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April 30th, 2016 – Ed Carney Memorial Jazz Concert featuring the Chris Smith Quartet January 19, 2016

Posted by eng112f09 in Jazz, Upcoming concerts.

Join us for a night of hot jazz as Chris Smith and his quartet bring us the music of trombone legend JJ Johnsons and more! The concert will begin at 7:30 pm on Saturday, April 30th at Chapel Lane Presbyterian Church, 5501 Jefferson Ave.

The night before, Chris and his band will be hosting a clinic for students at 4:30pm, Friday the 29th at Chapel Lane. Come and and learn from the masters! Food will be provided with a Jam Session afterwards. Adult students welcome also!

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Jazz and the trombone have been together since the beginning. While some instruments have gone through periods of popularity or obscurity, trombonists have always been prominent in the history of America’s music, and at one time led the most popular bands in the country. This concert will provide a living, breathing history of jazz trombone through the dynamic performance of trombonist Chris Smith and his group of jazz masters. From the earliest pioneers of jazz, to legends of the classic jazz era, to today’s top trombonists, Smith knows them all– and with the help of his friends will bring them to life. For this concert Chris Smith has been commissioned to write a jazz piece for a large choir of student trombonists, who will join the quartet for the finale number of the evening.

Joining Chris Smith for this concert will be three of his long-time musical friends, all of whom are among the most sought-after and honored jazz musicians in the Midwest.

Pianist, arranger and educator Ellen Rowe has been described as “that rare ‘triple threat’ of pianist, composer-arranger, and teacher” (Arizona Daily Star). She has written orchestral features for Marian McPartland and Gene Bertoncini as well as big band features for Red Mitchell and Bob Brookmeyer. Ms. Rowe is currently on the faculty of the University of Michigan School of Music, where she is Associate Professor of Jazz Piano, Chair of the Department of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation, and directs the University of Michigan Jazz Ensemble.

Paul Keller is informally known as “The House Bass Player for the State of Michigan” as each year, he logs many miles traveling all around the state to perform at various music venues. In Ann Arbor, he leads the 15-piece Paul Keller Orchestra, which plays original, obscure and classic big band material from all periods of jazz history. Under Paul’s expert leadership, the PKO (formerly known as the Bird of Paradise Orchestra) has garnered critical and popular acclaim, accepting Washtenaw Council for the Arts “Annie Awards” and Detroit Music Awards for excellence in performing arts. He also leads various small groups under his own name. Touring nationally and internationally, he has anchored the groups of Diana Krall and Russell Malone, among many, many others.

Drummer Sean Dobbins got his start as sought-after Detroit area jazz sideman at a young age, when he would regularly play with Blue Note artist Louis Smith. As Dobbin’s career progressed, he found himself the recipient of many awards and accolades including the “Woody Herman Jazz Award,” an award for outstanding musicianship, as well as the Louis Armstrong Scholarship. Due to Sean’s great talent both as a player and an educator, he has been the focus of countless news articles, jazz radio programs, and documentaries.

Dobbins has amassed an impressive list of credits, having performed/toured/recorded with Johnny Bassett, Benny Golson, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Frank Morgan, Joey DeFrancesco, George Cables, James “Blood” Ulmer, Marcus Belgrave, Larry Willis, Rodney Whitaker, Claude Black, Johnny O’Neal, Paul Keller, Tad Weed, Kurt Krahnke, Jon Hendricks, David “Fathead” Newman, Donald Walden, Cyrus Chestnut, Barry Harris, David Baker, Randy Johnston, Marion Hayden, Mose Allison, and a host of other greats. Sean’s sound can best be described as hard-driving, solid rhythm with a refreshing melodic sensibility. Some of Sean’s influences include Art Blakey, Jeff Hamilton, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Ed Thigpen, Sonny Payne, as well as Detroit area greats Gerald Cleaver and the one and only Elvin Jones.



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