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Coltrane Birthday Show

Sep 23, 2017

Coltrane Birthday Show feat. John Gunther, Heath Walton, Brad Shepik, John Hadfield & Tom Amend


John Gunther is a composer and multi-instrumentalist playing Saxophones, Clarinet, and Flute. With a restless musical spirit, he explores all forms of jazz from traditional to avant-garde as well as classical music, world music and experimental electronic music. He has performed or recorded with Dave Douglas, Ron Miles, Christian McBride, Bobby Watson, Wallace Roney, Larry Goldings,Tom Harrel, Dewey Redman, Joe Williams, The Woody Herman Orchestra, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and The Maria Schneider Orchestra.

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Heath Walton's passion for improvisation and jazz has taken him all over the US, receiving a Bachelor of Music in music performance from the University of Colorado in 2003, and a Master of the Arts in jazz studies from New York University in 2007. Living in New York City for seven years Heath Walton studied with George Garzone, Lenny Pickett, John Scofield, Jean-Michel Pilc, Brian Lynch, Tony Moreno, and Ralph Alessi to name a few.


Heath Walton ultimately relocated back to Colorado and graduated with his Doctorate in Music in 2016 - he currently teaches at CU Boulder, teaches privately, gigs nationally and locally, and helps his wife to raise two wonderful children.

John Hadfield is a percussionist, drummer, composer and bandleader (Trio of Myths and the Saints of Percussion). John’s unique ability to cross genres has allowed him to appear with a broad range of ensembles and artists, including: Yo-Yo Ma, Kinan Azmeh’s City Band, Petros Klampanis’ Contextual, Nguyen Le’s STREAMS Quartet, The Saturday Night Live Band on NBC, Deep Purple, and The Silk Road Ensemble.

John has released two albums of his own compositions: The Eye of Gordon and Displaced. In his compositional work, John integrates improvisation and structure, while combining a variety of musical styles, including jazz, classical Western music, Carnatic music, and electronic music. His compositions involve a wide range of percussion sounds—from the traditional jazz drum set to the classical Indian kanjira, the African kalimba, as well as random objects such as bicycle wheels, pieces of metal, or ventilation tubes John’s work has received significant critical acclaim. John currently serves on the Jazz faculty of New York University, where he teaches drum set and the World Percussion Ensemble. John Hadfield has played alongside Lenny Pickett, Kenny Werner, Billy Drewes, Nguyen Le, Adam Rudolph, Ghalia Benali, Greg Osby, Gil Goldstein, Bobby Watson, Gilad Hekselman, Jean-Michel Pilc, Bridget Kibbey, Kristin Le, Brad Shepik, Mark Helias, Chris Jennings, François Rabbath, and Erik Friedlander.

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Guitarist, composer, educator Brad Shepik has recorded 9 albums with his groups Brad Shepik Organ Trio, Brad Shepik Quartet, Brad Shepik Trio, Human Activity Quintet, Brad Shepik and the Commuters. Since 1995 his ensembles have performed at major festivals and clubs across Europe and North America including The North Sea Jazz Festival, Garda Jazz Festival, Cologne Biennale Jazz Festival, Toulouse Jazz Festival, Bell Atlantic Festival, Verizon, Earshot, Caramoor Jazz Festival, Langnau Jazz Festival, Groningen, Salzburg, Jerez, Cadiz, Sevilla, American Guitar Festival, Leeds, Rochester Jazz Festival, Cork, Brussels, Edgefest and others.

He currently performs solo concerts and with Brad Shepik Organ Trio, The Brad Shepik Quartet, Rambler, Combo Nuvo, Tom Beckham/Brad Shepik Duo, Balkan Peppers, Jamie Baum Septet, Matt Darriau's Paradox Trio, George Schuller's Circle Wide, Arthur Kell and others. He teaches Theory, Improvisation, World Ensemble, Jazz Combo, Chicago Blues, Balkan Music and private guitar at New York University and private guitar at New England Conservatory and City College of New York.