James Zollar
Tribute to "The Great Composers"

James Zollar

He began playing bugle at age nine in his native Kansas City and graduated to trumpet at age 12 and after his studies at Mission Bay High School he moved to San Diego and continued at San Diego City College and the University of California.

At present James D. Zollar tours extensively as soloist with the Duke Ellington Orchestra, conducted first by the Duke's son Mercer and later his grandson Paul within the U.S. and around the globe, including annual trips to Japan.

Among his numerous professional associations, James has worked with Ray Charles, Illinois Jacquet, Charles McPherson, David Murray, Mongo Santamaria, Henry Threadgill, Lester Bowie's Brass Fantasy, Don Byron and Music For Six Musicians, Steve Coleman and the Five Elements, Panama Francis and the Savoy Sultans, Jay McShann, Eddie Cleanhead Vinson and Big Joe Turner. Since moving to New York City in 1984 he played with the Cecil McBee Quintet for five years and contributed to Tom Harrell, Weldon Erving as well as Sam Rivers' latest records.

Zollar has also been featured in Robert Altman's motion picture Kansas City, in Madonna's music video My Baby's Got a Secret as well as Spike Lee's movie Best Man. He also played on the soundtrack of The Perez Family. He's also proud to be included in The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz (Oxford University Press 1999).

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