John Douglas Quartet
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John Douglas Quartet

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Jazzhead-Jazzhead, Jazzhead-Ancestor



John Douglas is your Funk specialist, your Acid- and Latin-Jazz All-star, and a seasoned Be-Bop professional. With dexterous ease, he rips the high notes, caresses the low notes, and rocks the melodic scales in between – all without compromise on clarity or tonal quality. Again and again, his exclusive trumpet style is described as "hefty”, “technically accomplished," “unexpected,” and downright "phat!” Douglas' performance career began while studying at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. During these years, John collaborated with three players to form The Tracy Science Quartet. Since that inception, keyboardist Craig Taborn, drummer Gerald Cleaver, and bassist Trent Mitchell have earned their own notable levels of musical recognition and achievement. In Detroit in 1991, John formulated the first John Douglas Quartet, with Julian Van Slyke on drums, T.J. Bond on bass, and Kelvin Sholar ..boards. Then, in 1996, John and five players embraced a new musical era called Jazzhead - arguably one the most influential modern jazz bands from the Midwest in recent times. The monstrous success of Jazzhead's self-entitled debut recording, co-produced by ex-Parliament sideman Larry Fratangelo, earned the group 1999's Detroit Music Award for Best Jazz Recording. For extra measure, Jazzhead swept that year's Detroit Music Awards for Best Modern Jazz Group and Best Jazz Group Deserving Wider Recognition, which they snatched again in 1998. As the music and band evolved, Jazzhead was nominated for the Best Modern Jazz Group in 1999 and 2000 and later received the award in 2002. For over 12 years, John Douglas' pioneering spirit continues to thrive as he performs in venues in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Douglas' dynamic range of sound and space is documented on a variety of television, news magazine, and radio programs, and witnessed at renowned venues across the globe. John performed with Francisco Mora, Marshall Allen (Sun Ra Arkestra), and Carl Craig (Planet-E), at the 2003 North Sea Jazz Festival in Holland. In 2004, he toured with Theo Parrish and the Rotating Assembly for the Import Music Festival and a ParaDisco appearance in Amsterdam. Also in 2004, he played the Bern Jazz Festival in Switzerland with celebrated Blues Diva Bettye LaVette. Television appearances include the Ground Zero Blues Divas Festival with host Morgan Freeman and Bettye LaVette in 2004, and a Greektown Casino commercial in 2005. In 2007, Douglas filmed a commercial for Adidas with Theo Parish as a part of Adidas’ new worldwide Sounds of the City advertising campaign. John Douglas has performed with legends like the Machito Orchestra, Los Munequitos De Matanzas, Allan Barnes (Donald Byrd’s Blackbirds), and Gladys Night. He has played alongside and studied with jazz greats such as Marcus Belgrave, Wendell Harrison, Larry Smith, Kevin Good (Detroit Symphony Orchestra), P-Funk's Larry Frantangelo, and toured nation-wide with R&B icons like The Chi-lites, The Stylistics, and the Dramatics. Album recordings include performances with Francisco Mora, Theo Parrish, Althea Renee, Gayelynn McKinney, and the Dramatics. Even as times change, so has Douglas' exploration of possibilities and creative endeavors. You can find Douglas working with Francisco Mora’s Outerzone Orchestra, Straight Ahead, Scott Gwinnell’s Big Band Jazz Orchestra, and with the long-standing Jerry Ross Band. John Douglas continues to explore new dimensions with a pulsating line-up of jazz musicians forming the present-day version of the John Douglas Quartet. Recording his originals (on Submerge Records, 2008 - JD's Pursuit), this dream team consists of T. "Butter" Hawkins on drums, Damon Warmack on bass, and Demetrius "Krayon" Nabors ..boards. Best of all, just as the group's powerful sounds, skills, and stamina indulge the senses, John provides an insinuating energy that both lights up the stage and minds of audiences everywhere.