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03/03 8:00 PM & 10:30PM - $30.00

Keystone Korner Nights presents:

NICHOLAS PAYTON XXX

featuring LENNY WHITE & VICENTE ARCHER

CELEBRATING THE RELEASE OF HIS NEW LIVE RECORDING

Nicholas Payton

Nicholas Payton is the embodiment of every great trumpet player who came before him, and he leads the way for all who follow. Hailed as a virtuoso before he was even out of high school, his maturation as a prodigious talent has earned him praise as one of the most important artists of our time.

In 1994, Nicholas Payton made his recording debut as a leader with From This Moment (Verve), where he was immediately recognized as a “young lion”. Since then, Payton has consistently committed himself to developing a distinct voice beyond the strict labels that fans and critics alike have sought to pin on him.

He says: “As a musician, as an artist, you’re always trying to zero in on the bull’s eye as a means of becoming a better version of yourself. I’ve been able to find the kind of music that’s more inclusive of all of my life. The approach and the ideas of my music have become more singular, more cohesive. I have no agenda in terms of a specific genre or style, only to be true to who I am.”

Nicholas Payton was born September 26, 1973, in New Orleans, Louisiana, into a musical family. Encouraged by his mother, a pianist and vocalist, and his father the legendary bassist, composer and educator Walter Payton, Nicholas showed talent for music at a very early age. He received his first trumpet at age four and by age nine was sitting-in with local bands including the Young Tuxedo Brass Band. By the age of 12 he was a member of the All Star Brass Band that performed and toured extensively. As he grew up and studied, Nicholas successfully learned how to play several instruments including but not limited to the trumpet. He is an accomplished pianist, bassist, drummer, and plays tuba, trombone, clarinet and saxophone, et al. During his high school years, Payton attended the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts to study with Clyde Kerr Jr. and after graduation attended the University of New Orleans where he studied with Harrold Battiste and  Ellis Marsalis.

As a leader, he has recorded: From This Moment (1994, Verve); Gumbo Nouveau (1995, Verve); Payton’s Place (1998, Verve); Nick@Night (1999, Verve); Dear Louis (2001, Verve); Sonic Trance (2003, Warner Bros.); Into The Blue (2008, Nonesuch); Bitches (2011, In+Out Records); and 1997’s GRAMMY® award-winning collaboration with Doc Cheatham, the legendary trumpeter, entitled Doc Cheatham & Nicholas Payton (1997, Verve). 

Spanning a multitude of musical genres, he has arranged for, performed, and or recorded with his own groups in many settings, including duo, trio, quartet, quintet, 21-piece big band, and culminating in his 2012 full symphony orchestral work, The Black American Symphony.

Significant collaborations include: Allen Toussaint, Clark Terry, Daniel Lanois, Dr. John, Elvin Jones, Herbie Hancock, Jill Scott, Joe Henderson, Marcus Roberts, Marianne Faithful, Dr. Michael White, Nancy Wilson, Poncho Sanchez, Ray Brown, Ray Charles, Roy Haynes, Stanley Jordan, Trey Anastasio, Wayne Shorter, Wynton Marsalis, Zigaboo Modeliste and many more.  Nicholas is credited on over 120 recordings as a composer, arranger, special guest or sideman, including Cassandra Wilson’s GRAMMY® award-winning album, Loverly.

Nicholas has performed at major concert halls and festivals around the world, such as Carnegie Hall, Hollywood Bowl, Disney Hall, Royce Hall, Orchestra Hall (Chicago), Apollo Theater, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, Avery Fischer Hall, Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), Madison Square Garden, Cite de la Musique (Paris), Brevard North Carolina Music Festival, Barbican Theater (London), Vienna State Opera House, Smetana Hall (Prague), among many others.

Television and Film credits include: Kansas City (Dir. Robert Altman); HBO Treme Season 2 and Season 3 (‘Concentric Circles’ & ‘Lil’ Dukes Strut’: Featured music); Icons Among Us Documentary; The Grammy Awards; The Tonight Show; The Tonight Show Brazil; and EBS TV, Korea.

Nicholas Payton is also a founding Member of the San Francisco Jazz Collective (2004 – 2006) and The Blue Note 7, a septet formed in honor of the 70th anniversary of Blue Note Records. The group recorded an album in 2008, entitled Mosaic, which was released on Blue Note Records/EMI, and toured the United States from January until April 2009.

Currently, Nicholas Payton a Distinguished Artist and Visiting Lecturer at Tulane University for the 2011 – 2012 academic year and have been invited to return for the 2012-2013 academic year.  He has also taught master classes, clinics, and workshops at over 40 institutions, including Berkelee College of Music, Connecticut Forum (with Beverly Sills, Bobby Weir and Trey Anastasio), Cornell University, Institute of Superior Arts, Havana, Cuba, Loyola University, Northwestern University, Oberlin College & Conservatory, Skidmore College, Stanford University, Thelonious Monk Institute, et. al.

If it sounds like Nicholas Payton is a genius musician, a gifted composer and producer, a skilled astute writer and sometime social provocateur, and a shrewd businessman, he is all that, and more. His craft and artistry defy all restrictions leaving little that he cannot do and so it’s clear that Nicholas is rooted in more than just traditions.