Concert Series

Date: 7:30pm EDT March 28, 2015

Latin Grammy Award Winning - Afro Bop Alliance

As part of 2014-2015 Premier Artist lineup, The Washington College Concert Series presents the Grammy Award-winning Afro Bop Alliance in Decker Theater. The seven-piece Latin Jazz ensemble always thrills audiences with their infectious polyrhythmic grooves, harmonic colorings, and improvisational flights. Features drums, bass, piano, sax, trombone, trumpet, and steel pan. 

The exhilarating Afro Bop Alliance always thrills audiences with their infectious polyrhythmic grooves, harmonic colorings, and improvisational flights. The band’s influences come from the musical styles of the many different cultures which come together under the umbrella of Latin and Latin Jazz. Afro Bop’s focus is to blend all of these Latin styles and musical traditions with each member’s jazz experiences to forge their own sound. Individual tickets are $20 (adults) and $15 (non-WC College Students / Seniors over age 65). WC students and youth 18 and under are free. Season tickets are available, as well. A reception will be provided during intermission and following the performance.

At the 9th Annual Latin Grammy Awards, Afro Bop Alliance was awarded a Grammy for Best Latin Jazz Recording for their 2008 album, Caribbean Jazz Project - Afro Bop Alliance featuring Dave Samuels. This same album was also nominated for “Best Latin Jazz Album” at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards. In February 2007, Afro Bop Alliance was presented the “Best Latin Recording” award by the Washington Area Music Association (WAMA) for their 2006 recording, “Camino Nuevo”. Other WAMA awards include 2010 Best Latin Ensemble and 2011 Best Big Band Recording-Una Mas. Their music has received critical acclaim worldwide, as the band continues to perform at many clubs, restaurants, private events, concerts, and festivals throughout the mid-Atlantic region. 

Joe McCarthy
Grammy Award winning drummer, producer, and bandleader Joe McCarthy has lead a diverse career which has taken him from Symphony Orchestra and Big Band, to Afro Cuban, Bebop, and beyond. Joe is the leader and drummer for the United States Naval Academy Band’s Jazz Ensemble, The Next Wave, and Principal Percussionist of the USNA Band’s Wind Ensemble. Joe is also co-leader of the Vince Norman/Joe McCarthy Big Band with their 2007 release of “Words Cannot Express,” and 2010 release of “Bright Future” on OA2 Records. Active in education, Joe is an Adjunct Professor of Drumset and Afro-Cuban Percussion Studies at Georgetown University in Washington DC and George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. Joe is in demand as a clinician throughout the US and abroad. He has written for Jazz Improv Magazine, Latin Percussion’s “All About Rhythm,” and has published his own Afro-Cuban Big Band Play-Along Book/CD and DVD. 

Harry Appelman 
Jazz pianist and educator Harry Appelman has performed on concert stages on five continents. He has been chosen three times to participate in U.S. State Department music tours overseas for the Rhythm Road: American Music Abroad program (formerly the Jazz Ambassadors) – to South and Central America in 2002, to Eastern Europe, Turkey and Cyprus in February 2007 and to South Asia in March 2009. He performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland in July 2009, and also played concerts and clinics in Egypt in February 2008 with the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, under the direction of David Baker. Harry has toured the United States and Canada with the Woody Herman Orchestra and the Artie Shaw Orchestra. 

Luis Hernandez 
A native of Miami, Luis Hernandez began his musical career on the saxophone at the age of 14. In 1987, his young talent was recognized as he was admitted into the New World School of the Arts and had the opportunity to perform alongside jazz greats such as Ira Sullivan and Freddie Hubbard. While still in high school, Luis worked steadily in the south Florida area playing in a variety of musical settings. In 1996, Luis joined the U.S. Navy Band “Commodores” as tenor saxophonist and featured soloist. Luis has performed at seven International Saxophone Symposiums playing with James Moody, Dick Oatts, Nick Brignola, Lew Tabackin, Gary Smulyan, Arturo Sandoval and others. He has also worked with Keter Betts, Loston Harris, Leslie Ughams and is a member of the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra. 

Tim Stanley
Tim Stanley is a native of Belleville, IL. Watching his father play with bands of almost every genre in the St. Louis area were his earliest musical experiences. He began his own studies on trumpet at the age of nine. After graduating from high school in 1993, he attended Eastern Illinois University. At EIU he studied trumpet with Dr. W. Parker Melvin and jazz with acclaimed pianist Henry Butler. In 1997 Tim enlisted in the US Navy as a musician. After accelerated graduation from the Armed Forces School of Music he was assigned to Navy Band Northeast in Newport, RI. While there he performed with the concert and ceremonial bands, and as featured soloist with the Jazz Ensemble and VIP Jazz Combo. In 2001, Tim became a member of The United States Naval Academy Band in Annapolis, MD, performing in the “Next Wave” Jazz Ensemble, the “Commandant’s Combo”, the Wind Ensemble, and ceremonial bands. Since March 2004, he has been a member of the United States Navy “Commodores” Jazz Ensemble. Tim resides in Annapolis, MD with his wife, Mary, and sons, Nathan and Ryan. 

Tom Baldwin
Tom Baldwin, bassist, composer, and recording artist, was born and raised in Baltimore, MD. After earning a BM in Jazz Studies at Ithaca College, he returned to the Baltimore/Washington metropolitan area and is now among the most in-demand bassists of the region. Since winning second place in the Thelonious Monk International Bass Competition, Baldwin has had the opportunity to work with a number of prominent jazz artists, including instrumentalists Eric Alexander, Gene Bertoncini, Stanley Cowell, George Garzone, as well as vocalists Michael Feinstein, Eartha Kitt, Bernadette Peters, and Kenny Rankin. He has performed at such venues as Blues Alley, The Kennedy Center, The Meyerhoff, Strathmore, Wolftrap, and the Library of Congress. Baldwin is on the faculty at the University of Maryland in College Park as well as at UMBC. 

Victor Provost
Victor Provost has shown that he can transcend the expectations of instrument and genre. With appearances at the Umbria Jazz Festival, DC Jazz Festival, The Kennedy Center, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Pure Jazz Den Haag, and at major venues throughout North America, the Caribbean, and Europe, he has been meticulously solidifying his reputation as a master of the Steel Pan and crafting an improvisational voice and style to be reckoned with. Provost’s ability to extemporaneously weave through chord changes and tonalities with accuracy and conviction, while being thoughtful and creative, often elicits the statement “I didn’t know a steel pan could do that”. He is one of a handful of pan players in the world who have incorporated a Bebop foundation into their playing, and arguably, the only one who has expounded on that vocabulary with a modern sensibility and style. 

Vince Norman
Vince Norman, the son of saxophonist Ray Norman who played with the big bands of Claude Thornhill and Charlie Barnett and with Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys in the late forties and early fifties, has been exposed to jazz music all his life. While playing with the Del City High School Jazz Ensemble he was offered his first gig with the Rick Swyden Big Band at age 16 and has been going non-stop ever since. Vince has written numerous pieces for jazz ensemble as well as several orchestral “pops” commissions for a saxophone quartet called the Capitol Quartet that performs concerts with major symphonies worldwide. Vince recently retired from the full time arranging staff for The U.S. Army Field Band and performs extensively in the DC/Baltimore area on saxophone and keyboards. 


Phone: (410) 778-7839

Jonathan McCollum, Ph.D.
Premier Artist Series, Artistic Director

Ken Schweitzer, D.M.A
Concert Series Advisory Council, Chair