Grammy-winning trumpeter to headline MTSU’s Backgammon Jazz Festival on April 2

Grammy-winning trumpeter and jazz educator Brian Lynch

MURFEESBORO, Tenn. – A Grammy-winning jazz trumpeter will headline Middle Tennessee State University’s annual Illinois Jacquet Jazz Festival on Saturday, April 2, providing music lovers with a public concert with MTSU School students of Music to cap off a day of learning for the school’s senior musicians.

The concert, featuring acclaimed musician and educator Brian Lynch and MTSU student Jazz Ensemble I performing selections from Lynch’s acclaimed big band album, “The Omni-American Book Club: My Journey Through Literature in Music “, is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Central to Hinton Hall inside the Wright Music Building at 1439 Faulkinberry Drive.

Lynch, a five-time Grammy nominee, is a two-time winner, winning Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album 2019 for “The Omni-American Book Club” and 2006 Best Latin Jazz Album.

The April 2 concert is free to MTSU students, faculty and staff, and workshop attendees. Public concert tickets are available for $10 each by contacting MTSU Jazz Studies Program Director Jamey Simmons at

High school musicians can register through Thursday, March 31 to participate in all events, on campus or online via Zoom – at, where a schedule complete is available. The cost is $20 per student.

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Grammy-winning jazz trumpeter – Continued…

The day’s events will also be accessible at

Lynch, jazz trumpet studio instructor at the University of Miami Frost School of Music in Coral Gables, Florida, will discuss his career as a jazz musician, composer and educator and provide information on the trumpet and details on jazz improvisation at a student music clinic at 3:30 p.m. Central on April 2.

A multi-award-winning musician who has performed with some of the genre’s iconic talents, including Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, the Horace Silver Quartet and Latin jazz legend Eddie Palmieri, Lynch has released over 20 albums.

“This year’s festival showcases innovative performers and educators creating an opportunity for jazz students and audiences,” Simmons said. “We are thrilled to have Brian showcase his abilities as a legendary performer and songwriter alongside our student artists (MTSU).”

The day will also include combo performances, a student jam session, a Jazz Ensemble II concert, and a clinic by the MTSU Faculty Jazz Quintet for festival attendees.

MTSU’s annual Jazz Festival, which honors the late tenor saxophonist Jean-Baptiste “Illinois” Jacquet, offers high school musicians a one-on-one approach to jazz style and the art of jazz improvisation. Students from MTSU’s Jazz Program and jazz ensembles from area schools participate in concerts and clinics led by faculty members and guests throughout the event.

The Illinois Jacquet Foundation established a scholarship for MTSU jazz students in the artist’s name in 2014. The School of Music renamed the festival in 2016 to honor Jacquet, an innovator of bands by Count Basie and Lionel Hampton who died in 2004 after a history of 60 years. -more career that has profoundly influenced jazz, R&B and rock ‘n’ roll artists.

Dr. Pamela Jacquet Davis, Jacquet’s daughter, and members of the foundation also plan to present a short film and presentation about the artist at Noon Central on April 2 in the Instrumental Rehearsal Room of the Wright Music Building.

MTSU’s Jazz Ensemble I is the most successful student group in the program. These experienced student musicians focus on cutting-edge works and big band repertoire, as well as new compositions and their own arrangements.

For more information about the Illinois Jacquet Jazz Festival at MTSU, contact Simmons at 615-898-2724 or email Details of MTSU’s Jazz Studies program can be found at

More information about Lynch is available at

For more information about the Illinois Jacquet Foundation, visit

For details on MTSU School of Music performances and events, call 615-898-2493 or visit and click on the “Concert Schedule” link.

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