Berklee Signature Series Presents the Dee Dee Bridgewater Ensemble

The concert will feature Bridgewater and students celebrating the music of composer and bandleader Horace Silver.

October 6, 2022
Dee Dee Bridgewater

Dee Dee Bridgewater

Image by Hernan Rodriguez

Berklee's Signature Series continues with the Dee Dee Bridgewater Ensemble on Thursday, November 3, at 7:00 p.m. at the Red Room at Cafe 939. In this performance, Bridgewater, a two-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter and a Tony-winning actress, will lead a group of student musicians in a tribute to the legendary jazz pianist and composer Horace Silver, whom she describes as “the epitome of funk, soul, and jazz all rolled into some foot-stomping, finger-popping classics."

It was Bridgewater’s suggestion to use her 1995 album, Love and Peace: A Tribute to Horace Silver, as the foundation for the concert. Directed by Shirazette “She Beats” Tinnin, an associate professor in Berklee’s Percussion Department, the student ensemble will perform Silver’s compositions “Nica’s Dream,” “Permit Me to Introduce You to Yourself,” “Señor Blues,” and “The Tokyo Blues,” among others. The ensemble includes Rares Gherman (guitar), Caleb Texier (piano), Aki Oliviero (guitar), Joe Tavarez (drums), Chick Green (drums), Camden Bunker (baritone saxophone, doubles), Ian Banno (bass), Rinat Fishman (tenor saxophone, doubles), and Brandon Volel (trumpet).

"I have always admired Dee Dee’s vocal dexterity, grace, and style as an artist," said Tinnin. "When the opportunity came about in the spring for me to choose any artist that I wanted to bring in, it was a no-brainer to ask Dee Dee to share the stage with me and my students."

Bridgewater’s career began in the 1970s when she was a featured vocalist with the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra. During this period, she also performed with jazz greats Dizzy Gillespie, Dexter Gordon, Max Roach, and Sonny Rollins. Her talents led her to Broadway, where she won a Tony Award for her role as Glinda in The Wiz in 1975. She has numerous acclaimed recordings as a leader, was named a NEA Jazz Master in 2017, and is known as an artist at the forefront of jazz and gender justice.

Described by the New York Times as “one of the most popular and influential jazz musicians of the 1950s and ’60s," Horace Silver was instrumental in pioneering the hard bop style of jazz that incorporated influences from R&B, gospel music, and blues. A prolific pianist, composer, arranger, and bandleader, he formed the Jazz Messengers with Art Blakey in 1953.

Tinnin is an accomplished composer, drummer, bandleader, educator, and Fulbright scholar who has performed with a variety of musicians, including Endea Owens, Yuri Juárez Afroperuano Group, Afrikkanitha, and Mimi Jones. Her other career highlights include serving as music coordinator for Urban Bush Women and curating the final festival presentation at Little Island (summer 2021), Jazz Women.

Admission is $10 in advance. Tickets are available online and at the Berklee box office. This is a seated event.

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