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New Jersey Jazz Society to Present The Bria Skonberg Quartet, Feat. Tia Fuller and Nicki Parrott, 3/30
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Triple threat bandleader BRIA SKONBERG will be showcasing her trumpet, vocal and compositional talents at the Mayo Performing Arts Center on Sunday March 30th. In 2013 she earned a Jazz Journalists' Association nomination for "Up and Coming Jazz Artist of The Year" and is included in DOWNBEAT Magazine's Rising Star Critics' Poll. She has recently been honored with a New York Bistro Award for "Outstanding Jazz Artist". Best known for her knowledge of classic jazz and instigative nature, she is creating an adventurous style rooted in New Orleans jazz and blues, pop, soul and cabaret. One review states, "I was kind of thinking Norah Jones, Diana Krall but with a dose of the bubbly."
Dynamic saxophonist TIA FULLER has been featured in Jazz Improv Magazine, Rocky Mountain News, The Philadelphia Tribune, The Star Ledger, Downbeat Magazine and many other print and online publications for her vast work as a musical director and solo artist. She has released four albums under her own name and topped the 2013 Downbeat Critics' Rising Star for both Alto Saxophone and Flute. Fuller is part of the all-female band that backs up Beyonce and works regularly with Grammy-award winning bassist Esperanza Spalding. She is well known in the New York scene having played with a number of bands, including the T.S. Monk Septet, the Jon Faddis Jazz Orchestra, the Rufus Reid Septet, the Sean Jones Quintet, the Nancy Wilson Jazz Orchestra, and Wycliffe Gordon Septet.
Skonberg and Fuller met in the horn sections of big bands led by jazz luminaries Nicholas Payton, Wycliffe Gordon and Terri-Lynn Carrington. This will be their first time collaborating as headlining artists which Skonberg says will be "a blending of styles and personalities from different backgrounds.This will be our first time playing in a small band setting, and with that comes the unfiltered trading of ideas. We'll both be sharing original songs among more familiar numbers, and in recognition of Women's History Month we'll be highlighting female artists from Valaida Snow to Joni Mitchell and everything in between. It'll be fun!!"
Also featured in the quartet will be a special guest, bassist/vocalist Nicki Parrott, who played bass with the late guitarist Les Paul's regular Monday night band at the Iridium in New York. Paul was impressed by Parrott's vocal talents, and, according to NPR Music's Grant Jackson, "she's emerged as a fine singer and award-winning composer who's recorded several of her own albums and appeared on dozens of records by other artists." The rest of the band will include two members of Skonberg's regular group, pianist Dalton Ridenhour and drummer Darrian Douglas.