CLS: The Blues Journey
Join jazz artist Chris Coles as he explores the experience of the Blues journey through the 19th Century to today. Discover how one genre that grew out of storytelling, became the foundation for almost everything of the Popular music experience in performance, composition, and culture. From those days of the front porch storytellers to today’s artists in sold-out stadium shows, follow the story of the Blues and its impact on the global music scene.
About Chris Coles…
Christopher J. Coles is a graduate of Cleveland South High School (2004). In 2009 Chris received his bachelor’s degree in Saxophone Performance from Youngstown State University. It was here that he studied with world-renowned saxophonist and educator Dr. James C. Umble, jazz saxophonist Dr. Kent Englehardt, and jazz bassist and composer Dr. David Morgan. In 2012, Chris received his master’s degree in Saxophone Performance from the University of Akron.
Chris has performed with many local and international jazz musicians such as, Eddie Baccus Sr., Melvin Burks, Kenny Davis, Glenn Holmes, Bill Ransom, and Cecil Rucker, Grammy Award winner Slide Hampton, Ralph Lalama, Sean Jones, Dominick Farinacci, Maria Schneider (guest conductor for The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra) and Allen Vizzutti. Coles recently was accepted to perform in Italy with the Ohio Youth Jazz Orchestra. It was here that Coles performed with Wessell Anderson, former lead alto saxophonist for the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra.
Chris also played at the North American Saxophone Alliance Regional Festival in West Virginia with the Dana Saxophone quartet, performing at the International Saxophone Symposium in Washington D.C., and premiering a commissioned work by John Hollenbeck at the Whitney Art Museum Composers Workshop. Coles also recorded this work on John Hollenbeck’s album Rainbow Jimmies released in 2009. Some of Chris’s recent accomplishments include being a participant at The Banff Workshop for Jazz and Creative music in Alberta, Canada. It was there that Chris had the distinct honor of studying with some of the great pioneers in jazz today such as Vijay Iyer, Mark Turner, Imani Izuri, Tia Fuller, Billy Hart, Ingrid Jensen, Zakir Hussain, Somi, Yosvany Terry, and Miles Okazaki to name a few. In 2017 Chris was an awardee of the Knight Arts Challenge in Akron, Ohio and in 2018 Chris won grants from GAR Foundation as well as the Cleveland foundation for his multimedia work Nine Lives. This 40-minute work preimered in 2019. Chris is currently based out of Akron, Ohio and is on faculty at Oberlin Conservatory, The University of Akron, and The Tri-C Creative Arts Jazzfest Academy. Chris is a Yamaha Performing Artist.
See Chautauqua Jazz Week Experience for more information about events happening throughout the week.
Lakeside’s Jazz Week is made possible by the Ohio Arts Council’s 2022 Arts Resiliency Initiative Community grant. The Ohio Arts Council is funded in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature. The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally and economically.