Derrick Gardner

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Not to be confused with Earl Gardner (musician) or Derek Gardner.
Derrick Earl Gardner
Born June 3, 1965
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, composer, arranger
Instruments Trumpet
Years active 1992–present
Labels Owl Studios
Associated acts Derrick Gardner & The Jazz Prophets, Rob Dixon

Derrick Gardner (born June 3, 1965) is an American jazz trumpeter from Chicago, Illinois.[1]

Gardner began playing trumpet at the age of 9 in his hometown of Chicago, IL. Throughout high school and college, he was recognized by instructors as having “strong improvisational skills and a marvelous imagination.” In 1991, he moved to New York City and quickly began to make his mark on the local jazz scene, playing ith groups such as the Count Basie Orchestra, Frank Foster's Loud Minority Band, Harry Connick, Jr.'s Big Band, Roman Schwaller's European Sextet, and The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra.

Gardner has gone on to work with such jazz notables as the late Dizzy Gillespie, George Benson, Jon Faddis, Nancy Wilson, Tony Bennett, Joe Williams, Rufus Reid, Clark Terry, Kenny Barron, Stefon Harris and James Moody.

Critics have described him as "having a way of moving past the notes in a solo and getting into formal realms that make sense and heighten interest."[2] Another critic describes him as "Soulful and Intelligent, a tremendous talent with a vivid and unusual imagination."[3]

As a composer and arranger, Gardner's music has been featured with The Count Basie Orchestra.[4]

Since 1989, Derrick has written for and led his own sextet, Derrick Gardner & the Jazz Prophets.[5] In 2008, Gardner signed the group to Indianapolis jazz label Owl Studios and has since released two albums on the label, 2008's A Ride to the Other Side, and 2009's Echoes of Ethnicity, which was the winner of the Best Jazz Album award at the 9th Annual Independent Music Awards "Echoes of Ethnicity"[6]

As of July 2011, Gardner is associate professor of trumpet in the University of Manitoba's Jazz Studies program.[7]


Year Artist Title Label
1992 Count Basie Orchestra Live at El Morocco Telarc Jazz
2000 George Gee Swingin' Away Zort Music
2001 Craig Bailey Brooklyn Evidence Music
2003 Stefon Harris The Grand Unification Theory Blue Note Records
2003 Lizz Wright Salt Verve Music Group
2003 Derek Gardner & The Jazz Prophets Slim Goodie Impact Jazz
2003 Harry Connick, Jr. Harry For the Holidays Columbia Records
2003 Harry Connick, Jr. Only You Columbia Records
2006 Harry Connick, Jr. Chanson Du Vieux Carre Columbia Records
2007 Harry Connick, Jr. Oh, My Nola Columbia Records
2007 Brad Leali Jazz Orchestra Maria Juanez TCB Music
2007 Ron Di Salvio Essence Of Green: A Tribute To Kind Of Blue Origin Records
2008 Derek Gardner & The Jazz Prophets A Ride to the Other Side... Owl Studios
2009 Derek Gardner & The Jazz Prophets Echoes of Ethnicity Owl Studios


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