‘Jazz Drum Explosion’ catches fire Feb. 16-17 with...

‘Jazz Drum Explosion’ catches fire Feb. 16-17 with 2 jazz greats

The Department of Jazz Studies in MTSU’s School of Music will present two consecutive concerts featuring two of the genre’s best-known and loved jazz drummers, Ed Soph and Duffy Jackson, Feb. 16 and 17.

Ed Soph

Soph will appear with the MTSU Jazz Faculty as part of the “MTSU Jazz Artist Series” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16. Jackson will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17, with the MTSU Jazz Ensemble I. Both performances will be held in Hinton Music Hall inside MTSU’s Wright Music Building and are open to the public.

“Ed Soph is widely regarded as one the world’s greatest jazz drummers and pedagogues, and we are thrilled to have him as our guest,” said Don Aliquo, coordinator of jazz studies at MTSU.

Soph, who is internationally recognized as a master musician, teacher and author, has presented master classes throughout Europe, the Far East, Australia and New Zealand. As a performer and recording artist, Soph has been associated with the big bands of Stan Kenton, Woody Herman, Bill Watrous and Clark Terry. He also is an artist clinician for the Yamaha Corporation of America, the Avedis Zildjian Company and Evans Drumheads.

MTSU faculty slated to perform with Soph include Jim Ferguson on bass; Pat Coil, piano; Jamey Simmons, trumpet; and Aliquo on saxophone.

Aliquo and Simmons will conduct the Feb. 17 concert featuring drummer Jackson with the MTSU Jazz Ensemble I.

“Jackson’s big band drumming is incredible,” said Aliquo. “This promises to be a great learning experience for our students and an immensely enjoyable concert for our audience.”

Duffy Jackson

Jackson’s “powerful, swinging style” has helped to drive the big-name bands of Count Basie, Artie Shaw, Lionel Hampton and Illinois Jacquet.  He’s also performed with jazz legends as Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Ella Fitzgerald, Billy Eckstine, Stan Getz and Harry “Sweets” Edison. Tutored by Buddy Rich, Gene Krupa and Louis Bellson, and the son of legendary bassist Chubby Jackson, Duffy Jackson is regarded as one of the finest big-band drummers in the world, Aliquo said.

Tickets to Soph’s Feb. 16 show with the Jazz Faculty are $15 for general admission; MTSU students, faculty and staff will be admitted free with valid IDs. Jackson and the Jazz Ensemble I’s show is free.

For more MTSU School of Music concert information, call 615-898-2493 or visit and click on the “Concert Calendar” link.