Saxophonist, vocalist and band leader
Jason Justice is a saxophone player, educator, and arts activist from Denver, CO. His long resume as a performer includes multiple styles as a musician and work as an actor in theater. During his studies at Metro State College he co-founded and managed the Jazz Celebration at Metro State, an educational jazz festival that brought numerous middle and high school bands together with local and national music professionals.
It was during his time managing the Jazz Celebration that he realized there was little representation at the Jazz Celebration from schools in the city of Denver. In response, Jason founded Instrumentos de la Libertad, or in English, Instruments of Freedom, a Denver based 501(c)(3) that brings music lessons and instruments to Denver kids free of charge. An ambitious program that Jason sees as vital to keeping the arts alive and creating music consumers of the future, Instrumentos de la Libertad has a simple plan to level the playing field for kids one student at a time.
Jason’s professional experience includes work with Diana Castro and the Big Time, Mondo Bizarro, the Catfish Kray Blues Band, The Queen City Jazz Band, the UCD Claim Jumpers Dixieland Jazz Band, as well as his own ensembles of straight-ahead jazz.
Jason is endorsed by RS Berkeley Instruments. He is an active saxophone teacher for learners of all ages and abilities, and his website is full of resources. Check out his website at www.jasonjustice.com.
Co-band leader, vocalist and guitarist
T-Bone is a highly-regarded Denver-based guitarist, clinician and teacher originally from California. He has performed in numerous groups throughout California and Colorado including well-known East Coast band leader and saxophonist, Sunny Stanton, as well as in his Latin-based project, Mundo de Soul. T-Bone’s playing is stylistically diverse, articulate and passionate.
T received a bachelor’s degree in Classical Guitar Performance from the Southern California Conservatory of Music. Additionally he studied at the Jamie Faunt-Chick Corea School of Music in Los Angeles. T also studied privately with national greats Joe Pass, Joe Dioreo, Robin Ford and Jamie Finle.
T has also played with the Erica Brown Blues Band, the Jason Justice Trio, Los Lunaticos, and Puerto de Plata (Don Jose).
Alex Wilkerson is Gumbo le Funque’s bassist and is a recent arrival to Colorado. He has toured with southern country-rock band Austin Law, comedian Bill Engvall, country artist John Rich, LA jazz/reggae act Thelonious Dub, Yogi (the original drummer from the Gap Band), and many more. Alex holds a bachelor’s degree in bass performance from the Musician’s Institute in Los Angeles, as well as a master’s degree in bass performance from Azusa Pacific University. Alex was honorably discharged from the United States Air Force.
“It’s all about the booty shakin’,” as Alex is wont to say.
Drummer Jason McDonough is a lifelong musician, having cut his percussion teeth early on in school bands. After high school graduation, he enlisted in the United States Navy and served two tours, performing in over 35 countries in Europe, Asia and Africa and for heads of state in the NATO band. He was stationed in New Orleans for four years, where he quickly caught the attention of the area’s music scene, even playing the main stage at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Jason has played with some of New Orleans’ music royalty, including jazz trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis,NOLA variety artist Dr. Bone and jazz/swing artist Johnny Angel. One of Jason’s fondest experiences was playing with the legendary Uncle Lionel Batiste, longstanding member of the Treme Brass Band and a founder of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. Jason has studied with contemporary jazz luminary Johnny Vidacovich (Astral Project and Dr. John).
Gumbo le Funque maintains that Jason is the only drummer in Colorado that can actually play an authentic New Orleans street beat, but he’s also well versed in a myriad of styles, including reggae, West African polyrhythmic forms and blues shuffle (if cajoled).