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Green Country Jazz Series Kicks Off With Russell Malone

TAHLEQUAH – The 2008-‘09 Green Country Jazz Series at Northeastern State University kicks off in grand fashion with the return of world-renowned guitarist Russell Malone to Tahlequah, appearing in concert with the NSU Jazz Ensemble on Thursday, Nov. 6, at 8 p.m., at the NSU Jazz Lab.

Russell Malone is a rare gem among jazz guitarists in the jazz scene today,” said Arthur White, NSU director of Jazz Studies. “He can function equally well in big band and small group settings, and can play any style better than most guitarists out there. We are incredibly excited to bring this potent artist to NSU.

Malone, a Georgia native, began his guitar journey learning the blues and country styles of B.B. King, Chet Atkins and Roy Clark, and fell in love with jazz after hearing George Benson, Wes Montgomery and Grant Green. Malone landed his first professional gig with legendary organist Jimmy Smith, and shortly after, landed the guitar slot with the popular Harry Connick Jr. orchestra. He became a member of vocalist Diana Krall’s trio in 1995, and was an integral member on three Grammy-nominated albums. Malone has been a successful solo artist since 1998, and has released a string of critically acclaimed albums.

Malone will be featured with the NSU Jazz Ensemble, the flagship ensemble of the NSU Jazz Studies Program. The band is celebrating the release of their recent CD, “Global Citizen: The Music of Robin Eubanks,” and has appeared in concert recently with Bobby Watson, Scott Wendholt, Henry Johnson, Mulgrew Miller, Kevin Mahogany and Bob Mintzer, among others. The band’s second CD, “Appointment in Milano,” was named one of the top 10 university jazz CDs of 2006 by Jazz Education Journal. The band’s third CD, “The Point,” was named to the Best of 2007 big band CD list.

Having Russell Malone in Tahlequah will be the perfect way to begin a remarkable performing series,” said White.

Tickets for the general admission show are $12 for adults and $6 for students, and can be reserved by calling (918) 444-4603. Malone will present a free masterclass, open to the public, at 3 p.m. at the Jazz Lab. The concert is supported with a grant from the Oklahoma Arts Council with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Global Citizen” can be purchased online at, or at the NSU Jazz Lab for $12, and will be available the night of the show. For more information on the album or concerts, contact Arthur White at (918) 444-4602.


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