ORRIN EVANS GROUP FEAT JD WALTER & SEAN JONES
”The clear-cut best pianist of his time...” is how Hot House Magazine” described Orrin Evans in 1998, praise which was echoed again in the summer of 2002. This remarkable talent was nurtured in a household filled with music due to the efforts of his mother, a classical singer who surrounded the youngster with everything from the melodies of Puccini to the pulsating rhythms of Basie and Ellington. He learned from what he heard which is still the case today when he acknowledges such musicians as Trudy Pitts, Tim Warfield, Kenny Barron, Ralph Peterson, Edgar Bateman, Mickey Roker and Bobby Durham as inspirational guides. His formal study was at Philadelphia's prestigious Settlement School of Music under Charles Pettaway.
The New York Times described the pianist as “...a poised artist with an impressive template of ideas at his command”, a quality undoubtedly recognized by the legendary saxophonist Bobby Watson who engaged Evans as piano chair for his band, a position he has held for six years. Orrin has recorded with Bobby on Live and Learn (Palmetto Records), Quite as it's Kept (Red Records) which features one of Orrin's original compositions “Looking in Your Eyes”. Bobby also recorded another of Orrin's compositions “Two Stepping with Dawn” on Bobby Watson & Curtis Lundy Project (Sound Hills Records). Orrin has been playing with the Charles Mingus Big Band for the past three years. He has also toured with such diverse talents as the evolutionary Wallace Roney, Stefon Harris, and Antonio Hart.
For Orrin Evans, however, the greatest joy is playing his own band which, at different times, has included such notables as the aforementioned Ralph Peterson, Sam Newsome, Ralph Bowen, Nasheet Waits, Reid Anderson, John Swana and Duane Eubanks. Besides touring and recording, Evans is also a teacher and musical commentator, having conducted workshops, clinics and master classes both in The United States and abroad. When not on the road, he teaches privately. The newest Orrin Evans adventures are; “Meant to Shine”, his latest cd on the Palmetto Records label, two projects on his own label, IMANI Records, one from the group SEED, and “Dejavu” by the Orrin Evans Trio, (both available online).
Orrin will be joined by JD Walter and Sean Jones.
JD Walter is a jazz singers singer - a purist and an innovator. His style has been compared to many vocal titans, but it is uniquely his own and he has become a singular phenomenon on the music scene. Respected and lauded by the great musicians of the contemporary circuit, JD has shared the stage with many legendary artists including: Dave Liebman, Billy Hart, Tom Harrell, Eddie Gomez, Bob Dorough, Edgar Bateman, Nicholas Payton, Jean-Michel Pilc, Bill Evans, Mark Murphy, Greg Hutchinson, Ari Hoenig, Randy Brecker, Tim Warfield, Jim Ridl, Orrin Evans, Seamus Blake, Igor Butman, Nasheet Waits, Craig Handy, Boris Kozlov, Robin Eubanks, Eric Revis, Billy Drummond, Christian McBride, Adam Nussbaum and Don Bradon. JD sang with the renowned "American Boy choir" and later attended the University of North Texas via a vocal jazz scholarship.
JD has currently recorded seven CD's. "Sirens in the C-House" , "Clear Day", "Dedicated to You", "2Bass, a Face and a Little Skin", "Live in Portugal", "Live at the 55Bar, and has just released his 7th, CD, "One Step Away". His releases have helped expand his listening audience from the shores of America to Europe, Russia and the Far East.
JD has been a featured artist at countless American jazz festivals and clubs, performed at numerous festivals in Europe, the Middle East, Central America and toured Russia over 60 times, performing in over 100 cities. He has performed numerous clinics for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, the Music Educators National Conference, taught at the prestigious Sebelius Conservatory in Helsinki Finland, Jazz Palau De Valencia in Spain, The Athenian conservatory and Ionian Universities in Greece, The University of North Texas, New Orleans University, The Moscow Music Consort and the Kazan Music Conservatory in Russia. He is a regular on the music scene in New York, having headlined at such venues as Lincoln Center, The Jazz Standard, The Blue Note, The Jazz Gallery, Joe's Pub, The Tribeca Performing Arts Center, Sweet Rhythm and Smoke, and the famed 55 Bar. He currently resides in New York City, teaches at The Aaron Copland School of Music, The New School, and The Prince Claus Conservatory in Groningen, Holland.
Music and spirituality have always been fully intertwined in the artistic vision of trumpeter, composer, educator and activist Sean Jones. Singing and performing as a child with the church choir in his hometown of Warren, Ohio, Sean switched from the drums to the trumpet upon his first exposure to Miles Davis at the age of 10. Twenty-five years later, he still cites Miles’ overall artistic vision and purity of sound as his greatest personal influence.
But it was another immortal visionary who had a most profound impact when Sean was a 19-year old student at Youngstown State University – the magnificent John Coltrane through his masterpiece, A Love Supreme – “All at once, everything just came together for me. My past, my present, my future. I knew the course I needed to pursue.” Already exhibiting a superb control of the instrument through his private studies with master trumpeter and educator Esotto Pellegrini and his intensive listening to his other primary influences, Woody Shaw Freddie Hubbard and Clifford Brown, the young trumpeter committed himself to artistic excellence the pursuit of transcendence.
Five years later, after receiving his Master’s Degree from Rutgers University, Sean had a 6-month stint with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. This marked the beginning of a relationship with Wynton Marsalis, whose personal work ethic and ability to break barriers had already made a significant impact on the emerging artist. Wynton offered Sean a permanent position as lead trumpeter and Jones remained there until 2010.
A highly respected and in-demand musician even while at Rutgers, Sean was prominently featured with a number of artists, recording and/or performing with many major figures, including Illinois Jacquet, Jimmy Heath, Frank Foster, Nancy Wilson, Dianne Reeves, Gerald Wilson and Marcus Miller. The relationship with Miller led to another highly impacting experience when Sean was selected by Miller, Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter for their Tribute to Miles tour in 2011.
The trust and support of those giants led Sean to a decision to focus on performing with his own ensembles. Already touring and performing regularly with his own groups while at Lincoln Center, Sean also began his longtime relationship with Mack Avenue Records, for whom he has just released his seventh recording: im.pro.vise = never before seen. He’s currently performing with the quartet on his latest CD, who have been working together since 2007 – with pianist Orrin Evans, bassist Luques Curtis and drummer Obed Calvaire. But Sean is also looking toward projects with new and larger ensembles, including orchestras. In addition, he’s planning on more forays into the world of Western classical music, while working on solidifying his pedagogy and increasing his lecturing and writing activities.
Heavily involved in education, Sean has recently joined the Berklee College of Music’s distinguished faculty as the Chair of the Brass Department. He has also taught at Duquesne University in his adopted hometown of Pittsburgh and at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, while regularly offering master classes and clinics all around the world. In addition, Sean also serves as Artistic Director of both the Pittsburgh and Cleveland Jazz Orchestras and is working toward organizing the various Jazz orchestras all over the country. Sean is current Artist-in-Residence at San Francisco Performances and is a member of The SF JAZZ Collective.
Clearly a passionately committed, heavily focused and deeply spiritual man, Sean relies upon his serious study of philosophy – especially that of 13th century theologian and mystic Meister Eckhardt; and Don Miguel Ruiz, whose vision is drawn from the ancient wisdom of the Toltec native people of Southern Mexico – to fuel the pursuit of his expansive and generous vision. Sean currently lives in Boston with his wife Stacey.
SHOWTIMES7:00pm & 9:00pm/ $30
WHERE600 North Broad St. Philadelphia, PA 19130
- CLOSED FOR A PRIVATE EVENT ~
BRIAN BETZ (T)
GERALD VEASLEY LIVE @SOUTH - CD RELEASE PARTY (T)
GERALD VEASLEY LIVE @SOUTH - CD RELEASE PARTY (T)