Sean Jones Dizzy Spellz – Jazz St. Louis
Artists Sean Jones (trumpeter/musical director) and Brinae Ali (choreographer/tap dancer/vocalist) have teamed up to create a piece that fuses jazz, tap, Hip Hop, and Bebop to articulate the social vernacular language of the African American experience. Dizzy Spellz offers an Afro-futuristic lens into a deeper look at the intersecting cultural and spiritual dilemmas within the African Diaspora through the music of Dizzy Gillespie. From his coming of age through the racial and social dynamics in the Deep South, creating and curating the bebop movement in New York, to his spiritual journey to Africa and his delve into Afro Cuban music and the Baha’i faith, Dizzy was very much ahead of his time.
Music and spirituality have always been fully intertwined in the artistic vision of trumpeter, bandleader, 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 at the age of 10. Sean is a musical chameleon and is comfortable in any musical setting no matter what the role or the genre. He is equally adept in being a member of an ensemble as he is at being a bandleader. Sean turned a 6-month stint with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra into an offer from Wynton Marsalis for a permanent position as lead trumpeter, a post he held from 2004 until 2010. In 2015 Jones was tapped to become a member of the SFJAZZ Collective. During this time, Sean has managed to keep a core group of talented musicians together under his leadership forming the foundation for his groups that have produced and released eight recordings on the Mack Avenue Records, the latest is his 2017 release Sean Jones: Live from the Jazz Bistro.
Sean has been prominently featured with a number of artists, recording and/or performing with many major figures in jazz, including Illinois Jacquet, Jimmy Heath, Frank Foster, Nancy Wilson, Dianne Reeves, Gerald Wilson and Marcus Miller. Sean was selected by Miller, Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter for their Tribute to Miles tour in 2011. He has also performed with the Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Youngstown Symphony Orchestras as well as Soulful Symphony in Baltimore and in a chamber group at the Salt Bay Chamber Festival. Sean is also an internationally recognized educator. He was named the Richard and Elizabeth Case Chair of Jazz at John Hopkins University’s Peabody Institute in Baltimore. Before coming to Peabody, Sean served as the Chair of the Brass Department at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Additionally, he serves as Artistic Director of Carnegie Hall’s NYO Jazz.