The J.Davis Trio

The J.Davis Trio

 Chicago, Illinois, USA
BandHip HopJazz

Live hip-hop/jazz with clever lyrics. Smart well crafted songs.


Following their musical heart, The J. Davis Trio continues to thrive. They thrive not only because of their connection to real hip hop and jazz music, but also because of their ability to grow and change. Starting as trio, they now have as many as 8-10 people on stage, utilizing many types of instrumentation and styles. Their independence has allowed them to explore and incorporate from unexpected sources, resulting in a sound uniquely their own. Began as an actual trio with Julio Davis/vocals, Dave Smith/bass & Tone Aimone/drums, they realized that in order to play live, they needed another element. Paula Pergl came and provided flute for awhile. When she left, she was soon replaced by long time member, mulit-instrumentalist, Dave Winer. The J.Davis Trio arrived on the Chicago scene with their debut eponymous album, The J.Davis Trio, in 1999 where they created national buzz with a North American tour that included famous Chicago venues like The Metro, The House of Blues, the historic Green Mill Jazz club, and many colleges in the midwest. Tours to the east coast, the CMJ Music Fest in New York, down to the SXSW Music Fest in Austin, TX., to L.A. soon followed
Their next album "The New No. 2" released in 2002 reflected a leap in their development and saw them working with many great Chicago artists. Rappers like Cap D from All Natural and Juice made an appearance, as well as musicians like Jeff Parker from Tortoise and Paul Mertens of The Brian Wilson Group. This effort was well received by critics:
"These four local musicians bill their inventive sound as "rap music for the rest of us". Think of it as Chicago's answer to the fluid, jazzy musically challenging hip-hop of the Roots, and revel in the smart, sexy grooves of their solid debut* album."
-Jim Derogatis Chicago Sun Times.
""This local hip-hop outfit--a quartet, not a trio--makes it's backing tracks the hard way, getting their grooves mostly from real bass and drums. Ron of Japan's trumpet skitters around them, but competes only slightly with rapper Stuart's lucid poetry, which would give these guys an edge even if they used samples."
Monica Kendrick Chicago Reader.

The band released their next album, "These Things Happen" in 2007.
This project saw them reunite with Julio Davis' original rap crew, Chicago legends Stony Island, as well as vocal and musical cameos by Poi Dog Pondering front man Frank Orrall.
In 2011, they returned with their most ambitious recording to date, "Vintage".
The J.Davis Trio has shared the stage with acts such as:
The Roots, M'shelle N'degleocello, Ozomatli, Reuben Wilson, De La Soul, Maceo Parker, Norah Jones, Groove Collective, Talib Kwali, Shinehead, The Greyboy Allstars, Karl Denson, The Pharcyde, Black Eyed Peas, Tortoise, Living Colour, Poi Dog Pondering, and Modeski, Martin and Wood.
Slinky jazz hooks, live trumpet and vibes, and laid-back flows make Chicago's J.Davis Trio pretty much instantly likeable for anyone who enjoys De La Soul or A Tribe Called Quest. Granted, the band wears "Swingers-caliber" shirts and describes itself as "Martini-flavored", but this doesn't dilute it's funky grasp on hip-hop. Here, the group celebrates the release of its new album, "These Things Happen", its first album since 2002's "The New No.2".
- The Onion


The Answer

Written By: Julio Davis

Namaste it's the J all Davis
Independent, owes the game no favors
Can't delay us, light your mind like Vegas
Preaching til you blue in the face but never save us
I got ideas you could pour from a carafe
The rhythm is chroreographed according to match
It's the craft that I put on display
cultivated resonated like bars of the vibes I strike
It's like driving through the city at night, the sound blasting
I'm in the back of the club without asking, showtime
Get on the stage in flow time, define and burn up the kind
and slow time.
Every time you slip in the city, you get reminded
Looking for trouble m#%& and you gon' find it
So true, you suckas can talk but can't do
I keep it in my crew, the definitive few

Chorus x 2:
When can the mind eat the heart like a cancer
When is the question deeper than the answer
123 it's not easy to see in the search for simplicity

I throw the curve concave or convex
I'm moving with a complex speed that breaks necks
I'm clever like a repo man when he collects and
strong when emotional content connects in
Rhythm first, percussion last,
My progressive past, manipulated this aggressive jazz
Moving fast in this night time safari or the slick jungle
Feel the beauty and the dark rumble
Shape your life and life will shape back
Process the data and relay it on a track
And you find its a pleasant surprise, when you open your eyes,
Now you gotta deal with all of the lies
Cause deception standard operating procedure
Spotting the fake from the real's my main feature
Like the back of a frat boys jeep
Eternally connected to the street

Chorus x 2:
When can the mind eat the heart like a cancer
When is the question deeper than the answer
123 it's not easy to see in the search for simplicity


1. 7" single "Music to love ly" - 1997
2. debut "The J.Davis Trio - 1999
3. "The New No.2" - 2002
4. "Krusty" w/DJ Squeak .e. clean on "Yeah Right" skate dvd by Spike Jones - 2005
5. "These things happen" - 2007
6. "Vintage" EP - 2012

Set List

1. The Answer
2. Girl, Intoxicating
3. The Firm Swing
4. The Bell Curve
5. What you won't do
6. Orange Alert
7. Breezay
8. These Things Happen
9. The Big Stomp
10. Thongs in the key of life
11. Tiny Dragon

1. Luck of Lucien - A Tribe Called Quest
2. One Love - Nas
3. Hypnotize - B.I.G.
4. They Reminisce Over You - Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth
5. Dwyck - GangStarr