• 8/3/17 – Beals/Morrison Organ Quartet

  • Combine the warmth and expressive sound from jazz guitarist Christopher Morrison with the golden saxophone sensation of organist Andrew Beals and you obtain a great night of jazz from the Andrew Beals/Christopher Morrison Organ Groove on August 3rd as part of the 2017 Branford Jazz Series on the Branford Town Green.

    Andrew Beals joined legendary Jazz Organist, “Brother” Jack McDuff and the “Heatin’ System” in 1986. Beals became the latest in a long line of jazz saxophone greats including: Sonny Stitt, Gene Ammons, Red Holloway, Joe Henderson, Joe Lovano, Harold Vick, and Rahsaan Roland Kirk, to work with McDuff.
    Beals’ fourteen-year tenure in McDuff’s band was marked by a busy performance schedule, which included lengthy tours of North America and Europe. He is a featured soloist and arranger of McDuff’s compact discs for Concord and Summit records.
    Andrew began his recording career as a leader with his compact disc “Gravy Train” on NASMusic Records. He has appeared as a leader of his own band and as a featured soloist with McDuff, and others at many renowned jazz clubs and festivals.
    Beals was a semifinalist at the 1993 Thelonious Monk Jazz Saxophone Competition and in 1998 he was awarded the prestigious NYU Jazz Orchestra Scholarship for graduate studies in Jazz performance and composition. He is currently an Adjunct Professor of Jazz Saxophone and Jazz Improvisation at Western Connecticut State University (W.C.S.U.) . He received his Bachelor of Arts Music degree at Livingston College, Rutgers University, and has a Master of Arts Music degree from New York University.

    The son of jazz guitarist, Allen Morrison, Christopher Morrison began performing early on with New Haven, CT jazz organists Richard McCrae, Bobby Buster and Eddie Buster.  The training he received while working with these men made a lasting impression on Chris.  To this day, his playing and teaching style reflect the simple and practical approach that was used in his education.
   Chris has recorded and or performed with Adam Nussbaum, Lew Soloff, John Patitucci, Joe Beck, Akiko Tsuruga, Chip Jackson, Joe Magnarelli, Harvie S, Delfeayo Marsalis, Richie Cole, John Stowell, Gary Versace, and Ralph Lalama. Recently he has appeared with the legendary guitarist, Joe Diorio, as his guitar duo partner. In 2003 Chris released his debut CD, “The Christopher Morrison Quartet”.  The CD features pianist Robert Aries, bassist Chip Jackson and drummer Bob Leonard. Dr. Ken Ciuffreda of  Just Jazz Guitar magazine writes, “Chris produces one of the most beautiful sounds I have ever heard coaxed out of a jazz guitar – great phrasing, perfect musicality, warmth and expression -  all played effortlessly with seemingly unlimited technique.”
    Chris was fortunate to study with jazz guitarists Sal Salvador, Don Neary and Joe Diorio, arranger Bill Finegan and pianists Charlie Banacos and Mike Longo. He holds a Masters of Music degree in Jazz Performance from the Conservatory of Music at SUNY Purchase. His undergraduate studies, Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies, were completed at The University of Bridgeport and Western Connecticut State University.
   Chris is employed by Western Connecticut State University where he teaches jazz guitar and small group jazz. He has earned several awards for his teaching including a Distinguished Adjunct Appreciation Award and a Centennial Award for Excellence from Western Connecticut State University.
    Chris is an artist representative for Roger Borys Guitars and Fuchs Audio Technology.  He currently leads his own trio, as well as, being an in-demand sideman.
    The duo is joined by Kyle Kohler on the Hammond B3 Organ and Rudy Petschauer on the drums.

    For questions about the series, please call 203-488-8304 or email to: branfordjazz@gmail.com