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A revolutionary and key figure in contemporary jazz, Jason Moran is making a progressive impact in the world of jazz. Growing up in Houston, Texas, Moran turned his classically trained piano skills into jazz filled fusion at an early age and continues to pursue this medium. Moran uses classical, blues, and jazz techniques, that bolsters funk, hip-hop, and rock influences. A recent MacArthur Fellow in 2010, the pianist/composer uses history as a mode for inspiration such as the civil rights movements in the 1950s. In fact, Thelonius Monk, who remains a major influence on him, sparked Moran's interest in continuing his musical endeavors with piano.
The Down Beat's critics poll named Moran Rising Star Jazz Artist, Rising Star Pianist, and Rising Star Composer for three years straight from 2003-2005. In 2007, he was named a USA Prudential Fellow. Moran was featured on NPR's "Piano Jazz: Rising Stars" back in March and is currently the top jazz advisor for the Kennedy Center where Dr. Billy Taylor had left off. Moran is currently performing with his band, the Bandwagon, and will be playing in Worcester, November 9th at 8PM at Tuckerman Hall, sponsored by Music Worcester.
A self-taught Latin percussionist since the age of 12 when his father handed him Cal Tjader’s 1960 “Latino” album featuring Mongo Santamaria and Willie Bobo back in 1966, and an LP fiberglass conga and told him, “Here, learn to play right with these”, he’s been living and breathing Latin Jazz since.
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