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John Goldsby

Since 1994, John Goldsby has been a member of the Westdeutscher Rundfunk Big Band(the Cologne Radio Big Band). From 1980 to 1994, John lived in New York City and was an active fixture on the New York jazz scene, performing everywhere from Carnegie Hall, to the nightclubs of Greenwich Village, to concert stages around the world. John is actively involved in the jazz scene as a bassist, bandleader, composer, teacher, clinician and author.

The son of a Baptist minister, John was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky. He played piano, guitar, and electric bass before taking up the double bass at age 18. His early musical experiences include work with hometown jazz greats Jimmy Raney, Helen Humes, and Jamey Aebersold. In 1979, John got the gig with the house trio at a jazz club in Louisville that brought in famous jazz soloists to play with the trio. For almost one year, John played with some of the legends of jazz including: Jay McShann, Buddy Tate, Johnny Hartman, Barney Kessel, Tom Harrell, Dave Liebman, Buddy DeFranco, and others. When this gig ended, John knew he had to move to New York. In 1980, he put the bass in the car and made his move...

After moving to New York, John found himself in good company with all of the other young players on the scene. His first experiences with the established New York elite included gigs with Albert Dailey, Sal Nestico, John Hicks, Benny Bailey and Bob Wilber. Goldsby has recorded with many world-class musicians, including Scott Hamilton, John Lewis, and the American Jazz Orchestra.

Goldsby’s most recent recordings include"Space for the Bass" [Bass Lion], with Francesco Cafiso, karolina Strassmayer, Martin Sasse, and Hans Dekker, “Live at the Nachbar” (Bass Lion, 2008), a powerful sax-bass-drums trio with Jacob Duncan and Jason Tiemann, and “The Visit” (Bass Lion, 2009), a duo with pianist Bill Dobbins. The John Goldsby, Peter Erskine, Bill Dobbins Trio are featured on the highly-acclaimed recording "Cologne" (Fuzzy Music). “Frisky” and “Live at Le Pirat” (Organic Music) are the recent releases with trumpeter John Marhsall. “Feed the Birds,” "The Shimmering Colours of Stained Glass," and "The Underwater Poet" with Hubert Nuss, "Ups and Downs" with Ludwig Nuss, "Tesoro" with Rolf Roemer, "All John" with Hans Peter Salentin, and guitarist Joachim Schoenacker's "Blunatic" are among recently released recordings which feature John. "Behind Closed Doors" with Peter Erskine, "The Chase" with Randy Sandke, "An Ellington Affair" with Bill Mays, "Big Man's Blues" with Andy Fusco, and "The Return of the Great Guitars" (Herb Ellis, Larry Coryell, Mudell Lowe, and Charlie Byrd) are among other noteworthy recordings. Three critically acclaimed records with the Frank Vignola Trio are "Appel Direct," "Let It Happen," and "Look Right, Jog Left” and “Off Broadway.”

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Album Discography

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Samba Jazz Odyssey

Zoho Music


Blue Soul

Strikezone Records



Basic Lion Music




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