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The Jazz Room at the Stage Door Theater

Kobie Watkins plays PHILLY JOE JONES

Nov 17 - 18, 2017 Stage Door Theater

  • Pricing:
    $14 in advance, $16 at the door.
  • Presented by:


JAZZ ROOM: Kobie Watkins plays PHILLY JOE JONES 

(jazz drumming, bebop standards)

After much-acclaim and sold-out performances, Charlotte’s Jazz Arts Initiative’s (JAI) monthly series—The Jazz Room @ The Stage Door Theater – continues season 10 on November 17 & 18 with renowned drummer Kobie Watkins paying tribute to legendary jazz drummer PHILLY JOE JONES. The Stage Door Theater is part of Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, at the corner of 5th and College in Uptown Charlotte.

A Philadelphia native, jazz drummer Joseph Jones nicknamed himself “Philly Joe” Jones distinguish himself from Count Basie’s drummer, Jo Jones. In the late 1940’s he became the house drummer at Café Society in New York City, where he played with the leading bebop musicians of the day. Jones played and toured with the Miles Davis Quintet in the mid-1950’s. Davis acknowledged that Jones was his favorite drummer, and stated that he would always listen for Jones in other drummers. From 1958 on Jones worked as a leader, but continued to work as a sideman with other musicians, including Bill Evans and Hank Mobley. Evans, like Davis, also said that Jones was his all-time favorite drummer. After residing and playing in London and Paris from 1967 to 1972, Jones returned to Philadelphia and led the fusion group Le Grand Prix; toured with Bill Evans; recorded for Galaxy Records; worked with Red Garland; and founded and led the group Dameronia, dedicated to the composer Tadd Dameron, until his death in 1985 at the age of 62.


A native of Chicago, Illinois, Kobie received his BME from Vandercook College of Music and Masters of Music from Northwestern University in Jazz Pedagogy. He became a public school band and music teacher by day and by night played gigs around the Chicago land area and throughout the United States. Kobie has cultivated dynamic relationships with his peers in and out of the Jazz, Latin, and Gospel community as a drummer, percussionist and a mentor. He has played and recorded with numerous artists including jazz legend Sonny Rollins, Branford Marsalis, Joe Lovano, Curtis Fuller, Bob Mintzer, Jim Hall, John Patitucci, Arturo Sandoval, George Coleman, Ira Sullivan, Sonny Fortune, Roy Hargrove, Kurt Elling, Fred Anderson, Christian McBride, and Ron Perrillo. Kobie has toured extensively in Africa, Europe, Asia, Canada, South America and the United States. His educational and mentoring relationships include working with Wynton Marsalis at a high school jazz clinic in Chicago, the Ravinia mentors program for the Chicago Public High School students, and “Attention for Boys” a MusicAlive mentoring and teaching program, founded by Orbert Davis and Mark Ingram for inner-city youth ages 8 to 18 years.

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