 River Street" in Des Plaines (circa 1900) was torn down after a family of raccoons ate through the attic and fell through the bathroom ceiling while Johnny was contemplating our next project; startled by the sudden appearance of the raccoons, J.C. decided to put our music project on hold and move out and we relocated onto Greenwood Street. That house across from Golf Mill Shopping Center has also been torn down.

"322 E North Avenue" became the home for the Watz mansion for 20 years. It had a small recording studio and a new baby grand piano. As of September 2018 we found a new waterfront building. Currently the music publishing is done at DES PLAINES RIVER SONGS, 114 Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60013-1116. New releases in 2020 will be on Akashic Records*.  Contact

Photos of White Noise Street Ensemble bassist Gary Berman is not available at this time and in no way diminishes his contribution to these works. (Photo of Dave Tongay posted March 2014).  J. C. Thompson, aka Johnny Watz, was the engine behind this music machinery. Legend has it that J.C.'s father was Tommy Thompson of the CBS Orchestra in New York, and brought home Buddy Rich to teach little Johnny a thing or two about playing the drums. As an adult, J.C. was building custom drums at Slingerland Drum Company when in walked Phil Ehart of Kansas, who then ordered a custom built drum set from John. Ehart took him on a long tour of the world. (Update: J.C. retired from touring with Kansas after 25 years on the road. Congrats, Johnny!) All that, and J.C. still had the time to help forge this work of audio art, over five CD's worth of music from live and studio recordings, from pop songs to serious 20th Century long-hair compositions and creative jazz-fusion improvisation. Thank you John C. Thompson for your brilliant percussionist skills, and for finding the time between touring with Kansas and returning home to make great music with your old friends.


Jeff Watz is a member of ASCAP American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers.

*Jeff "Watz"  Wehrmeister is sole proprietor of Worm A To Z Enterprises and Des Plaines River Songs Music Publishers, is a long time member of ASCAP, and has published and authored all the content including music, sometimes under the pseudonym Jeffree Watz. Jeff also owned Cellar Records in the 1980's. As of January 1, 2020, Jeff is also sole proprieter of Akashik Records®.                                   ¶ ¿ ¨ ȃ π ℗ ♪ ♫ .§ © ® ¶ ¿ ¨ ȃ π ℗ ♪ ♫  

Most of the photos are by Michael Lester, photographer. Photos of The Needles by Nadeen Carroll.

Jeff also wrote, directed and edited the video "Penguins In Space _ The Trilogy", and Episodes Two & 3 were co-written by Michael Lester. Episodes 3 & 4 are being re-edited for internet release. Penguins In Space is also on Jeff Watz' YouTube channel.

A huge amount of thanks to the folks at who maintain this website.