Home » Jazz Musicians » Christian Howes

Christian Howes

Christian Howes has already made an indelible mark and is poised to be a path-finding figure on the contemporary violin. He’s won recognition and kudos from artists and critics alike. Says guitar pioneer Les Paul, with whom Christian has made numerous appearances: “There is nobody better than this guy.”

The prominent artists Howes has performed and/or recorded with include Greg Osby, Randy Brecker, James Carter, Jack DeJohnette, Akua Dixon’s Quartette Indigo, Billy Hart, D.D. Jackson, David Murray, Steve Turre’s Sextet with Strings, Jane Monheit, Dr. John, Frank Vignola, and Lenny White, to name a few.

A native of Columbus, Ohio, Howes was classically trained beginning at age five. He subsequently performed the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra at 16. After placing in national classical competitions while still in his teens, Howes set out to build upon a strong classical foundation and distinguish himself in jazz, the art of the improvisers. His star has been ascending ever since.

As a bandleader or a featured guest, Howes has performed on such prestigious stages as the Newport, Toronto, Ottawa, and Tri-C jazz festivals. His club work has taken him to such world-renowned venues as Birdland, Iridium, the Knitting Factory, Blues Alley, and the Village Vanguard… and that’s just in the U.S. Christian’s tours have taken him throughout the Midwestern U.S., the Far East, and across Europe, including a part-time residence in Spain, where he has collaborated with some of that country’s finest musicians. In 2002 Howes was featured in performance in the Spanish film Impulsos.

An extremely versatile and flexible artist, this prolific violinist/composer maintains five distinct working ensembles, including the Christian Howes Group (quintet or quartet), the Hot Swing Group, the European Acoustic Trio, the Special Electric Violin Project, and Duo Americana. Howes is also available to provide clinics and master classes for all ages.

Tags

1
Liner Notes

Christian Howes & Richard Galliano: Southern Exposure

Read "Christian Howes & Richard Galliano: Southern Exposure" reviewed by Howard Mandel


Christian Howes wants you to know that Southern Exposure is not simply another violin and accordion record, some light-hearted evocation of Parisian café music. “It's deeper than that," Howes, the 40-year-old violinist who is also an educator and online entrepreneur, says of his 13th album (counting self-produced projects from the 1990s). “I think there's a lot of passion on the record. There's a sort of tragic feel to some of it. “It's distinguished by the fact ...

41
Liner Notes

Yelena Eckemoff: I Am a Stranger in This World

Read "Yelena Eckemoff: I Am a Stranger in This World" reviewed by Mark Sullivan


Russian-born pianist/composer Yelena Eckemoff began setting verses from the Bible's Book of Psalms shortly after her conversion to Christianity, even before her emigration to the United States. But she waited until she had considerable experience working with jazz musicians before producing her jazz arrangements. They were first recorded on her album Better Than Gold and Silver [L&H Production, 2018], which presented ten Psalm settings in both vocal and instrumental versions. The detailed story of how Yelena Eckemoff came to set ...

11
The Jazz Life

It's Not Your Fault—Just Evolve

Read "It's Not Your Fault—Just Evolve" reviewed by Christian Howes


Christian Howes is arguably one of America's finest jazz violinists, standing alongside past masters such as Joe Venuti, Stuff Smith, and John Blake. Many contemporary jazz violinists embrace a broad range of non-jazz styles as players because of choice or circumstance. They think of themselves as improvising violinists who play jazz. But like Jean-Luc Ponty before him, Chris thinks of himself as a jazz musician who happens to play the violin, and he has been acclaimed all over the world ...

74
Album Review

Yelena Eckemoff: Better Than Gold and Silver

Read "Better Than Gold and Silver" reviewed by Mark Sullivan


Russian-born pianist/composer Yelena Eckemoff began setting verses from the Bible's Book of Psalms shortly after her conversion to Christianity, even before her emigration to the United States. But she waited until she had considerable experience working with jazz musicians before attempting these jazz arrangements. The first disc in this double disc set presents settings with two vocalists, tenor Tomás Cruz and mezzo-soprano Kim Mayo, accompanied by a remarkable band: trumpeter Ralph Alessi, guitarist Ben Monder, violinist Christian Howes, bassist Drew ...

614
Interview

Christian Howes: Blues for the Blues Violin

Read "Christian Howes: Blues for the Blues Violin" reviewed by Ian Patterson


It's not difficult to think of great blues artists--there's a roll call of honor as long as that of great jazz artists--and every sizeable town in the world has a blues band or two. So where is the violin? Great blues guitarists and vocalists have never been in short supply, but the great blues violinist, once such an important part of the blues group, has all but disappeared.Eighty or so years ago, dozens of blues recordings featured fiddle ...

348
Album Review

Christian Howes: Out of the Blue

Read "Out of the Blue" reviewed by Ian Patterson


The violin is widely considered as the most expressive of instruments, closely approximating the human voice. It depends, however, to a large degree, on whose hands the instrument is in. Christian Howes is that rare breed of musician who makes the violin talk; using the idiom of the blues on Out of the Blue, Howes gives a virtuoso performance, as full of emotion as it is technically dazzling. Joined by guitarist Robben Ford , who lends his jazz-inflected accent to ...

736
Album Review

Christian Howes: Heartfelt

Read "Heartfelt" reviewed by Mark Corroto


There is always the fear that producing an authentic jazz album with orchestration is too ambitious a project and is doomed under the heaviness associated with such affairs. And that might have been the case here, except the sum of the parts, i.e., violinist Christian Howes and arrangers Kuno Schmid and Roger Kellaway, is certainly more than the instant concept.

For Howes' debut on Resonance Records, he is teamed with legendary pianist Roger Kellaway, the former music director ...

Read more articles

Education

Music Education Monday: Learning jazz violin with Christian Howes, and more

Music Education Monday: Learning jazz violin with Christian Howes, and more

Source: St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman

Although there have been jazz violinists ever since the music began, formal jazz education programs in schools usually are set up to cater mostly to trumpets, trombones, saxophones and rhythm sections, leaving many aspiring string improvisors to forge their own musical paths. Fortunately, there seem to be plenty of instructional materials available to help chart that pathway, both for purchase and for free online. And since pointing out free music education resources available on the internet is the stated premise ...

Performance / Tour

Jazz This Week: Dr. Lonnie Smith and James Carter, Bobby McFerrin, Dianne Reeves, Bill Frisell, Alarm Will Sound, Christian Howes, and More

Jazz This Week: Dr. Lonnie Smith and James Carter, Bobby McFerrin, Dianne Reeves, Bill Frisell, Alarm Will Sound, Christian Howes, and More

Source: St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman

As we head into the final week of Jazz Appreciation Month, culminating next Tuesday in International Jazz Day, there's a fine selection of jazz and creative music performances taking place over the next few days in St. Louis, with several touring headliners on local stages. Let's go to the highlights... Tonight, organist Dr. Lonnie Smith (pictured) and saxophonist James Carter join forces for the first of four nights at Jazz at the Bistro. Although the two men don't normally work ...

Performance / Tour

Christian Howes Performing This Sunday, April 28 at Deco Fortress

Christian Howes Performing This Sunday, April 28 at Deco Fortress

Source: St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman

Violinist Christian Howes is coming to St. Louis to perform at 7:00 p.m. this Sunday, April 28 at the Deco Fortress, 3622 S. Broadway, across from the Lemp Brewery complex. Howes (pictured) formerly was an associate professor at Berklee College of Music, and won first place in the “Rising Star -Violin" category of the 2011 Down Beat Critic's Poll. He has released 13 albums as a leader, including his most recent, Southern Exposure, which came out earlier this year on ...

Contest

Enter the "Christian Howes - Southern Exposure" Giveaway at All About Jazz!

Enter the "Christian Howes - Southern Exposure"  Giveaway at All About Jazz!

Source: All About Jazz

All About Jazz members are invited to enter the Resonance Records “Christian Howes - Southern Exposure“ giveaway contest starting today. We'll select FIVE winners at the conclusion of the contest on March 15th. Click here to enter the contest

(Becoming a fan of Christian Howes at AAJ automatically enters you in the contest.)

Good luck! Your Friends at Resonance Records About Southern Exposure

Throughout his life and career, Christian Howes has thrived on venturing outside of his comfort ...

75

Performance / Tour

Jazz This Week: Matthew Shipp, Trombone Shorty, Christian Howes, Jazz in Pink, Anita Jackson, and More

Jazz This Week: Matthew Shipp, Trombone Shorty, Christian Howes, Jazz in Pink, Anita Jackson, and More

Source: St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman

While many St. Louisans understandably will be preoccupied with cheering for the Cardinals in this week's National League baseball championship series (and possibly hoping for a return appearance from the infamous Rally Squirrel), there's plenty of good jazz and creative music happening around town over the next seven days, too. Let's go to the highlights: Tonight, the Meramec Jazz Lab Band performs at the Black Cat Theatre in Maplewood, in what will be the first of four Wednesday night concerts ...

97

Performance / Tour

Jazz Arts Group Presents "Don't Listen to This!" - An Evening of Banned Music Featuring Byron Stripling, Dave Powers & Christian Howes

Jazz Arts Group Presents "Don't Listen to This!" - An Evening of Banned Music Featuring Byron Stripling, Dave Powers & Christian Howes

Source: Michael Ricci

The Jazz Arts Group's Inside Track series kicks off the 2011-12 season on September 23 24 at the Lincoln Theatre with “Don't Listen To This!," an evening of music and lyrics that once fanned the flames of controversy, featuring Byron Stripling, Dave Powers, Christian Howes and a pre-concert lecture with the Thurber House. Music censorship didn't begin in the '80s with Tipper Gore and the PMRC. Dean Martin's hit song “Wham! Bam! Thank You Ma'am" was banned by radio stations ...

123

Performance / Tour

Christian Howes: Multi-Instrumental Performance

Christian Howes: Multi-Instrumental Performance

Source: JazzINK by Andrea Canter

I previously saw Christian Howes at the Dakota, about three years ago. He played violin. I don't recall that he also played guitar and bass. In looking back at my photos from that night, he came with a quartet (keyboard, drums, guitar). And had he confined his playing to just violin last week (October 27th) at the Artists Quarter, it would have been a good evening of eclectic, even eccentric music ranging from bop and blues to down-home electronica. But ...

147

69

Interview

Violinist Christian Howes Interviewed at All About Jazz...And More!

Violinist Christian Howes Interviewed at All About Jazz...And More!

Source: All About Jazz

It's not difficult to think of great blues artists—there's a roll call of honor as long as that of great jazz artists—and every sizeable town in the world has a blues band or two. So where is the violin? Great blues guitarist sand vocalists have never been in short supply, but the great blues violinist, once such an important part of the blues group, has all but disappeared. Christian Howes—a classically trained violinist who has turned his hand to all ...

235

Contest

Enter the Resonance "Christian Howes - Out of the Blue" Giveaway

Enter the Resonance "Christian Howes - Out of the Blue" Giveaway

Source: All About Jazz

All About Jazz members are invited to enter the Resonance “Christian Howes - Out of the Blue“ giveaway contest starting today. We'll select FIVE winners at the conclusion of the contest on October 2nd.Click here to enter the contest (Following Christian Howes at AAJ automatically enters you in the contest.) Good luck! Your Friends at Resonance Records About Christian Howes and Out of the Blue Already considered among the world's top jazz violinists, the Columbus, Ohio prodigy was classically trained ...

“It used to be you could hardly find a good jazz violinist. Nowadays there are four for five really good players, but there is nobody better than this guy.” —Les Paul

“Not since Jean-Luc Ponty has a violinist ranged from pure classical jazz to fuzz tone rock to convincing jazz with such authority.” —Chicago Reader

“…Arguably the most intriguing young violinist in jazz…” —The Minneapolis Tribune

“…As a jazz violinist he has no peer…” —All About Jazz

“Christian Howes is the incredible hulk of the jazz violin.” —Matt Glaser, violinist and Chair of the Berklee School of Music Strings Department

Primary Instrument

Violin

Location

Asheville

Photos

Music

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

I Am a Stranger in...

L&H Production
2022

buy

Better Than Gold and...

L&H Production
2018

buy

Southern Exposure

Resonance Records
2013

buy

Out Of The Blue

Resonance Records
2010

buy

Heartfelt

Resonance Records
2008

buy

Tango Doblado (Bent Tango)

From: Southern Exposure
By Christian Howes

Bobby's Bad

From: Out Of The Blue
By Christian Howes

The Wind

From: Heartfelt
By Christian Howes

Videos

Similar

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.