John E. Lawrence

John E. Lawrence

BandJazzSoul

A Jazz musical tribute to Motown complete with a ten peace horn section, rhythm section, background singers and guest vocalist, featuring nationally acclaimed Jazz Guitarist, John E. Lawrence

Biography

John E. Lawrence, a life long resident of Ypsilanti is one of Michigan’s most talented and respected guitarists. John is now gaining national recognition with his recent contract with Mel Bay Publications, Inc., one of the country’s largest publishers of instructional materials. Mel Bay has produced for John a video tape entitled “Jazz Improvisation, Walking Bass Lines, and Chord Melodies.” Released in the summer of 2001 are three companion instructional books with compact discs (CD’s) which include "Improvising Solos for Guitar, "Walking Bass Solos and Chord Melody Solos. The books and CD’s can be used alone or in conjunction with the videotape. John’s most recent accomplishments include contracts to endorse Heritage Guitars, Takamine Guitars and La Bella Guitar Strings. He is also featured in Mel Bay’s “Collectors Edition Anthology of Jazz Guitar Solos” This collection features solos by some of the world’s finest jazz guitarist. John has also written two articles in Mel Bay’s Internet magazine, one entitled” Practice is the key to musical success” and another entitled “Blues Improvisation” for March and April 2000 issues.
Mr. Lawrence credits his musical talents first and foremost to God, then to the late Dr. Morris J. Lawrence Jr. (no relation). Dr. Lawrence was an instructor and chair of the Music Department at Washtenaw Community College (WCC). Under the tutelage of Dr. Lawrence, John was challenged and inspired to continuously improve his skills as a guitarist. Following in the footsteps of his mentor, John became an instructor at WCC where he has taught for 27 years and is presently the Director of the Music Performance Program. In less than two years he has developed over twenty-five new courses and three Certificate Programs (Guitar Studies, Piano Studies, Music Production and Engineering). In 2008 Washtenaw Community College awarded John with the Morris J. Lawrence award; which is the highest honor given to a faculty member. He as developed the “Living Legends Series.” The series provides a stage for famous recording artists to be interviewed and share their life stories in front of an audience followed by a question-and-answer period, and after a brief intermission the artist perform the concert. The program provides Washtenaw Community College students to receive firsthand knowledge from musical legends. The series has hosted artists such as: Mavis Staples, The Four Tops, Ashford and Simpson, Earl Klugh and The Temptations. John has been the opening act for the series and performs with most of the artist as Guitarist and Director of the Living Legends house band. In 2007 Dean of Humanities and Social Science Dr. Bill Abernethy awarded John with the Living Legend Award for successfully completing five years of the series.
In the realm of performance, Mr. Lawrence served as musical director and lead guitarist for vocalist Carl Carlton, who was the opening act for such famed artists as Smokey Robinson, Chaka Khan, Lionel Richie and the Commodores, Rick James, Teena Marie and Frankie Beverly and Maze.

Among Mr. Lawrence’s many accomplishments is a performance at Carnegie Hall. In addition to touring throughout the United States and performing at Jazz Festivals such as: Boston Globe, New Orleans, and Montreaux Detroit, he has performed in Haiti, Surinam, Germany, and the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

John has made television appearances on three nationally syndicated programs: Kelly & Company, PM Magazine and Good Morning America.

One of Mr. Lawrence’s most memorable occasions was with legendary jazz guitarist, Mr. Kenny Burrell. Mr. Burrell asked John to sit in with him at the famed Baker’s Keyboard Lounge in Detroit, Michigan. After the performance, Kenny commended John on his playing ability.

His sound recordings include, The Supreme Dream, Old Smooth, Summer Nights, All By Myself, Merry Christmas from John E. Lawrence, Winter Wonder Land, , and A Solo Guitar Christmas.
For more information, please e-mail him at johnelaw@wccnet.edu

Discography

CDs that I have released Old Smooth,Summer Nights, All By Myself,Merry Christmas from John E. Lawrence,Winter Wonderland, A Solo Guitar Christmas

Set List

1. MORE LOVE
2. TRACKS OF MY TEARS
3. JUST TO SEE HER
4. I SECOND THAT EMOTION
5. AINT NOTHING’ LIKE THE REAL THING
6. AIN’T NO MOUNTAIN HIGH ENOUGH
7. AINT NO WOMAN LIKE THE ONE I'VE GOT
8. STANDING IN THE SHADOWS OF LOVE
9. REACH OUT I’LL BE THERE (FOUR TOPS)
10. NEVER CAN SAY GOODBYE
11. I’LL BE THERE
12. I WANT YOU BACK
13. TOUCH ME IN THE MORNING
14. REACH OUT AND TOUCH SOMBODYS HAND
15. JUST MY IMAGINATION
16. MY GIRL
17. MY BABY
18. SINCE I LOST MY BABY
19. OOH BABY BABY