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Knoxville Jazz Orchestra

When trumpeter, arranger and composer Vance Thompson called the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra’s first rehearsal in August of 1999, he had no way of knowing the extent to which this experience would shape the next two decades of his life. Thompson had just returned home to East Tennessee after a four year stint in Chicago, and was anxious to find a way to continue writing for and playing in a pro-caliber big band. Bands of this type had been plentiful in Chicago, but there was no such outlet in Knoxville at the time. “When I looked around and thought about the players that were in the area, I realized we had enough guys to have a high quality band,” said Thompson

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Knoxville Jazz Orchestra: A Year in the Life of the Band...

Read "A Year in the Life of the Band..." reviewed by Jack Bowers

As the great Sinatra once sang, “It was a very good year...” While 2001 was hardly trouble-free for the Knoxville (TN) Jazz Orchestra, the band was able to raise enough money during that time to underwrite a two-week European tour. The KJO appeared at France’s Jazz à Vienne and Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival and was able ...

The Music of Donald Brown

Label: KJO
Released: 2001
Track listing: Used to Think She Was Quiet; Strangers in Paradise; Waltz for Monk; Back Down in Lu Easy Anna; The Thing about Harold Mabern; Shade Street; Dearest Emily; Episode from a Village Dance

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Knoxville Jazz Orchestra: The Music of Donald Brown

Read "The Music of Donald Brown" reviewed by Dave Nathan

Established in August of 1999, the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra is made up of professional musicians from the Mid South region. Led by trumpeter Vance Thompson, the group's maiden album is a series of live performances made in 2000. All but two of the compositions on this set are by Donald Brown, “Shade Street" and “Dearest Emily" ...


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