Jay Hoggard

Jay Hoggard

Musicians | Instrument: Vibraphone | Location: Hartford

Updated: June 29, 2023

Born: September 31, 1954

Vibraphonist, Composer Jay Hoggard’s music has touched the hearts and souls of listeners around Planet Earth for 40 years. Jay Hoggard has long ranked with the greatest vibraphone innovators. Jay’s music is positive, spiritual, uplifting, and happy. He masterfully draws on traditional and contemporary musical vocabulary to develop new directions for the vibraphone. Jay seamlessly blends jazz and gospel roots with African marimba rhythms. His performance repertoire represents the three B’s of the jazz tradition (Blues, Bop, Ballads) with original innovations. Born in Washington, DC, Jay Hoggard was raised in Mt. Vernon, New York in a religious family.His father was a Bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Zion denomination. At age 15, Jay began playing the vibraphone. "One night I had a dream that I was playing the vibes. I asked my father to rent me a set and from the first moment, I knew that this was what I was supposed to do." Jay majored in the renown World Music program at Wesleyan University . He toured Europe and played at Carnegie Hall during his freshman year. In his junior year, he traveled to Tanzania to study East African marimba music. Jay graduated from Wesleyan in 1976 and returned to New York City in 1977 to be proclaimed a young lion of the vibraphone. Jay Hoggard has recorded 22 CD’s as a leader and over 50 as a collaborator. His newest CD, released in 2016 on the JHVM label, is HARLEM HIEROGLYPHS. This two disc recording features Gary Bartz saxophones, James Weidman piano,organ, Nat Adderley,Jr piano,organ, Belden Bullock bass, and Yoron Israel drums. Noted jazz writer Owen McNally recently declared in his Jazz Corridor column for WNPR.org : “ Hoggard has created a triumphant jazz album, a dramatic showcase for his diverse composing skills… While the standards get royal treatment, Hoggard’s originals are the album’s crown jewels. Among these are the celebratory rent party special, "Harlem Jazzbirds Swingin’ and Swayin’"; "Sonic Hieroglyphs," an ode to jazz’s sophisticated sonic semiotics, signs and symbols expressing the sweet and bittersweet mysteries of life, and Disposable Consumption, landscaped with brilliant corners and a mysterious motif of sharp consciousness morphing in and out of an edgy, subconscious dream state… Throughout, there’s the underlying theme of the hieroglyphs of jazz, the music’s uniquely creative, emblematic lexicon, alive with nuance and layers of symbolic meaning. Hoggard’s striking gallery of sonic portraits reflects many inspirations, both artistic and personal, that nourish his imagination…Harlem Hieroglyphs is alive with open-ended potential, perhaps even as the foreshadowing of a historical and culturally-oriented musical theater work graced with evocative narrative pieces resonating with cultural relevance.

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JHVM LABEL RELEASES FIVE JAY HOGGARD RECORDINGS! by Scott Yanow A very significant vibraphonist for for over 30 years, Jay Hoggard has long ranked with the greatest innovators of his instrument including Lionel Hampton, Red Norvo, Milt Jackson, Terry Gibbs, Bobby Hutcherson, Gary Burton, Khan Jamal and Walt Dickerson, as well as his contemporaries Steve Nelson, Joe Locke, and Stefon Harris. The release of five of his CDs, including SOULAR POWER and SOLO FROM TWO SIDES, gives listeners an opportunity to experience some of the many sides of this vital musician, and they document the vibraphonist's musical language during the first ten years of the 21st century

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Jay Hoggard Albums

A Walk Thru The Colorful Forest

From: Harlem Hieroglyphs
By Jay Hoggard