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Justin Kauflin

Justin Kauflin is an award-winning American jazz pianist, composer, producer, educator and Quincy Jones Artist. He performs worldwide, has recorded on 31 albums, composed the film score for the critically acclaimed documentary Keep On Keepin On, published 51 original compositions, produced 4 albums as leader and is on faculty for several jazz camps.

Born March 10, 1986 in Silver Spring, MD, Justin began music at age 4 with Suzuki violin. After a decade of classical violin and piano, he switched to jazz piano in high school at the Governor's School for Performing Arts (VA) studying with Liz Barnes and Old Dominion University's John Toomey. He attended the Vail Jazz Workshop (CO), Betty Carter's Jazz Ahead Residency (DC) and received top honors in jazz festivals across the U.S. He began performing jazz professionally at age 15, most notably with the Jae Sinnett Trio.

In 2004, Justin attended William Paterson University (NJ) where he was taken under the wings of legendary trumpeter, Clark Terry and became a member of the Clark Terry Ensemble. He also had the privilege of learning from his heroes, Mulgrew Miller and Harold Mabern. He graduated summa cum laude, moved to NYC and at age 23 produced, led, composed and performed on his debut CD, Introducing Justin Kauflin.

In 2012, he served as House Pianist at Havana Nights Jazz Club (VA) where his trio headlined regularly. In that year, he won the VSA International Young Soloist Award, was voted VEER's Jazz Artist of the Year and was selected as semifinalist in the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition.

During this time, Justin's relationship with mentor Clark Terry was being chronicled by friend and fellow musician, Al Hicks. Five years in the making, the resultant documentary, Keep On Keepin' On, won numerous awards and made the Oscar's Short List. Justin composed the film score and was subsequently signed for management by legendary producer and music icon, Quincy Jones, who also oversaw Justin's second and fourth full-length albums, Dedication (2015) and Coming Home (2018), the latter produced by Derrick Hodge. Dedication debuted at #6 on CMJ Jazz chart, #10 on Billboard's Traditional Jazz Chart, hit #1 on JazzWeek's chart and remained in the top 10 spot for 9 straight weeks. Justin went on to record on 10 more albums, 3 of which he produced as leader, and brought the film/workshops & performances around the world.

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Album Review
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"What gives the American pianist Justin Kauflin another edge over his rivals is the soulfulness of his repertoire... this is a musician who wants to do more than make you admire his virtuosity" -The Times review of Justin Kauflin Trio at Ronnie Scotts, London

"His compositions radiate an honesty and passion that are only shadowed by his spirit...Humble as he may be, dude can play" - Paul Nassar, Revive Magazine

"His playing is not just precise technically but absolutely crystalline in execution, and he holds nothing back intellectually..." -Jazz in Europe review of "Synesthesia"

"Definitely one of the best piano trio albums around this year...Revelling in writing highly involving tunes whether anthemic (B-Dub) or tuggingly heartfelt (No Matter)...or the ability to be SO natural on For Clark, dedicated to mentor Clark Terry." -Stephen Graham, Marlbank

"...rich in dynamic detail and showed off his cogent mix influences that ranged from buoyant swing to elongated Jarrett-esque lines, the odd hip hop nod to Robert Glasper, Bill Evans was in there too...Kauflin is clearly in possession of a vast reserve of free flowing musicianship" -Jazzwise

"Kauflin's dozen originals sparkle consistently with the sounds of exhilaration and religious devotion

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Dizzy Spins


Album Discography

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson


Truth Revolution Recording Collective


Live at Sam First

Sam First Records


Crossing the Water

Self Produced


Christmas Candy EP

Justin Kauflin Music



Storyville Records


Coming Home

Justin Kauflin Music



From: After|Life
By Justin Kauflin

Wistful Gaze

From: Crossing the Water
By Justin Kauflin


From: Coming Home
By Justin Kauflin


From: Introducing Justin Kauflin
By Justin Kauflin


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