John Clayton Jazz


Blues, Bebop & Beyond ~ Iconic Jazz Legacies
featuring bassist John Clayton & trumpeter Bijon Watson

Saturday, October 21 :: 8 PM

link to purchase tickets for shows at Rockport Music

John Clayton, double bass | Bijon Watson, trumpet | Dino Govoni, saxophone | Steven Feifke, piano | Yoron Israel, drums

In an evening of blues, bass and bebop, an all-star ensemble featuring Grammy Award-winning bassist John Clayton and trumpeter (and artistic curator) Bijon Watson will perform, remember, and reimagine the music from iconic albums and performances that featured the legendary bassist Ray Brown and trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie, two prominent figures in the bebop jazz era.

Distinguished jazz trumpeter Bijon Watson introduces audiences to a series entitled Iconic Jazz Legacies that offers a new look at some of jazz’s greatest legends and musical relationships.  The programs will feature some of the most respected and dynamic performers today re-imagining musical conversations from the genre’s storied past.  The series acts as both a loving homage and a fresh musical odyssey.


Bassist, Composer, Arranger and Producer, John Clayton is a Grammy© Award winner with nine additional nominations and has written and/or recorded with artists such as Milt Jackson, Diana Krall, Paul McCartney, Regina Carter, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Gladys Knight, Queen Latifah, McCoy Tyner, YoYo Ma and Charles Aznavour, to name only a few. John was the principal bassist in the Amsterdam Philharmonic Orchestra (The Netherlands) from 1980-1984. In 1986, John co-founded the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra and rekindled The Clayton Brothers Quintet. In addition to his individual clinics and workshops, he also directs the educational components of Centrum, The Port Townsend Jazz Festival, and the Vail Jazz Workshop. It is John’s arrangement of the “Star Spangled Banner” that helped propel Whitney Houston in her 1990 performance at the Super Bowl (the recording went platinum). His recordings with the Clayton Brothers, the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, Milt Jackson, Monty Alexander, Count Basie and others are plentiful. John feels “I’ve been guided by a village of musicians who helped me understand the humility that goes along with playing music at the highest level you can. Ray Brown used to tell me to ‘Learn how to play the bass!!’ Just take care of the music and it will take care of you.


Grammy Award winning trumpeter Bijon Watson’s career as a musician and educator spans more than 25 years and has taken him around the globe to perform for audiences worldwide. His love for big band jazz inspired him to become a student of the great bands of the past and present and he has become a sought after and in-demand lead trumpet player that can be heard on television, in films, and award-winning recordings with iconic and world-class artists.  Bijon plays lead trumpet for the Grammy®-nominated Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, the Grammy®-winning John Daversa Progressive Big Band, the Grammy®-winning John Beasley’s Monkestra, José Rizo’s Jazz on the Latin Side All-Stars, the late Gerald Wilson Jazz Orchestra, and many other jazz, salsa, and pop bands throughout the United States. Most recently as coleader with pianist Steven Feifke, Bijon can be heard showcasing his talents as lead trumpet and featured soloist with their Grammy®-winning Generation Gap Jazz Orchestra.