The music of the trio takes root African American songs, sampling spirituals and work songs and inherently making international connections. Between sets, these musicians will also collaborate with Osama Alomar, Lauren Russell, Jenny Johnson and Javier Zamora for a jazz and poetry interlude.
Jaimeo Brown Drums and electronics www.jaimeobrown.com
Jaimeo Brown (pronounced jah-mayo) began his drum career at age 16 with his father bassist Dartanyan Brown and mother pianist and woodwind specialist, Marcia Miget, and drum teacher, Sly Randolph, himself a Bernard Purdie protégé from Harlem. In the last 20 years, he has worked with a range of musicians including Stevie Wonder, Carlos Santana, Q-Tip, Carl Craig, Bobby Hutcherson, Greg Osby, Joe Locke, David Murray, and several other New York based musicians. He gained extensive experience performing and educating various audiences around the world as an ambassador for the US State Department. In addition to onstage work, Jaimeo contributed program material for the Oscar and Grammy award winning documentary ‘Twenty Feet From Stardom’ and the PBS original production of Ralph Ellison’s ‘King of the Bingo Game.’ As the Director of Transcending Arts, Jaimeo is a passionate educator. He has given countless hours in community service in urban NJ and NY giving lessons to kids through programs such as NJPAC, New City Kids.
Chris Sholar Guitar and electronics https://www.chrissholar.com/about
Producer Chris Sholar is one of the most in-demand guitar players in the world of Hip-hop and R&B. He has worked with the top names in the music industry ranging from Kanye West to Stevie Wonder. In 2001 he graduated William Paterson University with a B.A. degree in music. Later that year he began touring with Q-tip (A Tribe Called Quest) as guitarist and musical director.
“Playing for Q-tip was like earning my degree in Hip Hop Music”.
As a young budding musician Chris caught the attention of legendary music producer Jus Blaze. Working with Jus gave Chris the opportunity to write, produce and record for major artists such as Ne-Yo, Mariah Carey, Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg. Soon after Chris produced European international artists Max Herre and Joy Denalane. Max’s album debuted #1 on the billboard charts. A list of artists that Chris Sholar has worked with: Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Kanye West, Jack White, Solange, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z, T.I, Anderson .Paak, Frank Ocean, Snoop Dogg, Q-Tip, Stevie Wonder, Jazmine Sullivan, Ne-Yo, Whitney Houston, Robert Glasper, D’angelo, John Legend, Common, Raphael Saadiq, Mary J Blige, Lalah Hathaway, Gregory Porter, Anthony Hamilton, Grace, Aaradhna, Alice Smith,The Dream, Busta Rhymes, Mos Def, Jus Blaze, Rodney Jerkins, Dr. Dre, Fonzworth Bently, A Tribe Called Quest.
Jaleel Shaw – alto sax and electronics https://www.jaleelshaw.com/welcome/
Alto & Soprano saxophonist, Jaleel Shaw, won the 2014 Downbeat Critics Poll’s for Rising Star Alto Saxophonist. He is a longtime member of the Roy Haynes Quartet, Tom Harrell’s “Colors Of A Dream” and has performed with Christian McBride, Jason Moran, the Mingus Big Band, Pat Metheny, Stefon Harris, Roy Hargrove, Chick Corea, Dave Holland, Jimmy Cobb and several others. Born and raised in Philadelphia, PA, Shaw picked up the alto saxophone and surrounded himself with music at an early age. Immersing himself in the local jazz scene, he studied and performed with many of the city’s great musicians and educators and, following high school, received a full-tuition scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, where he received a dual degree in Music Education and Performance. While at Berklee, Shaw was awarded the Billboard Endowed Scholarship for Outstanding Academic and Musical achievement (1998), Woodwind Department Chair Awards (1998 & 2000), The Boston Jazz Society Award (1999) and The Outstanding Student Teacher Award (2000). He later received a scholarship to Manhattan School of Music in New York, where he obtained a Masters Degree in Jazz Performance.
Javier Zamora was born in La Herradura, El Salvador, in 1990. He holds a BA from the University of California, Berkeley, where he studied and taught in June Jordan’s Poetry for the People program Zamora earned an MFA from New York University and is currently a 2016–2018 Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. He is the recipient of scholarships to the Bread Loaf, Frost Place, Napa Valley, Squaw Valley, and VONA writers’ conferences and fellowships from CantoMundo, Colgate University (Olive B. O’Connor), MacDowell Colony, Macondo Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Saltonstall Foundation, and Yaddo. In 2016, Barnes & Noble granted him the Writer for Writers Award for his work with the Undocupoets Campaign. He was also the winner of the Ruth Lilly/Dorothy Sargent Fellowship and is a member of the Our Parents’ Bones Campaign, whose goal is to bring justice to the families of the ten thousand disappeared during El Salvador’s civil war.
Born in Damascus, Syria in 1968 and now living in Chicago, Osama Alomar is one of the most well-respected Arabic poets writing today, and a prominent practitioner of the Arabic al-qisa al-qasira jiddan, the “very short story.” He is the author of Fullblood Arabian in English, and three collections of short stories and a volume of poetry in Arabic. Alomar’s first full-length collection of stories, The Teeth of the Comb, will be published by New Directions in April 2017. His short stories have been published by Newyorker.com, Noon, Conjunctions.com, The Coffin Factory, Electric Literature, and The Literary Review. He also performs as a musician. Osama Alomar travels with his translator, Christian Collins.
Jenny Johnson is the author of In Full Velvet, published by Sarabande Books in 2017. Her honors include a 2015 Whiting Award and a 2016-17 Hodder Fellowship at Princeton University. She has also received awards and scholarships from the Blue Mountain Center, Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and Yaddo. Her poems have appeared in The New York Times, New England Review, Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics, and elsewhere. After earning a BA/MT in English Education from the University of Virginia, she taught public school for several years in San Francisco, and she spent ten summers on the staff of the UVA Young Writer’s Workshop. She earned an MFA in Poetry from Warren Wilson College. She is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at West Virginia University, and she is on the faculty of the Rainier Writing Workshop, Pacific Lutheran University’s low-residency MFA program.
Lauren Russell is the author of What’s Hanging on the Hush (Ahsahta Press, 2017). A 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellow in Poetry, she has also received support from Cave Canem, The Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, VIDA / The Home School, the Rose O’Neill Literary House, the Millay Colony, and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Her chapbook Dream-Clung, Gone came out from Brooklyn Arts Press in 2012, and her work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, boundary 2, The Brooklyn Rail, jubilat, and Bettering American Poetry 2015, among others. She is a research assistant professor and is assistant director of the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics at the University of Pittsburgh.
Tina Chang was raised in New York City. She is the first female to be named Poet Laureate of Brooklyn and is the author of the collections of poetry Hybrida (2019), Of Gods & Strangers (2011), and Half-Lit Houses (2004). She is also the co-editor of the W.W. Norton anthology Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from the Middle East, Asia, and Beyond (2008). She is the recipient of awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts, Academy of American Poets, Poets & Writers, the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, and the Van Lier Foundation among others. She teaches poetry at Sarah Lawrence College and she is also a member of the international writing faculty at the City University of Hong Kong.