Bassist John Brown has moved from sought-after sideman to the sought-after front man and singular leader of his own multiplex of sizzle-saturated performance ensembles including the John Brown Trio (with Cyrus Chestnut and Adonis Rose), his acclaimed John Brown Quintet, John Brown’s 10-12 member “Little” Big Band and the grand big sound of the 18-22 piece John Brown Jazz Orchestra. Regardless of number of musicians or size of the stage, the overall result is the same – absolute and joyous spontaneity, palpable warmth, infectious showmanship, and most of all, peerless musical mastery.
With recent recordings gaining impressive airplay internationally, John Brown is the bass man who’s clearly found his beat. The new Rodrigo Dorfman film “One Night in Kernersville” about the recording of the John Brown Jazz Orchestra’s first CD, walked away with Best Short honors at the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in 2011.
Each John Brown ensemble offers a wide range of jazz performances and themed concerts. Specialized programs include “The Music of John Coltrane,” “The Music of Duke Ellington,” “The Music of Frank Sinatra,” “The Music of Miles Davis,” “A Night of Bebop” and “Pages from the Great American Songbook.” His commitment to education (he’s Director of Duke University’s Jazz Studies), his outreach with workshops and special performances for young children and teenagers, and his unending support of up-and-coming musicians who’ve found their true heartbeats, is unequalled. When your venue hosts John Brown, it doesn’t matter how many horns and cases are coming out of the car, the van or the bus. Your audience is going to swing, cause that’s what happens when you get “John Brown’d.”
In a Word…
“With stellar musicianship from world-class players and fresh treatments of select jazz standards fro the Ellington songbook, this is one swinging tribute of which the Duke would surely have approved." - Jazz Life Japan
“…a phenomenal jazz musician, composer, educator and one of the most articulate people you’ll ever meet.” - Riveting Riffs
“Raising the bar for bassists.” - International Musician Magazine
“…personality and sass, an emotive performance… All the musicians play fabulously...and have created a CD that is inspired and is invested with imagination.” - Jazz Police
“Brown’s woody bass tones are resounding and full of soulful authority… brilliant bass solo… solidly swinging and full of deep feeling from start to finish.” - Jazz Times
A Presenter's Point of View
John Brown’s talents and musical output are remarkable. With each performance, he inspires musicians and audiences alike. His groups’ diversity of styles, the very apparent personal & professional love they have for each other, the utter lack of ever phoning in a single note is such a gift to an audience. There’s a twinkle in every eye on that stage, a trace of someone’s mischievous grin that keeps us all anticipating what comes next. The music is far larger than any single group’s configuration denotes. It doesn’t matter whether it’s “trio,” “quartet,” “quintet,” “big band”... There’s orchestra and symphony in the hall. There’s phenomenal musicality. It’s humbling virtuosity with every tune. The man’s probably making music while he sleeps. It’s involuntary, and non-stop. SB