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Dan Miller


Dan Miller was born in Waukegan, Illinois on May 31,1969 to John and Virginia Miller. He began playing the trumpet in grade school with the encouragement of his father (his brother David plays the trombone). Growing up, he would listen to records with his father (including Miles, Dizzy, Chet, Maynard, Basie and Sinatra) which helped him form the idea of what jazz trumpet should sound like.

Dan relates, "Chicago in the 1970's and 1980's had an incredibly vibrant jazz scene. There was Joe Segal's Jazz Showcase that had Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, Max Roach, Horace Silver, Woody Shaw, Joe Henderson, Phil Woods with Tom Harrell, The Jazztet, The Timeless All Stars with Bobby Hutcheson, Curtis Fuller and Harold Land, Ira Sullivan and Red Rodney, Dexter and Johnny Griffin, etc. When a artist was working as a single they would often be backed by the classic Delmark rhythm section of Jodie Christian, Donald Garrett and Wilbur Campbell. There was Rick's Cafe American that had all of the Norman Granz acts like Dizzy, Oscar Peterson, Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Roy Eldridge, Zoot Sims, etc. Mr.Ricky's had all of the organ greats like Jimmy Smith and Jack McDuff. Von Freeman ran the Tuesday night session at the New Apartment Lounge down on 77th Street. Brad Goode started playing with Lin Halliday everywhere, then Eric Alexander moved to town. Bob Koester owned the Jazz Record Mart (the best jazz record store in the world) and used LP's were cheap. Count Basie, Buddy Rich, Woody Herman or Maynard's Band was always coming to town. There was always something swinging happening and fortunately for my brother and I, my dad took us to hear music all the time."


Blues and Cubes

Label: Flying Horse Records
Released: 2022
Track listing: Blue Lamp; Dora Maar; Les Demoiselles d’Avignon; Blue Steel; Segment; View of Heaven; Promenade aux Champs-Elysees; Promenade in Blue; Picasso’s Blue Lobster; The Iberian.


Article: Year in Review

Jack Bowers' Best Jazz Albums Of 2022

Read "Jack Bowers' Best Jazz Albums Of 2022" reviewed by Jack Bowers

As the Covid pandemic slowly recedes into America's rear-view mirror, jazz groups of all sizes and shapes have begun performing and recording again, making 2022 a rather good year over-all for fans and reviewers alike. New artists, new sounds and new approaches have combined to lend assurance that jazz remains in good hands and will continue ...

News: Event

A Misty Night for Dan Miller

A Misty Night for Dan Miller

Musician friends, family and friends, and students from near and far packed The Barrel Room at Twisted Vine Bistro in downtown Fort Myers on Thursday night, September 1, for a jazz night unlike any other the venue has seen. They were all there, standing room only through the first set, to celebrate the musical legacy of ...


News: Obituary

Dan Miller: A Life Well-Lived, And Then Some....

Dan Miller: A Life Well-Lived, And Then Some....

Someone's impact on others is a more meaningful measure of a life well-lived than the number of years they spend on the planet. That notion was reinforced today when we received word that Dan Miller died unexpectedly yesterday (Friday, August 19). He was just 53. Dan was passionate about a lot of things—auto racing and other ...


Article: Album Review

The Jazz Professors: Blues and Cubes

Read "Blues and Cubes" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Yes, the Florida-based Jazz Professors, as befits the name, are smart—but don't let that throw you. They also swing in the best jazz tradition, even though their fourth album, Blues and Cubes, was inspired by the art of Pablo Picasso. Unlike Picasso's works, however, there is scant abstraction here; the Professors embody far more bop than ...

News: Performance / Tour

Swinging jazz, no holds barred

Swinging jazz, no holds barred

The Dan Miller-Lew Del Gatto quartet's weekly gig at the Barrel Room in downtown Fort Myers FL always has a surprise or two, and the Thursday, May 26 edition was no exception. Drummer Jim White, a close friend and occasional band-mate of trumpeter Miller's since 1987 when they were freshmen at the University of North Texas ...


News: Performance / Tour

The joy and legacy of the Duke Ellington songbook

The joy and legacy of the Duke Ellington songbook

Duke Ellington's impact on jazz seems beyond measure, no matter how you count it. He wrote, co-wrote or took credit for writing more than 1,000 compositions over a 50-year span. According to one family bio, it was more than 3,000 songs. The numbers really don't matter as much as the imprint Duke left on the music. ...


News: Interview

A trumpeter’s legacy of paying it forward

A trumpeter’s legacy of paying it forward

The fine trumpeter Bobby Shew, now one of the horn’s elder statesmen, gave Dan Miller an unforgettable present on his protégé’s 30th birthday. As Miller recalls 22 years later, those sage words of wisdom went like this: “You don’t want to be a sideman all your life. You’re going to turn 50 years old and the ...


Article: Profile

Alan Rubin: Mr. Fabulous in Every Way

Read "Alan Rubin: Mr. Fabulous in Every Way" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello

In the Hebrew language, the ancient word “Rubin" translates as “Behold, a son!" Yes, Alan Rubin, trumpeter, actor, studio phenomenon, beloved friend, respected colleague, loving husband and soulmate to his wife, Mary, was something to behold. Many people—even non-musicians— remember Rubin as a stalwart member of the “Saturday Night Live" and Blues Brothers Bands and as ...


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