2015-16 MSU Federal Credit Union Jazz Artists in Residence

Stars align for the third consecutive year of the visiting jazz artist program.

2014-15 Jazz Artist in Residence, Christian McBride, jazz bass, takes the stage with MSU Jazz Orchestra I. Other jazz artists from that season included: Robin Eubanks, trombone, Vincent Bowens, saxophone, Tim Froncek, drums, and Peter Bernstein, guitar.
Brian Lynch, jazz trumpet
Jimmy Cobb, jazz drums
Kenny Barron, jazz piano
Tim Warfield, Jr., jazz saxophone

MSU College of Music welcomes a brilliant array of jazz performers to teach, mentor, and perform from October through March through the MSUFCU Jazz Artist in Residence program.

Made possible by a $1 million endowment from the MSU Federal Credit Union, the innovative residency program continues to attract high-level talent and serve as a model for jazz studies programs nationwide. The 2015-16 program features an expanded lineup that sizzles with legendary and critically acclaimed musicians from the jazz scene, including Brian Lynch, Jimmy Cobb, Kenny Barron, and Tim Warfield, Jr.

“The unparalleled gift from the MSU Federal Credit Union puts MSU on the map as a center of jazz education, innovation, and study,” says James Forger, dean of the MSU College of Music. “The Credit Union’s generosity and vision helps ensure that American Jazz will thrive and be a treasured, living art form for generations to come.”

Trumpeter Brian Lynch, the first of four scheduled artists, followed by Drummer Jimmy Cobb, Pianist Kenny Barron, and Saxophonist Tim Warfield, Jr. will heat up the winter and spring with separate, weeklong residencies. The star-studded lineup provides students and the community a rare opportunity to listen to and learn from legendary greats who have contributed to landmark recordings and been recognized as Jazz Masters by the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as from contemporary forces who are shaping the world of jazz. Artists will also visit high schools, art academies, and community colleges statewide, accompanied by MSU Jazz Orchestra I, the College's premier student jazz ensemble.

“Everywhere I go and everyone I meet asks how we are doing what we're doing,” says Director of Jazz Studies Rodney Whitaker. “The gift from the MSU Federal Credit Union makes it possible for us to bring in amazing talent and attract the best and the brightest students and faculty. It’s a gift that keeps on giving, and allows our program to model excellence.” 

The MSUFCU Jazz Artist in Residence program represents the largest-ever investment in the College's curriculum and provides one-on-one instruction, collaboration, and performance opportunities with some of the world’s best jazz musicians. In the first year of the program from 2013-14, the College welcomed guest artists Antonio Hart, saxophone; Jon Faddis, trumpet; and Jeff Hamilton, drums. In the second year, 2014-15, the College hosted an equally impressive lineup of Christian McBride, bass; Robin Eubanks, trombone; Peter Bernstein, guitar; and Michigan icons Vincent Bowens, saxophone; and Tim Froncek, drummer. The combined weeklong residencies of the eight artists included student workshops, concerts, events, and outreach to more than 13,500 students and adults in communities across Michigan.

“Arts and culture are key components of strong, vibrant communities where people want to live, work, and play,” says April Clobes, president and CEO of the MSUFCU. “This gift to the College of Music helps build that framework, and provides exceptional opportunities for students and our community to experience jazz—one of our nation's greatest artistic treasures.”

2015-2016 Lineup

Michigan State Federal Credit Union Jazz Artist in Residence Program

This year’s MSUFCU Jazz Artist in Residence program includes four jazz musicians. Artists will spend a week teaching and touring with the MSU Jazz Studies program, including stops and workshops at various Michigan schools. Campus and the community performances are also instrumental to the program. Artists and their residencies include:

Oct. 5 – 11, 2015
Brian Lynch
, jazz trumpet 
Trumpeter Brian Lynch is a vital force and legend within the hardcore, straight ahead, and Latin Jazz communities. 

Nov. 30 – Dec. 6, 2015
Jimmy Cobb
, jazz drums
Legendary jazz drummer Jimmy Cobb is the elder statesman of all the Miles Davis bands.

Feb. 8 – 14, 2016
Kenny Barron, jazz piano
Honored by The National Endowment for the Arts as a 2010 Jazz Master, Kenny Barron mesmerizes audiences with his elegant and infectious rhythms.

Feb. 28 – March 6, 2016 
Tim Warfield, Jr.
, jazz saxophone
Tim Warfield, Jr. began studying the saxophone at age 9 and placed third at the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition in 1991.

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