Jazz in the Community for Your Social Wellbeing, Featuring the Dynamic and Powerful Dre Barnes Quartet (Friday, May 6, 5–7PM, Newark, NJ) — Jersey Indie

Gregory Burrus
5 min readMay 3, 2022


By Gregory Burrus | Posted Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Time to come out to meet and greet with friends, family, neighbors and jazz lovers. A time to affirm… this is an event to build wholeness in our community! Please join us, as the music will be swinging and slammin’.

Not so long ago, the Weequahic Park community building sorely needed an upgrade to complement everything the public grounds had to offer. The Essex County executive, with some much-needed input and help from South Ward community leaders, got to work to envision a new building. Once the county secured a grant from the state to fund construction for a new facility, the project broke ground in December 2020. Nine months after construction commenced, local, county and state leaders descended upon the new building, named the Feldman Middleton Jr. Community Center, to dedicate what Gov. Phil Murphy called the new “crown jewel” of the South Ward.

This high-use park and its facilities are an absolute beauty and the community is very proud of the jewel. This Friday, the community will join in a gathering for Social Wellbeing! After all we have been through, it’s time to affirm each other and build wholeness in our lives. Come join us and rekindle old friendships and build new relationships while enjoying the community and enveloping yourself in some truly swinging, fantastic jazz, refreshments, and goodwill!

This is a free Community Jazz Event. Register today and let us know you are coming through, and enjoy these professional musicians listed below that will be performing for you at this event.

Born in Philadelphia, Dre Barnes started piano lessons at a young age and developed a good ear for jazz. While a teenager, Dre performed with his high school jazz and ensemble and performed in various venues within and outside the school. Barnes attended William Paterson University to study music and further his opportunities to play jazz. Dre went on to further his studies at Rutgers University graduate program where he studied under jazz master pianist Kenny Barron.

Upon graduation from Rutgers University, Barnes formed a trio and performed at several venues in the Tri-State area. Barnes has performed with a wide array of artists including; vocalist LaDee Streeter, saxophonists Willie Williams, Don Braden, and Stacey Dilliard, Bassists Curtis Lundy, and the T.S. Monk Septet to name a few. Barnes’ most recent recording “Wandering Spirits” features drummer Lewis Nash and Bassist Reuben Rogers. Barnes notes Cedar Walton, John Hicks and the late Mulgrew Miller as primary influences.

“Dre Barnes is an impressive jazz pianist and composer who delivers his choice notes with a firm touch and potent rhythmic heft” Zan Stewart, The Star Ledger.

Read more: www.drebarnes.studio

Saxophonist, arranger and vocalist Lance Bryant performs in the New York/New Jersey area. When Lance is not performing his own music he is touring with revered South African pianist, Abdullah Ibrahim, performing and recording as saxophonist with fellow New York area players, teaching and writing commissioned arrangements for other artists and bands. Lance comes out of Markham, Illinois, a small town near Chicago. He received his formal music education at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, where he studied saxophone, composition and arranging. After moving to New York City in the mid. 1980s, Lance continued his education, studying saxophone and arranging privately with Frank Foster, the former director of the Count Basie Orchestra. He also studied composition with Bruce Adolphe of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society. In 1990 Lance began his decade-long relationship with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra and in 1993 became the Orchestra’s Musical Director and Principal Arranger. Lance also made his film debut in Spike Lee’s Malcolm X and traveled extensively with Phyllis Hyman, Jon Hendricks, Pete “LaRocca” Sims, Wallace Roney, Abdulah Ibrahim, Bootsy Collins, James Williams and others. In the early summer of 2000, Lance was selected as an on-stage musician for the Broadway production of the musical review Swing!, which received six Toni nominations.

Read more: www.lancebryant.com

Started playing drums at the age of 3 years old. Began performing with many gospel choirs and groups in the New York area for over 30 years. Has performed with many artists and genres including jazz, gospel, funk, rock, R&B, latin, reggae, pop, and marching. Has shared the stage with artists such as Sonny Rollins, Clark Terry, Stevie Wonder, George Benson, Gary Bartz, and many others. Was entered in the “Who’s Who in Newark Jazz” section of the book, “America’s Music, Jazz in Newark”, and also “The Encyclopedia of Newark Jazz”. Both books are authored by Barbara Kukla. Has performed with his quintet to a sold-out crowd at “Thelonious Jazz Club” in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Has performed abroad at the “Coronet” in London, GB; the “Blue Note” in Milan, IT; and also in the country of Kazakhstan (former Soviet Union). Has performed with recording artists Crown Heights Affair, Ronny Jordan, and Roy Meriwether.

Drums/Actor. Crown Heights Affair, Ronny Jordan, Sonny Rollins, Rhoda Scott. 50+ movies & TV shows. Sir G. Earl Grice Drummer/Actor (New York, NY) Has appeared in 50+ movies and television shows as an actor.

Read more: www.allaboutjazz.com/musicians/sir-g-earl-grice

Double bassist David Kingsnorth received his MA in Music from Montclair State University, studying with Linda McKnight and twice winning the Cali School Writing Award. He holds bachelor’s degrees in Mathematics and Music from the University of California, Berkeley. He is an active performer in both the jazz and classical music genres, having performed with Oscar Brown Jr., Richard Wyands, Frank Jackson, New Jersey Ballet and the Summit Symphony.

And David Kingsnorth, bass, is known for his stellar work with guitarist Rick Stone & pianist Ted Kooshian. Has performed at venues such as PAPILLON 25 Restaurant and Martini Bar, Live At Mezzrow, and numerous other venues around the area.

Read more: www.montclair.edu

Be informed, come enjoy some great jazz, build political awareness, and improve your social being as you connect with others in our community. May 6, 5–7 PM.

Gregory Burrus is a local live music ambassador, producer, promoter, event planner, and community partner. He combines his extensive corporate business and technology expertise with his love of live music and being a strong community advocate.

I love writing about it all. My mission is to help community groups, live music bands, and local nonprofits, reach their goals and accomplish their missions while enjoying the day-to-day process of life.



Originally published at https://www.jerseyindie.com on May 3, 2022.



Gregory Burrus

Gregory Burrus is a local live music ambassador, producer, promoter, curator, event planner, and community partner. Stay up to date on future events