Born: March 25
Mimi Jones, multi talented bassist, vocalist and composer, brings her beacon of musical light to the world while embracing a positive future with her inspiring messages. Mimi’s elegant sound is an eclectic mix of genres based on a strong jazz foundation that leaves room for funky bass grooves, world beat rhythms, gentle textures and the soulful cries of the Wurlizter. “This music taps in directly to the senses using elements of jazz, folk, rock, blues and different sounds from around the world which have all had such a profound effect on me.”
Mimi Jones (aka Miriam Sullivan) was born in New York City and raised in the Bronx by parents that descended from Barbados and St.Croix, which explains why Mimi has so many musical influences that flow easily through her compositional style. “As a child my parents always played music around the house,” remarks Mimi, “besides their traditional roots they had tons of records from the greats like Gene Ammons, Miles Davis, James Brown, Gloria Lynn, Ray Charles, John Coltrane, Willie Nelson, Frank Sinatra, The Doors, Beatles, BeeGees, Barbara Streisand, Al Green, Michael Jackson, Earth Wind & Fire, Peter Paul and Mary. Every Sunday we had a ritual of cleaning while the music blasted through the house.” Mimi started buying her own records and showed such enthusiasm to play the guitar that her father enrolled her in the Harlem School of the Arts. There she learned the classical guitar and eventually the instrument of her choice, the electric guitar. By the age of twelve she was studying guitar with her first teacher, Jim Bartow, taking classes in dance, chorus, drums, music theory, piano and composition which all helped her secure a spot at Fiorello La Guardia High School of Music and Performing Arts. Once there she realized that the school didn’t have a guitar program so she was quickly switched to cello and placed into the orchestra. However, during cello practice time she could be found in the mirror spinning her comrade's bass and playing the “Barney Miller” theme. “I was spotted doing this one afternoon by the band director, Justin Diccioccio, and he asked if I played the bass. I said no and he responded saying “well you do now because we need a bassist for the jazz band.” “This was an exciting experience because for the first time I found my own musical voice.”
Mimi began her relationship with the bass by receiving classical lessons from Linda McKnight and attending the Jazz Mobile Workshop to study with world-class bassist Lisle Atkinson who became her first mentor and even supplied Mimi with her first bass, a Juzak. “I’ve often said that the bass chose me,” said Mimi “and there were so many early experiences that confirmed that feeling.”...
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“...makes magic sounds on the bass.” —Eric Jackson, Panama News
“She has developed a style that is smooth, sure, uncomplicated but with a sensuous touch.” —Norman Munroe, Jamaica Observer