Jeff Haas, piano
A native of Detroit who has lived in Traverse City over half his life, Jeff Haas was educated at the Berlin Hochschule fur Musik and the famed Cass Tech High School where he studied classical piano and composition. Haas went on to find his unique compositional voice, a confluence of his passion for jazz, R&B & funk and Judaic & world music. He has received commissions from Arts Midwest, Chamber Music America, Detroit 300 and the Jewish Federation of Metro Detroit. Jeff’s music has been performed by many jazz and classical notables. In 1996, Haas founded Building Bridges with Music, a Michigan-based non profit that uses the universal language of music to open hearts and minds to a discussion about the importance of open mindedness and respect. Jeff’s multicultural quintet has conducted their respect & diversity workshops in over 750 public schools throughout Michigan. For info, visit www.buildingbridgeswithmusic.org.
Anthony Stanco, trumpet
Born in Southeast Michigan, raised in the Blues and Soul mecca of Detroit, and tutored by the community’s finest (Rodney Whitaker, Marcus Belgrave), Anthony Stanco joins a generation of jazz musicians that both reveres the roots of the music and energetically seeks its future. With a big, brilliant sound and a fearless command of the horn, Stanco brings to mind trumpet greats such as Freddie Hubbard and Dizzy Gillespie. Stanco’s band, The Crucial Elements, has built a livelihood touring the world repeatedly as intercultural ambassadors through the US State Department’s “American Music Abroad” program. They consistently receive rave reviews about their engaging live performances and equally captivating record titled “The Crucial Elements.” Stanco continues to have an active recording career and has released his second record titled “You Know The Feeling” on the Detroit Music Factory label. When not touring or recording he is the Assistant Professor of Jazz Trumpet at Michigan State University. Hear his music and find upcoming shows here: anthonystanco.com
Marcus Elliot, saxophone
Marcus Elliot is a saxophonist, composer, improviser, and educator based in Detroit, Michigan. Marcus is a 2020 Kresge Artist Fellow, awarded by Kresge Arts in Detroit. His compositions and improvisations have been described by the New York Times as “convincing and confident, evolved in touch and tone…”, and the Detroit Free Press has said, “Marcus Elliot represents next generation of jazz”. Elliot leads and co-leads many different Detroit based bands including the Marcus Elliot Quartet, Clockwork, Balance, Beyond Rebellious, and Lanula. Elliot performs in the Shigeto Live Ensemble. He is a Fellow of the Geri Allen Gathering Orchestra. He co-founded the nonprofit Polyfold Musical Arts Collective. Elliot is the director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s Civic Jazz Ensembles. Elliot received his master’s degree in improvisation from the University of Michigan.
Elliot is a disciple of the Detroit music scene. His mentors include Rodney Whitaker, Marcus Belgrave, Robert Hurst, Donald Walden, Bennie Maupin, Marion Hayden, and Karriem Riggins. After graduating with a bachelors degree in Jazz Studies from Michigan State University, Marcus began to curate weekly performances in Detroit, showcasing some of Detroit’s young jazz musicians. He held a weekly residency at Detroit’s premiere jazz club, Cliff Bell’s, for four years. Marcus self-released three albums with his ensemble, the Marcus Elliot Quartet and co-released an album with his duo project with Michael Malis, Balance.
Marion Hayden, bass
Born in Detroit, MI, a crucible of jazz, Marion Hayden is one of the nation’s finest proponents of the acoustic bass. Mentored by master trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, Hayden began performing jazz at the age of 15. She has performed with such diverse luminaries as Bobby McFerrin, Nancy Wilson, Geri Allen, Regina Carter, Steve Turre, Lester Bowie, David Allen Grier, James Carter, Dorothy Donegan, Joe Williams, Lionel Hampton, Frank Morgan, Jon Hendricks, Hank Jones, Bobby Hutcherson, Larry Willis, Vanessa Rubin, Sheila Jordan, Mulgrew Miller, Annie Ross and many others. She is a co-founder of the touring jazz ensemble Straight Ahead- the first all woman jazz ensemble signed to Atlantic Records. She is a member of the Detroit International Jazz Festival All-Star Ambassadors touring ensemble.
Widely recognized as a standard bearer of culture and artistic history, Hayden received a 2019 Art X Grant and a Creators of Culture Grant for original musical works. She was Artistic Director for a 2018 Knight Arts Foundation Grant encouraging young women in jazz. In 2016 Hayden was honored for her work as a performer and educator with the prestigious Kresge Artist Fellowship- a 1 year fellowship and grant award given an elite group of creative artists. She was the recipient of a 2016 Jazz Hero Award.- a national award given by the Jazz Journalists Association- recognizing people who have made a significant contribution through their artistry and community engagement.
Tariq Gardner, drums
Tariq Gardner, is an electrifying drummer, composer and educator- steeped in the rich music traditions of his home city- Detroit, MI. Reared in an artistic family, his mother, Bassist, Marion Hayden and father, painter/sculptor M. Saffell Gardner, greatly impacted his musical knowledge and artistic vision. Tariq’s creative practice centers the Black American Music traditions of Jazz, Neo-Soul and Hip-Hop as compositional vehicles with an emphasis on explorative live performance with his group Evening Star.
Tariq is a 2018 graduate of the Dept. of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation, University of Michigan. He has served as the Drummer for the John Douglas Quartet from 2017-19, led groups at the Charles H. Wright Museum’s African World Fest in both 2017 and 2018, has performed with the Detroit Jazz Fest All Star Alumni Band (a three month residency featuring pianist Cameron Graves (2019)), performed at the Detroit Jazz Festival (2018-2021) and at the Cape May Jazz Festival (2019).
As an educator, Tariq is a performance facilitator and Teaching Artist for University Musical Society at University of Michigan and is a Program Assistant for the Geri Allen Jazz Camp, Newark, NJ.- as well as managing his own private drum studio. He continues to work as a drummer, producer, composer, educator and bandleader.