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Faculty Profiles

Jessica Jones

Jessica Jones  Tenor saxophonist and pianist Jessica has worked with Joseph Jarman, Cecil
Taylor, Don Cherry, and Peter Apfelbaum as well as a variety of Haitian, Caribbean and African bands. These influences helped form her compositional direction which is grounded in the jazz tradition and, as is truly traditional in jazz, reaches for new directions and a unique sound. The primary outlet for her compositions for the past twenty years has been the Jessica Jones
Quartet, a pianoless quartet founded with fellow tenor player and husband Tony Jones. She has released four albums of her band, including guest artists from the community of innovative east and west coast musicians and poets.  Jones received an NEA study grant, and has been profiled in JazzTimes magazine.

The Jessica Jones Quartet has played in the Knitting Factory Festival in New York City, the Bay Area Jazz Poetry Festival, and the Eddie Moore Jazz Festival in Oakland, California, where the group headlined with special guest Don Cherry. The group has been featured in venues on the East and West Coast including Yoshi’s and Dizzy’s Club and released several CDs to critical acclaim including “Nod,” featuring Tristano-lineage pianist Connie Crothers and Joseph Jarman of the Art Ensemble of Chicago, and their most recent, “Moxie.”

In addition to her work with the band and as a sideman in NYC, Jessica is an innovative jazz educator and consultant, working with children on improvisation, composition, and oral traditions for Stanford Jazz Workshop, the Vision Festival, Brooklyn Friends School and others. She has worked with Cazadero Performing Arts Family Camp, Jam Camp West, the City of Oakland, and Jazz at Lincoln Center developing music programs for youth, including JALC’s JazzGirls Day program.

Media coverage includes reviews in Wire, JazzTimes, Jazziz, Jazz Now, All About Jazz, New York City Jazz Record, Signal to Noise, Nashville City Paper, Bay Guardian, East Bay Express, Cadence and several jazz websites and blogs.

Major performances as a sideman include:
SF Jazz Festival with Cecil Taylor Orchestra
Chicago Jazz Festival with Joseph Jarman Sextet
Nancy (France) Jazz Festival with Joseph Jarman’s Lifetime
Visions Orchestra
Vision Festival (NYC) with Joseph Jarman sextet, ensemble, and
Lifetime Visions Orchestra
Berkeley Jazz Festival, High Sierra Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival with Peter
Apfelbaum’s Hieroglyphics Ensemble
France tour with Haitian band Skah Shah
Also performed with Bo Diddley, Don Cherry and others