Nocturne is proud to present a special residency series based upon the dynamic, original works of Dr. Ben Markley. Joined by drummer Dr. Brian Claxton and bassist Matt Smiley, Ben will be presenting compositions that pay homage to (and draw heavy inspiration from) Bud Powell, Barry Harris, Cedar Walton, McCoy Tyner and Chick Corea.
Accomplished pianist, band leader and composer/arranger Ben Markley is active throughout the entire Rocky Mountain front range. Ben (an ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Award Winner) has performed with Brian Lynch, Greg Osby, Eddie Henderson, Terell Stafford, George Garzone, and John Fedchock and many others. Markley's latest big band recording project Clockwise - The Music of Cedar Walton (OA2 records) earned a coveted four-star review by Downbeat Magazine in Spring of 2017. Markley currently serves as Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Wyoming where he directs and coaches a number of Jazz ensembles and teaches applied jazz piano, improvisation and is the director of the UW Jazz Festival.
Matt Smiley is a bassist and composer based in Denver, CO who has performed in a variety of musical situations including classical music, gospel, rock, funk, bluegrass, jazz, and free improvisation. Smiley has performed internationally at the Montreux, North Sea and Montreal Jazz festivals and premièred John Hilliard’s 2nd Piano Concerto at the Kennedy Center. Smiley relocated from Virginia to Colorado where he received a master's degree in music with an emphasis in jazz studies at the University of Northern Colorado. While at UNC Smiley won the UNC Jazz Composer’s Award for an original composition titled “Double Quartet"
Dr. Brian Claxton is a professional musician and educator living in the front-range area who performs frequently throughout Colorado as a drummer, and bassist. Claxton Claxton also teaches percussion and drum set at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood and drum set at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley. While a graduate student at UNC, Claxton was honored to be recruited by jazz legend Monty Alexander to play in his Harlem Kingston Express Band at the recommendation of jazz legend Jeff Hamilton. Claxton has also had the distinct pleasure share the stage with: Donny McCaslin, Chris Potter, Christian McBride, Dave Douglas, Terrell Stafford, Nicholas Payton, John Fedchock, Jiggs Whiggham, Cyrus Chestnut, Wayne Bergeron, Eric Marienthal, Dave Weckl, Bobby Sanabria, Greg Gisbert, Jon Faddis, Kenni Holmen, and many more.
$5 per guest artist fee