Guitarist, composer Steven Kirby (“a guitarist of rippling technique and a poetic mind”- Downbeat Magazine) has built a reputation for performing exciting, melodic, lyrical and expressive jazz as well as being active as a performer in other contemporary styles. He has appeared on numerous released recordings including three as a leader “Point Of Balance” and “North Light” (both on Challenge Records)—and “Illuminations” (on WCS records). “Illuminations” received Downbeat Magazine’s prestigious “Editors Pick” award and 4 Grammy long list nominations. He has performed and/or recorded with many of today’ most respected contemporary musicians including Chris Potter, Mike Manieri (Steps Ahead), Joe Lovano, Javon Jackson, George Garzone and others. He has toured in the U.S., Canada, Caribbean, Europe, China and Africa.
Kirby’s music has been played on over 100 radio stations in the US and internationally including features on NPR’s “Here and Now”, “Jazz with Bob Parlocha” and “Eric in the Evening”.
His jazz compositions have won awards in the International Songwriting Competition, the Billboard Song Contest and Downbeat and he is music faculty at Berklee College of Music and Wellesley College.
Steven Kirby’s “Illuminations” Project is richly textured, multi-layered, ebullient and lyrical jazz with evocative and exciting compositions and stellar musicianship.
It features a mix of original compositions, and some creative arrangements of standard tunes, using primarily a quintet of instrumentalists and a singer performing both wordless and lyrical vocals.
“Illuminations represents Kirby's biggest leap forward yet - most specifically as a writer but, equally, as a guitarist who leans towards inimitable lyricism yet also possesses the chops to burn brightly as the music demands it.”
John Kelman, (All About Jazz)