NICHOLAS PAYTON QUINTET
Rose & Alfred Miniaci Performing Arts Center
Tickets: 877.311.SHOW (Toll-free) or purchase online HERE.
Since 1994, when Nicholas Payton made his recording debut as a leader with From This Moment, the trumpeter has been lauded as a significant, top-tier voice in jazz. Even though he started out as a “young lion,” heralded as one of the new-generation guardians of the hard bop flame, Mr Payton consistently committed himself to discovering his voice outside of the strict confines of that rearview mirror approach to the music. It was early on that curve that he performed for South Florida JAZZ in 1998 and again in 2001, dazzling the audiences with his pure tone and soul. With his huge, burnished tone and full command of trumpet history from Satchmo through Freddie Hubbard, Mr Payton has firmly established himself as one of the premier jazz artists of our time.
Born into a musical family and mentored by Ellis Marsalis at the University of New Orleans, Mr Payton was well prepared to leap into the jazz fray when he emerged on the New York scene in the 1990s. He impressed Wynton Marsalis and was a regular in the early years of programming at Lincoln Center. Payton put his own spin on New Orleans-associated music. Over the next several years, Payton continued to hone his craft working with Hank Jones, Elvin Jones, and Ray Brown, and collected a Grammy with Doc Cheatham. In 2003 he boldly moved beyond the straight-ahead, shocking the jazz world with his adventurous and exhilarating plugged-in band infused with elements of hip-hop, electronica, and effects-driven trumpeting.
This foray was transitory as he struggled with his role as torchbearer for the mainstream, fairly predictable, and somewhat stale jazz, while striving to carry on the experimentations of Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Weather Report; even incorporating elements of R&B and soul. Mr Payton says he is, “most solidly in a place where I’m coming to terms with who I am. I’ve weeded out those things that don’t feel right for me. I’m not out to try to impress and I’m not worried that what I play is going to upset some people. I want to write and play music that speaks for me and means something to me, that I feel passionate about.” He has found peace.
Grooves are central to his newest project. Mr Payton states, “I want that dance element that was there at the roots of jazz. I feel a lot of jazz has gotten away from that legacy.” It is not a common sentiment, but not an invalid one, either.
Joining Nicholas Payton in the band the highly is the rapidly rising star, piano phenom (and computer scientist) Lawrence Fields, a product of Washington University and Berklee College of Music. Bassist Ben Williams was the 2009 winner of the prestigious Thelonious Monk Institute competition, the most prestigious award for aspiring jazz musicians. The youngest member of the band is drummer Corey Fonville, who started playing at age two, and was the subject of media features by eight! His future is very bright, indeed. jazz percussionist Daniel Sadownick is the versatile veteran of the rhthym section having played with Michael Brecker, Spyro Gyra, Christian McBride, Steely Dan, and even the Screaming Headless Torsos. He gives the band a very special groove.
“Nicholas Payton is well on his way to being the most important trumpeter of his generation.”
Funding for South Florida JAZZ is provided in part by a grant from the Broward County Board of County