Since moving from Detroit to New York City in 1989, trumpeter Jon-Erik Kellso’s varied career as a performer, recording artist, and educator is distinguished by his deep knowledge of his instrument’s voice throughout American popular music. A wide array of musical stylists – including Catherine Russell, Rachael & Vilray, and Wynton Marsalis – all find, in Jon-Erik, a masterful player who deftly elevates the trumpet’s traditional vocabulary into something contemporary and personal.
This is also evidenced in his educational videos for Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Jazz Academy and, when not touring, regular performances with his group, The EarRegulars (at the historic Ear Inn Sundays since 2007), tenure as the featured trumpet soloist with Vince Giordano’s Nighthawks (every Monday at Birdland starting in May, ‘23), and performances at important NYC venues, including Dizzy’s, Smalls and Cafe Bohemia.
His sound is recognizable in television and movie soundtracks, such as “Ghost World,” “The Aviator,” “Bessie,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” and “Boardwalk Empire” for which the Nighthawks won a Grammy, as well as over 100 recordings including his most recent CD “Sweet Fruits, Salty Roots.”
editor’s note: Jon-Erik has many terrific videos on YouTube. The clip above just gives you a taste. RDM