Born: May 25, 1960 Primary Instrument: Trumpet
At a time when much of the Jazz world seems content to simply attempt to recreate the past, trumpeter/composer Wallace Roney follows the true Jazz tradition of utilizing the past to move forward. This has resulted in acknowledgment by the public and his peers with his receipt of three Grammy Awards and numerous nominations for projects in which he was the featured performer and/or collaborator.
Wallace Roney earned the admiration and respect of his colleagues and his elders since age 16. He has been an integral part of the band with Art Blakey, Elvin Jones, Philly Joe Jones, Walter Davis Jr., Herbie Hancock, Tony Williams, Jay McShann, David Murray, and McCoy Tyner; as well as a featured as a soloist with Ornette Coleman, Sonny Rollins, Curtis Fuller, Carole King, Joni Mitchell, and Dizzy Gillespie, to name a few. He was one of the most popular jazz sidemen in the music industry early into his professional career and is one of the few musicians in his generation who learned and perfected his craft directly from alliances with Jazz Masters. He is continuing his push to develop new concepts in jazz and is considered one of the leaders in the future movement of jazz music.
Born in Philadelphia, May 25, 1960, Wallace began studying the trumpet and music theory at age four at Philadelphia’s Settlement School of Music. When he entered the Duke Ellington High School for the Performing Arts, he had already made his recording debut at age 14, and had attained distinction as a gifted local performer. In 1979 and again in 1980, Mr. Roney won DownBeat's Award for Best Young Jazz Musician of the Year. Between studies at Berklee College of Music and Howard University, he played with Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers before departing to perform as a leading sideman. In 1987, he began new fruitful association with Tony Williams. In 1989, and again in 1990, Wallace won Down Beat Magazine's Critic's Poll for Best Trumpeter to Watch. Wallace was mentored by Miles Davis after Miles heard him in 1983 in a gala performance at Radio City Music. Their association peaked when Miles chose Wallace to share the stage at his historic performance in Montreux in 1991. After Davis died, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, Wayne Shorter, Tony Williams and Roney banded together and toured the world in tribute.
Since then, Wallace has led his own ensembles in live performance and in recordings for Muse, Warner Brothers, Concord/Stretch, and now with High Note Records.
Wallace Roney, Understanding (HighNote, 2013)
Wallace Roney, Jazz (HighNote Records, 2007)
Wallace Roney, Mystikal (HighNote Records, 2005)
Wallace Roney, Prototype (HighNote Records, 2004)
Chick Corea, Remembering Bud Powell (Stretch, 1997)
Wallace Roney, Village (Warner Bros., 1996)
Wallace Roney, The Wallace Roney Quintet (Warner Brothers, 1995)
Geri Allen, Eyes in the Back of Your Head (Blue Note, 1995)
Randy Weston, Volcano Blues (Antilles, 1993)
Herbie Hancock, Dis is Da Drum (Mercury, 1993)
Dizzy Gillespie, To Diz With Love (Telarc, 1992)
Miles Davis/Quincy Jones, Miles & Quincy Live at Montreux (Warner Brothers, 1991)
Tony Williams, The Story of Neptune (Blue Note, 1991)
Wallace Roney, The Standard Bearer (Muse, 1989)
Wallace Roney, Verses (Muse, 1987)
Tony Williams, Civilization (Blue Note, 1986)
Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, Feeling Good (Delos, 1986)
Kenny Barron, What If? (Enja, 1986)
Tony Williams, Foreign Intrigue (Blue Note, 1985)
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