One of the brightest stars on the contemporary jazz scene, Maurice Brown was born on January 6, 1981, in Harvey, IL. Showing a remarkable affinity for the trumpet, Brown performed with Ramsey Lewis at the Symphony Center in Chicago while still a student at Hillcrest High School. Following graduation, he received a full scholarship to attend Northern Illinois University, and later continued his studies at Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA, where he worked with famed clarinetist Alvin Batiste. Brown relocated to New Orleans shortly thereafter, sitting in with numerous jazz veterans, including Clark Terry, Johnny Griffin, Ellis Marsalis, and Lonnie Plaxico, as well as recording as a sideman with Curtis Fuller, Fred Anderson, Roy Hargrove, Michelle Carr, and Ernest Dawkins, among others. In 2001 he won first place in the National Miles Davis Trumpet Competition and in 2003 he released his first album as a bandleader, heading his Maurice Brown Quintet for Hip to Bop, which showed an amazing affinity for bop-inflected jazz, along with a willingness to expand the genre's lexicon through innovative techniques like playing trumpet solos through a wah-wah pedal. Brown continues to live in New Orleans, playing both with his quintet and a hip-hop/funk combo called Soul'd U Out. ~ Steve Leggett
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