Raised in a culture that focused on the senses, good food and great music were a fact of life for Jason. As a child in Southern Louisiana, Jason was exposed to the rich musical tradition of New Orleans at an early age. His grandparents, who lived in the birthplace of jazz until Jason attended college at Louisiana State University, exposed their grandchildren to all manner of music and arts. He spent long stretches of hot summers and every possible weekend in between getting a cultural education centered on enjoying the good things in life.
While improvisation was a deep interest and mystery for Jason, he chose to delay intensive study of jazz in favor of furthering his classical training through undergraduate studies at Louisiana State University. During his time at LSU, he had the honor of studying privately with Dr. Griffin Campbell, a true master of the instrument and a mentor in every sense of the word. Jason began taking occasional beginning improvisation lessons at LSU with bassist William Grimes and trumpeter Rex Richardson, who is well known for his abilities in both classical and jazz contexts.
Upon completing his Bachelors of Music at LSU in 2004, Jason took the next two years to do some deep, musical soul searching. During this time leading to his graduate studies, nearly all of his performance and musical output was freely improvised with no predetermined structure. He tried his hand at leading bands and curating gigs, and got a taste of something that he wanted more permanently.
Accepted to the University of New Orleans with a full scholarship based on his output as a free improvisor, Jason was thrilled to study the inner workings of jazz in the place of its birth. During his time studying in New Orleans, Jason was deeply influenced by his studies with Ed Petersen and Brian Seeger. Seeger, a brilliant guitarist and composer, inspired him to form his own band and compose original music. With this band as a vehicle for expression and development, Jason performed in many of the clubs he had attended as a listener in high school. In 2008, he was awarded a Masters Degree of Music in Jazz Studies from UNO.
Following his graduate studies, Jason moved to the beautiful mountains of Asheville, NC where he now resides with his lovely wife, Rose and their brand new son, Giulio. Always striving for growth, he has been studying under the mentorship of Matt Otto for four years. It is through his studies with Matt that he has been able to integrate years of learning into the development of a melodic style of playing that continues to broaden as well as deepen.