Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Neville, Chris

Neville, Chris, piano, organ, synthesizer; b. Boston, MA, 15 October 1955. He grew up in Boston and in West Bath, Maine; since 1987 he's been living in the Boston are full time.

Neville has attracted much attention through his work with jazz legend Benny Carter.  The classically trained artist was something of a child prodigy, having enrolled at the New England Conservatory at age six.  He later studied at the University of Maine-Augusta and the Berklee College of Music. Chris has long been a favorite of audiences in the New England area.  He performed and recorded for nearly a decade with singer-songwriter David Mallett, as well as leading his own groups and accompanying such notables as Dizzy Gillespie, Al Cohn, Sonny Stitt and Richie Cole during their swings through the region.  Neville has performed in the orchestras of over 30 touring Broadway musicals, including a yearlong tour with Donny Osmond in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Neville's presence in the house band during Benny Carter's 1988 visit to Boston has led to an ongoing musical relationship.  In 1995 Chris toured Japan with Carter.  1996 had several highlights: performances with Carter at New York's Lincoln Center, in Los Angeles, Germany, and Thailand. 1997 included several appearances with Benny across the US. Chris was educated at the New England Conservatory of Music (Preparatory Department) 1962-71, Berklee College of Music 1974-75, 1976, and University of Maine-Augusta 1975-76 (A.S./Music). He's performed in concert with Sonny Stitt, Dizzy Gillespie, Al Cohn, Claudio Roditi, Mark Murphy, Nick Brignola, John LaPorta, Richie Cole, Chuck Findley, Alan Dawson, Herb Pomeroy, Dick Johnson, Steve Nelson, Phil Woods, Harry "Sweets" Edison, Plas Johnson, Warren Vache, Jimmy Heath, Harry Allen, Bobby Shew, Joe Wilder, Scott Hamilton, Clark Terry, Greg Hopkins, Ken Peplowski, Rebecca Parris, Mick Goodrick, Bill Pierce, Wynton Marsalis, Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra, and Greg Abate. He has also played in many theatrical productions and accompanied Moody Blues, Connie Francis, Lesley Gore, Jim Bailey, Ink Spots, The Coasters, Stars of the Lawrence Welk Show, Mary Cleere Haran, Marlene Ver Planck, Frank Gorshin, Bobby Vinton, Smokey Robinson, Bobby Rydell, Michael Crawford, Aretha Franklin, Jerry Vale, Al Martino, Joni Mitchell, Brian Wilson, Martin Short, Buddy Greco and Bob Newhart.

Recordings:
From the Greenhouse  (1994); Look, Stop and Listen (1999); Songs We Like (2003)
As sideperson:
David Mallett: Vital Signs (1986), For a Lifetime (1988); Benny Carter & Phil Woods: My Man Benny, My Man Phil  (1990); Benny Carter: Harlem Renaissance (1992, 1993 Grammy winner), Legends (1993); Billy Novick: Swing So Softly  (1993); Greg Abate & Richie Cole: Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde  (1995); Dan Weiner: Exchanges  (1996); Benny Carter: Songbook (1996); Benny Carter & Phil Woods: Another Time, Another Place (1996, also assistant producer); Benny Carter: New York Nights (1997, also assistant producer), Songbook Vol. 2 (1997); Joe Wilder: Among Friends (2003)

Bibliography:
George Kanzler, Newark Star-Ledger (October 14, 1994)
Bob Blumenthal, Atlantic Monthly (February 1996)
Philip Elwood, San Francisco Examiner (March 8, 1996)
Zan Stewart, Down Beat (July 1996)
Bob Blumenthal, Boston Globe (March 16, 1996)
Ben Ratliff, New York Times (October 26, 1996)
John McDonough, Down Beat (January 1997)
Robert Tate, Jazz Now (February 1997)
Russ Chase, IAJRC Journal  (Summer 1997)

Contact information:
PO Box 5084
Framingham, MA 01701 USA
chris@chrisneville.com
TEL: (508) 875-4793 FAX: (508) 820-2795

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