Michael Mwenso, Vocalist
Vocalist Michael Mwenso was born in 1984 in Sierra Leone, West Africa, and began singing and playing piano at age eleven, a year after moving to London, England. He began to develop his love for jazz at an early age by attending concerts performed by such greats as Betty Carter, Elvin Jones, and Johnny Griffin. Michael developed a relationship in his childhood years with the King of Soul, James Brown, when he would perform in London. He often allowed Michael to sing with him when on tour in Europe. While enrolled in the Sylvia Young Theatre School Michael took up the trombone to enhance his musicianship. At age sixteen, he left school to lead his own bands and perform in various clubs including parts of Asia, with local jazz groups. Michael has won various music competitions, such as the Royal Northern College of Music award, and the Arts Educational Young People’s award. He has participated and achieved national and international recognition for his achievements. After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Michael was asked to be a vocalist in the play “Katrina,” a production by Jericho House in London In 2007, he was invited to run the jam sessions at world renowned Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, which later became a four night residency at the club. Michael also developed a radio program and an educational program for children to study jazz at Ronnie Scott’s. In late 2010, Michael was personally asked by Wynton Marsalis to join the programming team at Jazz at Lincoln Center and head the After-Hours program at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, where he currently is employed. In his growing yet remarkable career, Michael has performed with Jon Hendricks, Jamie Cullum, Reginald Veal, Maceo Parker, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Wynton Marsalis, and many others.