Eric DeFade / Paul Thompson / Thomas Wendt (U.S.)Friday, July 7, 2017 @ 8 p.m.
Join us for Celebrating Sonny Rollins’ Freedom Suite & More, a concert featuring the jazz talents of Eric DeFade, Paul Thompson and Thomas Wendt.
Eric DeFade is in demand as a performing artist and studio musician. He has toured internationally with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, the Artie Shaw Big Band, and has led his own combo in Tokyo. Mr. DeFade has played with Nancy Wilson, Rosemary Clooney, New York Voices, Roger Humphries, John Scofield, Dave Liebman, and has been a featured soloist for the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. Currently, Mr. DeFade is participating in concerts and workshops for the Pennsylvania Arts On Tour Program and filming a series of music specials for public television. He uses a pragmatic approach to understanding the jazz language while emphasizing sound, improvisation concepts, and versatility.
Paul Thompson is proud to have been a part of Pittsburgh’s jazz community for over 20 years. He can be seen performing locally with Roger Humphries, Sean Jones, Salsamba, OPEK, the Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra, and many others. In addition to sharing the bandstand with such greats as Milt Jackson, Jon Faddis, Marlena Shaw, and Geri Allen, Paul was bassist/musical director for trumpeter Maynard Ferguson as well as playing bass in saxophonist Stanley Turrentine’s last touring group. Paul is an adjunct music teacher at his alma mater: Pittsburgh CAPA 6-12 Performing Arts School, as well as being a guest artist/lecturer at West Virginia University and West Virginia Weslyan College.
Thomas Wendt has been playing the drums professionally since the age of 14. A graduate of The Pittsburgh High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, he has studied with master drummers Roger Humphries, Joe Harris, and Kenny Washington. Thomas maintains a busy freelancing schedule with Pittsburgh’s top jazz artists such as Dwayne Dolphin, Joe Negri, Sean Jones, Dave & Maureen Budway, Kenia, the Latin jazz group, Salsamba, and the newly re-formed Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra. He has also played with many visiting international artists like David “Fathead” Newman, Donald Byrd, James Moody, Jimmy Heath, Clark Terry, Benny Golson, Freddy Cole, Monty Alexander, Bill Watrous, Paquito D’Rivera, Curtis Lundy, Wycliffe Gordon, and Javon Jackson. In 2008, Thomas played on the Emmy Award winning soundtrack for the PBS documentary, “Fly Boys” and in 2010 he recorded an album featuring trombonists Jay Ashby and Steve Davis. Thomas has also recorded albums with Gene Ludwig, Sandy Staley, Salsamba, David and Maureen Budway, and Joe Negri. Recently, he appeared at The 2012 Litchfield Jazz Festival with jazz legend Hubert Laws and in 2013 performed with pianist Alan Broadbent for the Nyack NY Library Concert Series. Thomas has been on the faculty at the Afro-American Music Institute in Homewood since 1998 and in 2014/15 taught drumset fundamentals at Duquesne University.