|M.J. WILLIAMS, vocalist, trombone player and Montana native plays both locally and regionally. She has co-founded several bands and trios, and has performed at festivals such as the New York City Women in Jazz Festival, the Bellevue Jazz Festival and the Bumbershoot Jazz Festival. She has produced a standards album, By All Means (1987), and co-produced two trio albums, What We Had in Mind (1996) and Taking the Hook (1997). A fourth album, I Can Hear Your Heart, is her latest release (1999).
Pianist ANN TAPPAN grew up in New York where she started playing the piano at age four. After studying jazz composition and arranging in college, she studied with ECM pianist Art Lande, later becoming an instructor at this school in Berkeley. In 1993 she migrated to Montana where she both performs and teaches music. Since coming to Montana she has recorded four CDs with the groups Threeform, Springhill, and MJ Williams Trio. She has performed widely in the Northwest including concerts at the Bumbershoot Arts Festival and Jazz Alley in Seattle.
Montana native KELLY ROBERTY, acoustic bassist, has performed, toured or recorded with an unbelievable list of the music world's greatest. From Peter Gabriel and Dion Warwick to Tommy Flanagan, Eddie Harris, Ray Anderson, David Murray, and everyone in between. Having toured internationally for over a decade he has performed in almost every major jazz venue. As a composer and arranger he has dozens of recordings to his credit. His recent projects include teaching his own unique vision of improvisation in individual and workshop settings.
R E V I E W S
"Williams has a mature mezzo and distinct ability to bend any not blue, whether singing or on her horn." 5/4 Magazine, Seattle
"M.J. Williams, a really fine scat-singer, with a Susannah McCorkle delivery style, has the right stuff to break through to the big time." JazzScene Magazine, Portland
"Ann is not just another endangered jazz species from Montana. She displays superb phrasing and a Shearing-like minimalist style." JazzScene Magazine, Portland
"Tappan proves what a short step it is for her to move into uncharted terrain." JazzNow Magazine, San Francisco
"An original and soulful improvisor with chops almost unheard of until now." St. Louis Post Dispatch
"Earthy and meticulous bassist whose lines underpin the ensemble with deep roots and flair…an heir apparent to the late Charles Mingus." LA Reader
Jan. 15 Benny's Bistro duo w/ Rennan Rieke, bass 6:30-8:30
Jan. 22 Valley Bank Annual Banquet Quintet
Jan. 28 Townsent, MT School, Humanities Presentation on Jazz
Jan.29 Archie Bray Foundation, Art Opening Reception Duo w/Blackie Nelson, guitar
Feb. 6 Montana Club -Quartet, 6:00p-10:00p MT Historical Society Celebration
Feb. 11 Holter Museum Jazz and Just Desserts Quintet with High School Jazz Bands, 7:00p-9:00p
Feb. 19 Benny's Bistro duo w/Rennan Rieke, bass
Feb. 26 Staggering Ox, Quartet, 6:00p-9:00p
April 5 Fairgrounds Empty Bowls Benefit Concert 6:00-8:00p. Quintet w/Sarah Elkins, Vocals.
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