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In this special performance exclusively for The Spire Center, Jazz Guitarist Mark Whitfield takes the stage along with his son Davis Whitfield on piano and long-time cohorts Eric Wheeler on bass and Kush Abadey on Drums.
Whitfield was born in Lindenhurst, New York and graduated from Boston’s Berklee College of Music, the institute for the study of Jazz and modern American music, in the Spring of 1987 having studied composition and arranging as well as all styles of guitar performance. Upon graduation, he returned to his native New York to embark on a career as a jazz guitarist that afforded him the opportunity to collaborate with many artists including Dizzy Gillespie, Art Blakey, Clark Terry, Jimmy Smith, Carmen McRae, Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, Jack McDuff, Betty Carter, Shirley Horn, Ray Charles, Gladys Knight, Burt Bacharach, Joe Williams, Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Stanley Turrentine and his greatest teacher and mentor George Benson.
In 1990, the New York Times dubbed Whitfield “The Best Young Guitarist in the Business” and later that year Warner Bros. released his solo debut, “The Marksman”. The success of this release has led to a recording career that has produced 14 solo projects to date and collaborative efforts with important artists in recent years: Sting, D’Angelo, Mary J. Blige, Chaka Khan, John Mayer, Jill Scott, Roy Hargrove, Diana Krall, Lauryn Hill, Sy Smith and Chris Botti.
In September 2005, Mark Whitfield accepted the invitation to join the faculty at his alma mater, teaming up with Joe Lovano, Ralph Peterson, Danilo Perez and Terri Lyne Carrington as “Artists in Residence” at Berklee. While maintaining a teaching schedule that requires his presence on campus 1 day a week for 14 weeks/per semester, and a touring schedule that includes at least 100 concert dates/per year with trumpeter Chris Botti, Whitfield still manages to remain very active as a solo and collaborative artist.