Tulsa Jazz.Com’s National Artist Spotlight: Terri Lyne Carrington


GRAMMY® award-winning drummer, composer and bandleader Terri Lyne Carrington was born in 1965 in Medford, Massachusetts. After an extensive touring career of over 20 years with luminaries like Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Al Jarreau, Stan Getz, David Sanborn, Joe Sample, Cassandra Wilson, Clark Terry, Dianne Reeves and more, she returned to her hometown where she was appointed professor at her alma mater, Berklee College of Music. Terri Lyne also received an honorary doctorate from Berklee College of Music in 2003.

After studying under full scholarship at Berklee, with the encouragement of her mentor, Jack DeJohnette, Carrington moved to New York in 1983. For 5 years she was a much in-demand musician, working with James Moody, Lester Bowie, Pharoah Sanders, and others. In the late ‘80s she relocated to Los Angeles, where she gained recognition on late night TV as the house drummer for the Arsenio Hall Show, then again in the late ‘90s as the drummer on the Quincy Jones late night TV show, VIBE, hosted by Sinbad.

In 1989, Carrington released a GRAMMY®-nominated debut CD on Verve entitled Real Life Story, which featured Carlos Santana, Grover Washington Jr., Wayne Shorter, Patrice Rushen, Gerald Albright, John Scofield, Greg Osby, and Hiram Bullock. Other solo CDs include 2002’s Jazz is a Spirit, which features Herbie Hancock, Gary Thomas, Wallace Roney, Terence Blanchard, Kevin Eubanks, and Bob Hurst, and 2004’s Structure, a cooperative group which features Adam Rogers, Jimmy Haslip and Greg Osby. Both CDs were released on the Europe-based ACT Music label and enjoyed considerable media attention and critical acclaim in the European and Japanese markets.pick-em-terri-lyne-carringtons-money-jungle-provocative-in-blue-for-best-instrumental-jazz-album-grammy

Carrington’s production and songwriting collaborations with artists such as Gino Vannelli, Peabo Bryson, Dianne Reeves, Siedah Garrett, Marilyn Scott have produced notable works as well, including her production of the Dianne Reeves GRAMMY®-nominated CD, That Day, as well as Dianne Reeves GRAMMY® Award-winning CD, Beautiful Life, in 2014.

Carrington has performed on many recordings throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s thru today. Notable examples of her work include Herbie Hancock’s GRAMMY® Award-winning CD Gershwin’s World, where she played alongside Joni Mitchell and Stevie Wonder. She has toured in many of Hancock’s musical configurations (from electric to acoustic) and is featured on his Future2Future DVD.

After a hiatus from the U.S. recording scene as a solo recording artist, Carrington returned in 2008 with More To Say… (Real Life Story: NextGen). Joining her was an impressive all-star cast of jazz and contemporary jazz instrumentalists, including George Duke, Everette Harp, Kirk Whalum, Jimmy Haslip, Greg Phillinganes, Gregoire Maret, Christian McBride, Danilo Perez, Patrice Rushen, Robert Irving III (who also serves as co-producer), Chuck Loeb, Dwight Sills, and legendary vocalists Les McCann and Nancy Wilson.

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Carrington released The Mosaic Project in 2011, her fifth recording overall and first on Concord Jazz. The critically acclaimed CD, which won a GRAMMY® Award for Best Jazz Vocal Album, gathered a myriad of voices and crystallized them into a multi-faceted whole that far outweighed the sum of its parts. She produced the 14-song set which included some of the most prominent female jazz artists of the last few decades: Esperanza Spalding, Dianne Reeves, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Sheila E., Nona Hendryx, Cassandra Wilson, Geri Allen and several others. Carrington said the emergence of so many great female jazz instrumentalists over the last couple of decades is what made an album like The Mosaic Project possible.

In 2013, Carrington released Money Jungle: Provocative in Blue, her much anticipated homage to Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus and Max Roach, to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the release of their iconic 1963 Money Jungle album. The recording featured Gerald Clayton and Christian McBride, with guests Clark Terry, Lizz Wright, Herbie Hancock and others. Carrington made history when she became the first woman to win a GRAMMY® Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Album.81oinPR-VUL._SL1500_

On August 7, 2015, Carrington released The Mosaic Project: LOVE and SOUL. Like its predecessor, the album presents Carrington leading a rotating cast of superb female instrumentalists and vocalists that includes Oleta Adams, Natalie Cole, Paula Cole, Lalah Hathaway, Chaka Khan, Chanté Moore, Valerie Simpson, Nancy Wilson, Jaguar Wright and Lizz Wright, as well as saxophonist Tia Fuller, trumpeter Ingrid Jensen; bassists Meshell Ndegoecello and Linda Oh; and keyboardists Geri Allen, Patrice Rushen and Rachel Z.

On The Mosaic Project: LOVE and SOUL, Carrington juxtaposes her salute to female artists by paying homage to various male artists who have either influenced her professionally and/or informed her musicality, such as Nick Ashford, George Duke, Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra, Luther Vandross and Bill Withers. “Whenever I do something that celebrates women, I never want it to feel like it’s something that excludes men,” she explains. “On this record, I consciously wanted to celebrate the various relationships women have with men either through original songs of mine or cover songs by male composers and song writers.” The male presence and perspective on The Mosaic Project: LOVE and SOUL is even more realized by Billy Dee Williams, who contributes insightful spoken-word interludes through the disc.

More About Terri Lyne Carrington:

Website: http://www.terrilynecarrington.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerriLyneCarrington

Twitter: https://twitter.com/tlcarrington

Instagram: https://instagram.com/terrilynecarrington/

Tulsa Jazz Music Group Website: http://www.tulsajazzmusicgroup.com

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The Begonias Performing at The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame Sunday March 29th


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The Myron and Booker Variety Show at The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame

Myron and Booker

In vocalist Booker Gillespie, Myron Oliver has found a kindred spirit – especially when it comes to the local music scene. Like saxophonist Oliver, Gillespie not only performs a lot in and around Tulsa; he also appreciates the amount of talent he sees and hears when he’s a member of the audience.

           “So Booker and I decided to book a variety show,” says Oliver. “Whatever we do, we’re big supporters of local talent, no matter what genre or what style it is. This is a chance for us to play with the guys – some of the guys, at least – we like, and get to share some of that local talent on the Jazz Hall stage.”

Oliver has been down this path before, most recently in October of 2012, when he brought a similar variety of talent to the Jazz Depot in a well-received event billed as the Myron Oliver Friday Night Showcase.

“And for the most part,” he notes, “we’ve got different people than I had on that one. There’s so much talent in Tulsa. You can go out every night and hear somebody different and be equally wowed by what you hear.”

Oliver and Gillespie have both been wowing Tulsa crowds themselves, both together and separately, for the past several years. In addition to performing jazz-oriented shows together, Gillespie sings with Oliver’s busy cover band, FuZed.

fuzed cover

“We wanted to do something a little bit different from what we do when we’re playing in front of the party dance crowd on the late-night thing,” explains Oliver, “so we put together a band of musicians that aren’t the ones we normally play with – some of our musical cohorts. We’ve got Adrion Robbins, who’s played keyboards with Charlie Redd and Starr Fisher and a bunch of different people. Randy Cook is playing drums. I’m in another band, called Echo, with him. Travis Fite is playing guitar, and David Mooney’s on bass.

“We’ve got a variety of different music and some guest singers. Of course, the ladies from FuZed [Tina Phillips and Oliver’s wife, Tylisha Oliver] are going to sing a few songs and do some background vocals. We’ve got some Stevie Ray Vaughan in the set from Dylan Whitney, a young guitar player who’s one of my favorites. I think he’s 17 years old now, but I’ve known him since he was about 13. He’s been a professional for years. He’s just amazing.”

Another youngster on the bill is vocalist Alexsa Oliver, Myron and Tylisha’s fourteen-year-old daughter.  Other featured performers include saxophonist Paul Chatman and singer Benjamin Smith.

“I met Paul at the Jazz Hall, at one of the Tuesday Night Jams, probably six months ago or so, and we hit it off well. Since then, he’s been my go-to guy on saxophone, whenever I’m needing another horn to fill out a full band song, or to fill in on a gig that someone’s contacted me about. I want to get him some gigs out there and give him some exposure.

“Benjamin Smith is like the king of karaoke, and I say that in the best way. I met him a year and a half or two years ago, and I’ve been trying to get him up on stage with a band. The guy can sing. He puts you in mind of Luther Vandross or Teddy Pendergrass, and I had to get him in on this.”

myron and booker live

Then, of course, there’ll be the contributions of Gillespie and Oliver.

“Booker’s going to unveil an original song, a blues tune, and we’ve got a few other blues tunes on there,” says Oliver. “We’ve got a couple of standards, a little neo-soul, some R&B and jazz-funk. I’ve got some songs that are just going to be saxophone, with no vocals, so we’ll spread things out pretty well.

“Booker and I like a lot of the same kinds of music, and while we know that people will always try to put you in a box, we’re so far outside of any box people would want to put us in,” he adds with a laugh. “We’re diverse in the types of music we like and can perform well. Booker’s got an original country song – he loves country music. And my band, FuZed, covers everything. If they request country, we play country. If they request pop and rock, we can do that. Having that common life in music makes it fun for us.”

And, he notes, it’s also fun to present a variety of music to the audiences at the Jazz Depot.


“For us to be able to get somebody who’s known for rock or for R&B to be on that stage playing jazz, blues, funk, soul, whatever, just sheds light on how diverse the Jazz Hall really is and how much it supports music in general. It’s called the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, but people don’t know that any artistry is accepted and welcome there.”
The Myron and Booker Variety Show is set to begin at 5:00 p.m. Sunday, March 1, at the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, located in downtown Tulsa’s Jazz Depot, 111 E. First Street. Tickets can be purchased at the Depot, from www.jazzhalltickets.com, or by calling 918-928-JAZZ. General admission is $15, reserved table seating $20. Seniors and Jazz Hall members are admitted for $10, and high school and junior high students for $5.  Refreshments will be available for purchase.

The show is the first in the Jazz Hall’s 2015 Spring Concert Series.

The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fameis a 501(c)(3) non-profit cultural and educational organization, with a mission to inspire creativity and improve the quality of life for all Oklahomans through the preservation, education, and performance of jazz, our uniquely American art form.

jazz hall at night