Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Miner, Neal

Miner, Neal, bassist, composer, band leader; b. New York City, NY, 3 February 1970. Raised on the Upper East Side of Manhattan by parents Abby Wakefield (b. Mach 6,1939 Buffalo, NY) and William Robertson Miner (b. November 14, 1932 NYC, d. Oct 18th, 2001). Bill Miner, a psychiatrist, was well known and well liked in the jazz community as a dedicated collector and researcher. Neal has one sister, Reeve Miner Washburn (b. March 9, 1964 NYC).

Neal started playing the trumpet at age 10 and switched to the electric bass at age 12 and then switched to the acoustic bass at the age of 16.  Neal was introduced to jazz by his father Bill who was a world renowned jazz record collector and discographer. Neal attended the Eastman School of Music Summer Jazz Work Shops 1985,86,87 where he studied bass with Bill Grimes. He had private studies with bassist Orin O'Brien of The New York Philharmonic 1986-88.  Graduated High School from The Interlochen Arts Academy 1989 where he studied bass with Tom Knific and Derek Weller.  Briefly attended The Manhattan School of Music 1989-1990 where he studied bass with Harvie Swartz and Don Palma. He had private studies with jazz bassist John Webber 1990-1995.  Neal starting playing full-time in the New York area at the age of 20.  From 1989-95 he was a regular bassist at Augie's Jazz Club on the Upper West Side of Manhattan accompanying such young jazz stars as Brad Meldau, Peter Bernstein, Eric Alexander, Ryan Kisor, Larry Goldings and Joe Farnsworth.  At 21 Neal played in Japan at the Star Moon Jazz Club in Fuki City for two months with vocalist Gale Allen. Around this time Neal began composing seriously and soon after stated leading his own groups featuring his original music.  In 1993-95 Neal performed regularly as a leader at the Angry Squire and later called the Squire in NYC, featuring musicians such as Joe Magnarelli, Ralph Lalama, Larry Goldings, Eric Alexander and Ryan Kisor. In 1993, Neal toured with the Ryan Kisor Quintet. They performed at The Blue Note NYC, Scullers Jazz Club in Boston, The Iowa City Jazz Festival and radio broadcasts on NPR's Live From Lincoln Center and WBGO's Jazz Set. From 1995-7, Neal founded and hosted a Sunday evening series called, The Jazz Composers Forum.  Each week Neal would feature the original music of 3 different composers and their groups, almost every week was recorded on cassette.  This series was held at Dharma, The Squire and Smalls jazz clubs. In 1997-99, Neal led his own groups every Sunday evening at Smalls jazz club featuring his original music, almost every week was recorded on cassette, and several videos were shot of the groups as well.  Neal also led groups at Smalls and Dharma on week nights and weekends featuring such greats as Eddie Locke, Bubba Brooks, Richard Wyands, Herman Foster, John Bunch, Al Harewood, Ervin Stokes, Dick Katz, Walter Perkins and Jackie Willams.In 1996-2001 Neal toured, recorded, appeared on TV and radio with with vocalist Ann Hampton Callaway.  In 1998-99 Neal toured with The Loston Harris Trio all over the U.S., Canada and the Virgin Islands and played extended engagements at the Bellagio in Las Vegas NV.  The trio performed at the St. Lucia Jazz festival backing up James Moody.  In 1999 Neal left the Loston Harris trio to become the bassist in the Jon Hendricks group in which he is still.  For many appearances and tours the group was joined by Annie Ross.  The group tours and performs at major jazz clubs, concert halls and festivals all over the U.S., Europe, South America and on the QE2.  The group appeared and performed in the film, "People I Know", staring Al Pacino and Kim Basinger as well as recording the theme music which Jon Hendricks wrote. In 2001-2 Neal performed at The Algonquin's Oak Room with Dena DeRose, Bill Henderson and Eric Comstock. In 2002 Neal played a short U.S. tour with vocalist Jane Monheit. In 2002 Neal played an extended engagement in The Carlyle at Bemmelman's Bar with the Loston Harris Trio. In 2002 Neal started his own music planning service called Manhattan Jazz Events. The service specializes in bringing New York's top jazz musicians into private and corporate functions.  Visit the web site at www.manhattanjazzevents.com. In 2002 Neal led his own groups at Smalls jazz club featuring Harry Allen, Jim Rotundi, Joe Cone and Tom Melito and a Sextet featuring Neal's original music and arrangements with orchestrations for the three horns by Chris Byars.  The group consists of Chris Byars, Ritchie Vitale, John Mosca, Steve Ash and Tom Melito. Neal Miner has performed with Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orchestra, Eric Alexander, Harry Allen, David Allyn, Peter Bernstein, Andy Bey, Bubba Brooks, Chris Byars, Ann Hampton Callaway, Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra, Bill Charlap, Dena DeRose, Bob Dorough, Mark Elf, Chris Flory, Larry Goldings, Tardo Hammer, Loston Harris, David Hazeltine, Jon Hendricks, Bill Henderson, Etta Jones, Dick Katz, Ryan Kisor, Diana Krall, Mike Ledonne, Frankie Laine, Eddie Locke, Joe Magnarelli, Pete Maliverni, Wynton Marsalis, Bill Mays,
Brad Mehldau, James Moody, Jane Monheit, Lee Musiker, Leon Parker, Annie Ross, Jim Rotundi, Kenny Washington, Michael Weiss, Richard Wyands, Jimmy Cobb, Stacey Kent, Joe Romano, Grant Stewart, Frank Wess, and the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra.

Manhattan Sounds (1992); The Bottom Line (1993); Introducing The Neal Miner Quintet; (1994); Contemplations (1999); The Real Neal (2000); The Evening Sound(2002)
As sideperson:
Randy Klein: Jazzheads (1993); Larry Goldings: For You, For Me, For Evermore (1993);
Doug White: Esplanade (1997); Mark Elf: Trickynometry (1997); Frankie Laine: Wheels Of A Dream (1997); Mark Elf: A Minor Scramble (1997); Doug White: Juniper Records Sampler (1999); Chris Bergson: Blues For Some Friends Of Mine (1999); Chris Byars: A Night at Smalls (1999); Ann Hampton Callaway: Easy Living (1999); Chris Bergson: Wait For Spring (2000); Mark Elf: Live At Smalls (2000), Dream Steppin' (2001); Doug White: The World Of Doug White (2001); Chris Byars: Night Owls (2001), Detour Ahead (2001); Annie Ross: Cool For Kids (2001); Dino Locito: Like That (2001); Michelle Conte: Lucky Me! (2002); Joe Romano: This Is The Moment(2003)

Radio broadcasts:
(WBGO) Jazz Set with The Ryan Kisor Quintet 1993
(WQXR) Jazz at Lincon Center the studio sessions with Ryan Kisor 1994
(WNYC) with Ann Hampton Calloway 1998
(WNYC) with Jon Hendricks 2000.

Television broadcasts:
Manhattan Cable TV: Mark Elf Guitar Jazz Plus 1998
Saturday Today in New York with Ann Hampton Calloway 1996
Toronto TV and Las Vegas TV with the Loston Harris trio 1999
The Isaac Mizrahi Show 2002

People I Know, with Jon Hendricks 2003
A Beautiful Mind 2001

Eastwood Jazz After Hours (live at Carnegie Hall) 1996

Theme and beds for radio:
Sirius Satellite Radio, with Kenny Washington

Feature interview on www.TalkBass.com December 2002
Neal Miner's CD "The Real Neal", profile and reviews can be viewed and sound clips can be heard on the Juniper Record web site: www.juniperrecors.com

Contact information:
Neal Miner - Bassist
229 West 26th St. 2C
New York, NY  10001
Neal Miner - Music Planner
Manhattan Jazz Events
229 West 26th St. 2C
New York, NY  10001
(212) 929-9111

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