Born: 1957 Primary Instrument: Piano
Jazz Pianist and composer BRUCE DUDLEY has performed at Jazz Festivals in Canada and the United States since 1974 when he was the featured “Young Talent” winner at the Wichita Jazz Festival. Since then he has performed across Canada and throughout the United States in clubs, concerts, and festivals including the Houston International Festival, Vancouver Jazz Festival, Jazz in June, Calgary Jazz Festival, Edmonton Jazz Festival, and Corpus Christi Jazz Festival. Dudley has performed with Herb Ellis, Marvin Stamm, Eddie Daniels, Chester Thompson, Jamie Baum, and many others. He was the pianist for the Middle Tennessee Jazz Orchestra with whom he has performed with Randy Brecker, Eric Alexander, Kenny Werner, Scott Robinson, Jim McNeely, Tim Hagens, and the Sacred Music Concert of Duke Ellington.
Dudley is currently on the faculty of Commercial Music at Belmont University and is adjunct instructor of jazz piano at Vanderbilt University. Dudley previously held positions at Middle Tennessee State University, San Jacinto College in Houston, and St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia
Dudley’s own groups include a jazz septet and a jazz trio plus string quartet, for which his arrangements and compositions have received rave reviews. His recordings include his trio CD “Semblance” and his wife, jazz singer Sandra Dudley’s CD “Close To You”. Dudley is sought after not only as a pianist but as a clinician as well. He has conducted clinics on jazz improvisation in Canada and the U.S. at universities including Brigham Young University, Western Washington State University, Tennessee State University, Eastman School of Music, Houston Community Colleges, Humber College, University of Saskatoon, University of Alabama and others.
As a composer, Dudley has received commissions from Meet the Composer, The Commission Project, The Canadian Saxophone Quintet, East Nashville Center for the Creative Arts, and Murfreesboro Youth Orchestra.
He can range from a strong two-handed approach to a sensitive lyricism, and seems to share a characteristic with the late great Bill Evans: both hands always seem to be in perfect balance, which gives every note a harmonic richness making repeated listening a pleasure. TENNESSEE JAZZ AND BLUES NEWS
Dudley’s well-schooled piano style is guided by dominant but subtle right-hand figures that galvanize one of the most cohesive trios in town. THE NASHVILLE SCENE
Dudley plays the piano with such grace and authority that he has quietly become the pianists that other pianists go to hear. HOUSTON POST
The Bruce Dudley Trio serves up a rich jazz plate when they perform. Pianist Bruce Dudley has both the taste and the chops to cover the likes of Duke Ellington and other jazz masters. THE TENNESSEAN
Dudley, whose fluent lines jet around the keyboard, absorbing motifs into the stream, without a split second of hesitation, at any point of rhythm in the bar, are stunning to listen to… HALIFAX CHRONICLE HERALD
Pianist Dudley knows his way around the classics, tastefully interpreting Duke Ellington, Thelonious Monk and other giants, but doing so without a paint-by-numbers mentality. THE TENNESSEAN
One of Western New York's most popular and exciting jazz combos -The Bruce Dudley Quintet, with vocalist Sandra Dudley… Bruce’s piano lines are like icing on the cake. NIAGARA FALLS REVIEW
What other people have to say about Bruce Dudley....
“It is so refreshing to hear someone perform a composition, whether original or standard and be able to FEEL the reverence and compassion for the tune. (Dudley’s) lyricism is tremendous and (his) touch unreal. There's that Ahmad Jamal dynamic in there...that super hip taste and softness that swings with urgency.” CHAD ANDERSON, drummer, visual & graphic artist.
Bruce Dudley has excellent solos…I'm impressed with his flowing articulation. PAT LABARBERA, Saxophonist with Elvin Jones, Buddy Rich, and others.
Thompsons Station, TN
Willing to teach:
Advanced students only.
I have taught at the university level since 1986 after graduating from Eastman with a Master degree in Jazz Performance. I have conducted big bands and coached jazz combos, taught jazz improvisation (beginning through advanced), jazz theory and arranging, music business, and private jazz and commercial piano. My goal is always to help the student develop his or her craft, technique, and to foster creativity and originality.
I have conducted clinics at colleges and universities across the United States and Canada covering jazz improvisation, rhythm section playing, vocal accompaniment, and jazz ensemble festival adjudication.