Artist Affiliate: Jazz Percussion Instructor
Since arriving in Atlanta in August, 2008, Justin Chesarek, a transplant from rural Pennsylvania, has made quite a name for himself. He isn't your average session drummer. While frequently playing gigs with Gary Motley, Gordon Vernick, Will Scruggs, and some of the city's finest big bands, Justin also flexes his composing muscles with his group The Tree-O of Love, who maintain a regular Wednesday night gig at Churchill Grounds, Atlanta's premier jazz club.
Pulling diverse influences from jazz, classical, rock, and world music, Justin writes and plays music with emotion, putting his artistry and talent in every note and beat he comes across. The end product is jazz - the virtuosity of Bebop and a retro-modern mindset oozing with musicality and a beat that gets the inner ear thumpin'. Justin speaks of how composing as a drummer allows him to supply more of a concept of drums in melody and gives him the opportunity to inject different rhythms and colors.
Consorting with members of jazz royalty including Houston Person, Jerry Bergonzi, and Johnny O'Neal, just to name a few, Justin is regulary asked to perform with some of the biggest names around.
A graduate of Slippery Rock University, Slippery Rock, PA., Justin holds a Bachelors of Music in Education. Under the direction of Dr. Stephen Hawk, Justin completed a tw-week European tour, making appearances at the Montreaux Jazz Festival and the North Sea Jazz Festival.
Justin finished his Masters of Music in Jazz Studies in May, 2010 at Georgia State University and currently teaches at Emory University and Kennesaw State University. He is on the board of directors for the Atlanta Lovers of Music Association. Justin endorses Vic Firth drum sticks, brushes, and mallets.