VIC FIRTH ARTIST
JEFF JONES

Jeff Jones, Professor of Percussion at the University of Bridgeport in Bridgeport, Connecticut, comes from a diverse musical background that began in his hometown of Gardner, Massachusetts. The highlight of his activities in Gardner was his participation in the All-Eastern Symphony Orchestra in 1999 – an experience that included working with renowned conductors Kurt Mazur and Benjamin Zander, culminating in a performance at Carnegie Hall.

In 2005, Jeff completed his Bachelor of Music degree cum laude at the University of Massachusetts, studying with Brazilian-born marimba virtuoso Eduardo Leandro. He was awarded the Chancellor’s Talent Award in Music, a full-tuition scholarship, and maintained a double concentration in music education and performance throughout his undergraduate studies. During his first two years at UMass, Jeff was a member of the Minuteman Marching Band, under the tutelage of renowned drum corps educator Thom Hannum. He was also a member of numerous percussion ensembles and jazz bands. In 2002, Jeff performed with Grammy winners Paul Winter and Jeff Holmes in Mr. Winter’s “Concert for the Earth II.” The following year, during UMass’s Day of Percussion, hosted by the Massachusetts chapter of the Percussive Arts Society, Jeff performed alongside Jonathan Haas in Mr. Haas’s “Carter Cartel,” a masterclass featuring Elliott Carter’s timpani repertoire. As a member of the UMass Jazz Studio Orchestra, Jeff was a recipient of a 2004 Downbeat Student Music Award.

In 2007, he completed his Master of Music degree at the Yale School of Music under the tutelage of world-renowned percussionist Robert van Sice. His activities at Yale included his winning the Yale School of Music Chamber Music Competition performing Steve Reich’s Proverb, numerous concerts at Carnegie Hall and Symphony Hall, and a U.S. tour with the prestigious Yale Percussion Group, including a performance of James Wood’s Village Burial with Fire at the 2006 Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Austin, Texas. Jeff's first recording is of Philippe Manoury's Le Livre des Claviers with Eduardo Leandro on Resource Records. Jeff lives in New Haven with his wife, Beth, and their son, Wiley.

 

PERFORMANCE SPOTLIGHT:

 Third Construction by John Cage
 

Written in 1941 for percussion quartet, Third Construction by John Cage is one of the premier percussion compositions of the 20th century. Check out a performance of this piece by Svet Stoyanov, John Daub, Josh Quillen and Jeff Jones of the Yale Percussion Group.

 
 Figures in a Landscape for flute and marimba by Peter Klatzow
 

Featuring Jeff Jones on marimba and Jennifer Chen on flute.

 Rogosanti by James Wood
 

Jeff Jones, percussion.

 "Day Dreams" for marimba and electronics by Philippe Boesmans
 

In Day Dreams for marimba and electronics, Philippe Boesmans has created a uniquely broad palette of timbres by devising a collaboration between marimba sounds and computer-generated sounds. Through the use of a program called Max/MSP, Boesmans uses electronics to serve one of three purposes: to complement the marimba line with a secondary line of music; to compete with the marimba line by pushing itself to the foreground; and to actually bend the pitch of the marimba, certainly a pushing of the envelope for keyboard percussion.

The use of the Daydreams software was freely granted to Jeff Jones by the CRFMW - Centre de Recherches et de Formation Musicales de Wallonie, Liège, Belgium.

The current version of the Daydreams computer technology was designed and implemented by Robert Esler.

 

Jeff's Implements of Choice:
Robert Van Sice Signature Mallets
Robert Van Sice Signature Keyboard
Very soft. For a warm‚ round sound that is perfect for low register chorales.
L = 17"
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Robert Van Sice Signature Keyboard
Soft. Produces a broad sound with tremendous projections that is dark‚ but not muffled.
L = 17"
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Robert Van Sice Signature Keyboard
Medium soft. A general mallet that covers the lower four octaves of the marimba.
L = 17"
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Robert Van Sice Signature Keyboard
Medium. The most popular model in the series‚ this mallet covers the entire range of the marimba and produces a singing sound that is full of life.
L = 17"
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Robert Van Sice Signature Keyboard
Medium hard. Bright‚ but not to the point of "xylophone-like" brilliance.
L = 17"
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Robert Van Sice Signature Keyboard
Hard. When extreme cutting power and a sharp edge are required.
L = 17"
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