Joe Gransden and Maria Howell – Together Again!
One event on January 8, 2021 at 8:00 pm
One event on January 9, 2021 at 5:45 pm
One event on January 9, 2021 at 7:45 pm
Craft cocktails and small plates begin at 5:00 pm.
Seating includes the club & patio and is first-come at the door. Only Baby Grand Members qualify for preferred seating. Learn more about Middle C Jazz memberships: https://middlecjazz.com/tickets-memberships/#memberships
Trumpeter/vocalist moves forward in his promising career
Band leader Joe Gransden has performed worldwide and released 16 CDs under his own name. Renowned first for the hard bop approach of his trumpet, Gransden’s singing voice has been compared to that of Chet Baker and Frank Sinatra.
“When I first heard Joe nine years ago, I immediately thought of Chet,” says Jazziz magazine critic James Rozzi, “but lately his voice has taken on its own style with a deeper resonance. His trumpet has always alternated lyricism with an aggressive, angular approach. He has the ability to cover the gamut of emotions.”
Joe is from just north of Manhattan, New York. Coming from a family full of musicians, Joe’s introduction to music came early on through his father, a gifted singer and pianist. His grandfather was a trumpeter of merit, playing professionally his whole life throughout New York. On his mother’s side of the family was the piano virtuoso Carmen Cavallero.
“Music has been a part of my life as far back as I can remember,” says the unassuming Joe Gransden. “I can remember practicing with my father, and eventually him taking me along to sit in at jam sessions. Early on I developed a respect for individuals like my father whose lives revolved around music. While still in high school, I knew that music was the life I would choose.”
Not long after high school, Joe was on the road as a sideman with the big bands of Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller. A number of A.F.M. contracted sideman gigs include Barry White, The Moody Blues, Kenny Rogers, The Temptations, Aretha Franklin, The Whispers, etc. Eventually moving to New York City, he performed with numerous groups, including sub work with Toshiko Akiyoshi and Chico O’Farrill at the famous Birdland Jazz Club. Meanwhile, Joe formed his own group, which performed in Brooklyn each week and included the venerable guitarist Joe Cohn and ex-Betty Carter bassist, Matt Hughes. “Having my own group and being fortunate enough to travel, play, and record has been a dream come true,” says Joe.
“Exploring the music with a steady group of great players has enabled me to continually grow.” Joe Gransden growing legion of fans around the country have obviously taken note. In Atlanta, where Joe plays steadily 5-6 nights a week in as many venues, his loyal following includes an array of people from blue-collar workers to upper crust businessmen and businesswomen who all share a love of good music.
Like many developing jazzmen, Gransden’s early influences, which include Kenny Dorham and Miles Davis, were easily recognizable in his playing throughout his formative years. “Emulating the jazz greats is always the very first step,” says the historically-rooted Gransden. “But obviously, in order to be true to myself—who I am, pwhat I believe in, my family background—I need to have a sound that’s my own. It’s taken me until recently to hone in on that voice and explore its potential. One of the truly enjoyable things about my career has been finding that my audience appreciates my individual talents.”
A widening schedule has found Joe performing the 1st and 3rd Mondays of every month at Café 290 in Atlanta w/his 16 Piece Big Band , The Jazz Corner in Hilton Head, South Carolina, The Blue Note NYC, The Museum of Art and Design in midtown Manhattan, Spivey Hall in Atlanta, Ga and Tehema Golf Club in Carmel, California (where Joe regularly plays events for Clint Eastwood). Joe also just released his brand new Big Band cd entitled “Go Getta”! The title track was written for Joe by Kipper Jones and features saxophone great Kenny G!
Pick your copy up today on Joe’s website, ITUNES, CDBABY etc….
AS AN ACTOR, Maria Howell began her career in the 1985 Oscar-nominated film, “The Color Purple”, since then, she has appeared in hit TV shows such as Lifetime’s, “Army Wives”, and Marc Cherry’s, “Devious Maids”. Eric Kripke and J.J. Abrams’ apocalyptic, “Revolution”, and “Aquarius”, starring X-Files’ David Duchovny, both on NBC, and MTV’s, “Finding Carter”. Theatrical credits include, “The Blind Side”, “What To Expect When You’re Expecting”, “Addicted”, starring Sharon Leal and Boris Kodjoe, “The Good Lie”, “Hunger Games: Catching Fire” (as “Seeder”) and “Christmas Wedding Baby”, (as Miranda) by Award-Winning Writer/Director Kiara C. Jones. She also co-stars in Writer/Director, Shea Sizemore’s “The Next Day” (http://moments.org) and “Sons 2 The Grave”, a film directed by famed actor, Mykelti Williamson – best known as “Bubba” in “Forest Gump”. She recurred in Bounce TV’s, “Saints & Sinners” as Lt. Hawkins, and as Ms. Sumner is the Oscar-nominated, “Hidden Figures”, as well as a guest star appearance on CBS’s “Criminal Minds”.
A SONG STYLIST in her own right, Maria has shared the musical stage with such legendary artists as Nancy Wilson, George Benson, Ray Charles and Earl Klugh. After a very successful 6 year stint in Asia, Maria relocated back to the U.S. and performed at Sambuca Jazz Café for 9 consecutive years…2002 to its closing in December 2010. She and pianist Bill Wilson, (son of legendary jazz pianist Teddy Wilson), held the distinction of being the longest running act at the Atlanta location. Since then, she makes recurring appearances at well known jazz/supper clubs and festivals across the U.S., with music collaborator, the amazingly multi-talented, pianist/vocalist/arranger, Noel Freidline.
AS A VOICEOVER ARTIST, Maria also lends her voice to numerous TV and radio commercials, animation, video games, and audiobook narrations. She has voiced commercials and promos for McDonalds, Food Lion, Nike, FOX…narrated 8 books for NY Times Bestselling Author, Kymberla Lawson Roby…various video games, one being the character Tripwire in Minecraft: Story Mode, in addition to animation for Warner Brothers.
Maria is not only an actor and singer, but a very devoted supporter of 2 charities of choice, Students Without Mothers, where she has served as a Board Member for over 10 years, and Co-chair of its annual holiday benefit concert, which features her brainchild musical concept, “Girls in Gowns” – www.studentswithoutmothers.org and Ava’s Heart – www.avasheart.org – a non-profit charitable organization that provides critically needed assistance for transplant patients who are unable to access or afford insurance needs.
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