Gerald Clayton

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Gerald Clayton
Gerald Clayton.jpg
Gerald Clayton
Background information
Born(1984-05-11) May 11, 1984 (age 29)
Utrecht, Netherlands
OriginSouthern California, United States
GenresMainstream jazz
OccupationsMusician
InstrumentsPiano
LabelsArtistShare
Verve
Sin-Drome
Associated actsGerald Clayton Trio
Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra
The Clayton Brothers
Diana Krall
Roberta Gambarini Quartet
Websitewww.geraldclayton.com
 
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Gerald Clayton
Gerald Clayton.jpg
Gerald Clayton
Background information
Born(1984-05-11) May 11, 1984 (age 29)
Utrecht, Netherlands
OriginSouthern California, United States
GenresMainstream jazz
OccupationsMusician
InstrumentsPiano
LabelsArtistShare
Verve
Sin-Drome
Associated actsGerald Clayton Trio
Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra
The Clayton Brothers
Diana Krall
Roberta Gambarini Quartet
Websitewww.geraldclayton.com

Gerald William Clayton is a jazz pianist and composer born in Utrecht, Netherlands, and raised in Southern California. He is the son of bassist/bandleader John Clayton and the nephew of multi-instrumentalist wind player Jeff Clayton.

Biography[edit]

Gerald Clayton studied classical piano with Linda Buck for eleven years, starting at the age of seven,[1] and jazz piano and composition with Donald Vega, Shelly Berg, Kenny Barron and Billy Childs. He graduated from Los Angeles County High School for the Arts in 2002. At graduation, he was selected by the Music for Youth Foundation as one of four young musicians to receive a scholarship and perform at Steinway Hall.[2] In September 2002, he received the Shelly Manne Award for emerging young artists from the Los Angeles Jazz Society.[3] In 2006, he received the Bachelor of Arts degree through the Jazz Studies program at USC Thornton School of Music; a program that included his father as senior lecturer. He took second place in the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Piano Competition.[4][5] In the winter of 2006–2007, Gerald Clayton moved to New York City where he currently resides. Clayton is currently represented by Addeo Music International (AMI).

Influences[edit]

Gerald Clayton reports that his influences include Oscar Peterson, Monty Alexander, Benny Green and Ray Brown. His most important musical influence is his father, John Clayton.

Major appearances[edit]

John and Gerald Clayton performing as part of the Clayton Brothers Quintet at International Association for Jazz Education in 2007

Gerald Clayton currently tours with The Clayton Brothers and the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra. He leads the various permutations of the Gerald Clayton Trio, including the addition of extra players and the accompaniment of jazz vocalists. He has performed in a duo with his father, John Clayton. He appears regularly at the Jazz Gallery in New York, where his own compositions are presented. He has taken part in several world tours with the Roy Hargrove Quintet.

Fan-funded debut as a leader[edit]

The fan-funded ArtistShare platform was used for Clayton's discographic debut as a leader, releasing[9] the trio album Two-Shade.[10]

Grammy nomination[edit]

In 2010, Gerald Clayton was nominated for a Grammy for 'Best Instrumental Composition' for "Battle Circle", which is featured on the also Grammy nominated Clayton Brothers album, New Song and Dance. In December 2009, Clayton was nominated for Best Improvised Jazz Solo, for his solo on Cole Porter's "All of You" from Clayton's Two-Shade album. His nomination was one in a pool of much more established jazz stars such as Terence Blanchard and Roy Hargrove, with whom Clayton toured for several years.

Additionally, The Clayton Brothers' Brother To Brother received a Grammy nomination in the Best Jazz Instrumental Album, Individual or Group category. Gerald Clayton plays piano on the album, which holds loosely to a theme of songs that were originally made famous by earlier musical groups of brothers such as Thad, Hank and Elvin Jones. Clayton's piano playing was described by Ben Ratliff of The New York Times as "[filling] up the available space" with Clayton "busying himself with prettiness and authority."[11] Ratliff continued, "If you've listened to much hard bop or mainstream jazz of the early '60s, you might find some easygoing clichés in his playing – or maybe even an awful lot of them – but they are smoothly rendered. More important, the friendly rhetoric of this music allows them."[11]

Discography[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Clayton played competition soccer in school for eight years and enjoys dancing.

References[edit]

External links[edit]