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With John D'Earth
At Miller's, May 13, 2010
|Born||February 26, 1971|
West Virginia, U.S.
|Associated acts||John D'Earth, Corey Harris|
Millner was given his first "kid guitar" at the age of three. His parents went to "lots of shows". When he was four they took him to a Taj Mahal show and he got up on stage and played his plastic guitar. This was his very first "gig".
As a five-year-old he appeared playing banjo in a Yale University documentary entitled Banjo Man with musicians Taj Mahal and Afro-Appalachian banjoist Uncle John Homer. Jamal also spent a considerable amount of his childhood in Newark, New Jersey where he was exposed to early hip hop culture — rhyming, breakdancing, and graffiti — as well as jazz. Jamal studied blues guitar and vocals with West Virginia blues musician Nat Reese.
Millner made his professional debut performance at age 14 with keyboardist and trumpeter Deaton Jones. He was a member of the Bluefield State College jazz ensemble under the direction of Don Caruth while still attending Bluefield High School.
Millner received his degree from The University of Virginia in African-American Studies/Music in 1993. He studied with Nat Reese, John Jackson, Howard Armstrong, Martin Williams (compiler of The Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz), Roland Wiggins (jazz theoretician), Walter Ross, Scott DeVeaux, Judith Shatin and John D'earth. As a member of the 5x5, he toured extensively throughout Europe, Canada, Africa, and Australia. He has been the one of the regular guitarists for the John D'earth ensemble since 1995 and is a founding member of the band Phatness.
I'd like to meet Johann Sebastian Bach. He has to be one of the greatest musicians and artists of the whole of human expression, but he was also a regular guy who had to watch his kids and play crappy gigs and work at churches where people didn't appreciate his work. He seemed to have a happy life, though. His music is Baroque, which is supposed to be old fashioned, but to me it sounds so modern. Timeless, I guess. To me it doesn't sound like any particular period. Like disco.— Jamal Millner
- Phatness (1997)
- 1996 Between White and Black, Barbara Martin
- 2003 Sleeping Lines, Plink
- 2009 Chioggia Beat, Morwenna Lasko
- Pareles, John (13 June 2002). "A Bouncy Collage of Styles, Each Given a Personal Twist". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
- Oksenhorn, Stewart (6 February 2004). "In and Out of Africa: Corey Harris digs the roots of the blues". Aspen Times. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
- "Checking in with Jamal Millner - C-VILLE Weekly". C-VILLE Weekly. 2011-02-22. Retrieved 2017-11-16.
- "Jamal Millner | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 16 November 2017.