New York based pianist Chris Parker is a multifaceted performer and composer who has written for everything from small jazz groups and chamber ensembles to full symphony orchestra. With a long list of original works, he heads his own group that offers a diverse, lineup of Latin, funk and straight-ahead jazz. Contemporary jazz icons Randy Brecker, Bob Mintzer, Chris Vadala and Lyn Seaton have all performed with Parker’s band.
Originally from Portland, Oregon, Parker started classical piano lessons at age nine. Eventually earning Bachelors and Masters degrees in music composition, Parker moved to New York where he has been Professor of Music and head of jazz studies at SUNY Orange. A New York Chancellor’s Award winner, Parker engages and inspires students as he teaches them the skills they will need as future musicians.
His two CDs on the OA2 label, “Late in Lisbon” and the newly released “Full Circle” feature the unusual frontline of saxophone and violin. The albums are an exciting mix of Parker’s original jazz compositions ranging in style from burning latin and straight ahead, to funky tunes and laid back ballads.