Kris Berg & the Metroplexity Big Band
One of the top-selling jazz composer / arrangers in the world, Kris Berg has been enhancing the programs and recordings of jazz ensembles from professionals to middle schools for years. A composer / arranger for Belwin Jazz, a Division of Alfred Publishing, he has written charts for many artists, including Kurt Elling, Chris Vadala, Wayne Bergeron, and Delfeayo Marsalis, honors bands, colleges, and public school programs across the country. His popular series of “chicken” funk tunes have sold tens of thousands of charts. Kris is the author of the popular bass method book, BASS LINES IN MINUTES, and also has big band charts published with Warner Brothers Music, Doug Beach Music, Bakers Jazz and More, Walrus Music, and Kris Berg Jazz.
Kris’ newest project as composer / band leader is available now. "Time Management" - The Metroplexity Big band, is the impressive follow-up to their popular and critically acclaimed CD, "This Time / Last Year". Featuring the best musicians north Texas has to offer, the CD also features special guests Phil Woods, Wayne Bergeron, Clay Jenkins, Denis DiBlasio, and Andy Timmons. Combining originals and original arrangements, "Time Management" displays nine smokin' hot charts for lovers of contemporary big band. Tunes include "Yesterdays", "Narnian Dance", and "The Chicken."
Kris has been the Director of Jazz Studies at Collin College near Dallas for 20 years. At Collin, he has taught jazz classes, directed ensembles and is the founder of both the Collin Jazz Fest and the Texas All-Star Jazz Camp. Kris earned his Master's and Bachelor's of Music in Jazz Studies at University of North Texas where he directed jazz ensembles and taught big band arranging.
An award winning bassist, Kris has appeared or recorded with the likes of Wayne Bergeron, Phil Woods, Jeff Clayton, Kurt Elling, Randy Brecker, Peter Erskine, Bob Mintzer, Delfeayo Marsalis, Bobby Shew, Jimmy Heath, Doc Severinsen, Clark Terry, John Fedchock, Gregg Bissonette, Chris Vadala, Kevin Mahogany, Marvin Stamm, Denis DiBlasio, Frank Mantooth, Matt Harris, Clay Jenkins, Kim Richmond, Tom “Bones” Malone and many others. Currently active as an artist / clinician for Yamaha Corporation of America, he has appeared at jazz festivals and camps throughout the United States and is also endorsed by Acoustic Image Amplifiers and Bag End Loudspeakers. Recently, Kris Berg & the Metroplexity Big Band were featured performers at the Jazz Education Network (JEN) conference. KrisBergJazz.com
NEW YORK VOICES
This critically acclaimed vocal group has refined their musical story to a high art. They are known for their close knit voicings, inspired arrangements and unparalleled vocal blend. Their chameleon-
like musicianship allows them to move seamlessly from setting to setting, be it orchestral/big band to the intimate trio lineup. With deep interests rooted in jazz, Brazilian, R & B, classical, and pop, their music mixes traditional sensibilities with more than a dash of the unexpected. They are first call from great arrangers and conductors like Don Sebesky, Michael Abene, Keith Lockhart, and Rob Fisher who all know and admire the complexity of what they do and want something out of the ordinary, something extraordinary. Like the great jazz vocal groups that have come before — Lambert, Hendricks and Ross, Singers Unlimited, and The Manhattan Transfer — they are firmly a part of that legacy and are dedicated to passing it on to generations to come.
NYV has traveled the globe with their elegant music, amazing audiences the world over with their impeccable voices and stunning arrangements. “Live, they’re just as impressive to witness,” says Mathew Lurrie of Time Out Chicago. “We dare say there may be no better way to understand the wit and wink of jazz harmony than via these Voices.”
Along with their extensive concert performances and recording schedules, NYV also works in the field of education, giving workshops and clinics to high school and college music students throughout the world. In 2009, they opened the New York Voices-Bowling Green State University Vocal Jazz Camp. It is a wildly successful venture that admits students from all over the world at different ages and stages in their musical lives. NYV have cultivated a philosophy of teaching over their storied career and have designed a roster of electives that students choose from while also participating in one of four jazz choirs directed by one of the New York Voices and the all camp piece directed by Greg Jasperse. It is a six-day summer intensive that is instructive while also being personal and nurture based.
Individually, the four members are involved in a variety of projects including solo performances and recordings, teaching, writing and arranging. To learn more about NYV or the individual members, please visit NewYorkVoices.com.
Terell Stafford and the Ben Markley Trio
Terell Stafford, acclaimed trumpet player based in New York, has been hailed as “one of the great players of our time, a fabulous trumpet player” by piano legend McCoy Tyner. Stafford is recognized as an incredibly gifted and versatile player, he combines a deep love of melody with his own brand of spirited and adventurous lyricism. Stafford’s exceptionally expressive and well defined musical talent allows him to dance in and around the rich trumpet tradition of his predecessors while making his own inroads.
Stafford first picked up the trumpet at age thirteen, initially studying classical music. While pursuing a music education degree at the University of Maryland, Stafford played with the school’s jazz band. In 1988, Stafford had the good fortune to meet and receive advice from Wynton Marsalis who suggested that he study with Dr. William Fielder at Rutgers University. Later, Marsalis gave Stafford the opportunities to perform in his group Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, and teach at Jazz at Lincoln Center and Juilliard. Marsalis supports Stafford’s current role as Managing and Artistic Director of the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia and continues to offer his guidance and support.
Since the mid-1990’s, Stafford has performed with groups such as Benny Golson’s Sextet, McCoy Tyner’s Sextet, Kenny Barron Quintet, Frank Wess Quintet, Jimmy Heath Quintet and Big Band, Jon Faddis Jazz Orchestra, Carnegie Hall Jazz Band and Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Alumni Band. Stafford can be heard performing on over 130 albums. Stafford with the Hamilton-Clayton Jazz Orchestra, performed on Diana Krall’s GRAMMY nominated From this Moment On (2006).
Stafford was a member of the GRAMMY nominated Bobby Watson’s Tailor Made Big Band for their album Tailor Made. Stafford is a member of the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and they were awarded a GRAMMY in 2009 for Best Large Ensemble, Live at the Village Vanguard.
Stafford is the Director of Jazz Studies and Chair of Instrumental Studies at Temple University, founder and band leader of the Terell Stafford Quintet, and Managing and Artistic Director of the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia (JOP). Stafford is renowned in the jazz world as an educator, performer and leader along with countless award nominations, accolades and associated acts.TerellStafford.com