Leading a big band and featuring Bearde’s singing and storytelling, Herring’s thorough survey revisits musical developments from 1917 to the present including everything from ragtime, swing and bebop to Afro-Cuban, free and fusion styles. Works from greats such as Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis are revisited and interpreted by his all-star orchestra, which includes the likes of trumpeter and Oakland native Jon Faddis and saxophonists James Carter and Eric Alexander.
Already studying at University of California, Chico on scholarship at age 16, Herring joined the Jazz Knights, the United States Military Academy band, a year later. After relocating to New York City and studying at Long Island University, he joined cornetist Nat Adderley’s band for nearly a decade. Also spending time playing with hard bop-era titans Art Blakey, Horace Silver and Freddie Hubbard, he was able to crystallize his own distinct artistry and bandleading skills.
Having recorded 20 albums as a bandleader, Herring’s latest is 2017’s Hard Times (Smoke Sessions).