Jazzin Around 7 Artist Bios

Meet the Artists

Johnny Britt

Marvin Gaye and Miles Davis never performed together on the same stage … but imagine if they did … Singer/ Trumpeter Johnny Britt, inspired by Marvin and Miles, has brought the influence of these two giants into one conceptual album titled, Marvin Meets Miles, Vol. 1. In 2017, Johnny Britt scored big with his trumpet appearances in Oscar and Golden Globe award-winning film La La Land and the Oscar-nominated film soundtrack Hidden Figures.

Signed to Motown Records as the founder/creator/lead singer of his group Impromp2, this multi-talented singer, songwriter, producer, trumpeter, arranger, composer and educator in the entertainment industry has toured the world and recorded with some of the biggest names in the industry. Johnny received his break after studying music at the prestigious Conservatory of Versailles just outside Paris. He has since worked with the David Bowie, Quincy Jones, Luther Vandross, Josh Groban, Jennifer Lopez, Maxwell, John Legend, Common and more. He is also a member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame group Little Anthony and The Imperials.

His new release “So Hot” was released on October 24.

Lila Hood

Lila Hood is a captivating electric violinist, recording artist, string arranger, and music educator who now resides in Los Angeles. Born in Memphis, she is dedicated to increasing diversity in classical music. While a student at Georgetown University, Lila was selected for the New York String Seminar Orchestra, where she received mentoring and coaching from premier violinists. She became a founding member of the Howard University String Quartet and a student at Vanderbilt’s Blair School of Music. During her career, Lila has performed for the Jamaica Ocho Rios International Jazz Festival, Shakhar and Andrea Bocelli, recording artist Dennis Graham and his son, Drake, Blues Alley Jazz Club, L.A. Fashion Week, and the Ebony Fashion-Fair Anniversary. Recently, she performed on a track with Lady Gaga for the movie, “A Star with Born” and headlined the West Adams Jazz Festival.

After participating in classical performances, Lila felt a strong desire to explore different musical genres, including jazz, blues, rock, reggae, soul, Afro-Cuban, Latin, and hip-hop—setting the foundation for her debut project, The Blue Violin, and her current project, Dreamcatcher EP. Fulfilling a desire to give back through music, she established The Blue Violin Foundation to teach violin and piano to students from urban communities who would not otherwise be exposed to classical music.

Bill Hurd

Bill Hurd is a welcome feature at any Memphis venue catering to jazz fans. His mastery of the alto and tenor saxophone is reminiscent of Coltrane and his virtuosity on soprano and baritone sax is equally impressive. Hurd has recorded with Kirk Whalum, Isaac Hayes, Maurice White, Greg Curtis, Phil Perry, Kevin Whalum, J. Blackfoot, and Wendy Moten and with fellow legendary Memphis musicians like Floyd Newman, Rod McGaha, Rick Braun, and Lester Snell.

He is also known as Dr. William C. Hurd, a practicing Ophthalmologist. In addition to his medical degree, he has an MBA from M.I.T. and a B.S. in engineering from Notre Dame (where he was an All-American captain of the track team and named Notre Dame’s 1968 Athlete of the Year). Furthermore, Hurd has patented inventions of medical devices relating to his work as an eye surgeon.

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