Chris Dingman

Chris Dingman began piano and percussion studies at an early age in his hometown of San Jose, CA. Upon moving to the east coast at the age of 18, he discovered the instrument that would become his life’s passion: the vibraphone. Since then, Chris has had the opportunity to perform, study, and travel with many of the greatest jazz musicians of all time. As a composer, performer, and teacher, Chris fuses numerous cultural and stylistic influences into a progressive approach to the vibraphone in improvisational music.

In 2007, Chris received his Master of Music degree from the prestigious Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Performance at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Chris was one of only seven musicians selected by Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, and Terence Blanchard to participate in the two year program starting in 2005. At the Institute, Chris had the opportunity to study with Terence Blanchard, Ron Carter, Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, Jerry Bergonzi, Wynton Marsalis, Jason Moran, Lewis Nash, Hal Crook, Stefan Harris, John Magnussen, Vince Mendoza, Russell Ferrante, and many others.

Chris received his B.A. with honors in music from Wesleyan University in 2002. At Wesleyan, Chris studied intensively with vibraphonist Jay Hoggard, drummer Pheeroan AkLaff, composer/multi-instrumentalist Anthony Braxton, and mridangist David Nelson. Chris was heavily involved in the world music program at Wesleyan, studying South Indian, West African, Korean, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian music. In the summer of 2000, his studies brought him to Kerala, India to study mridangam and South Indian classical music.

In November of 2005, Chris traveled with the Monk Institute ensemble on a U.S. State Department tour of Vietnam, where they performed with Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, and Nneena Freelon in concerts and master classes in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. In January of 2007, Chris traveled again with Hancock and Shorter, this time to Mumbai, Calcutta, New Delhi, and Agra, India, where they performed for capacity crowds and presented clinics at the Ravi Shankar Institute in Delhi and St. John’s School in Mumbai.

Chris has recently moved back to New York City and is currently working in groups led by Ambrose Akinmusire, Harris Eisenstadt, Steve Lehman, Adam Rudolph, Tyshawn Sorey, Keith Witty, and many others. His most recent recording efforts as a sideman include the albums On Meaning by Steve Lehman, and Prelude: to Cora by Ambrose Akinmusire. As a leader, Chris is working on compositions for two new projects, to be debuted in 2008.
from Chris Dingman

Related News

Our latest release: Mise en Abime from the Steve Lehman Octet was not only the lead review in the August Downbeat, it received a rare 5 star rating! In his review, John Corbett writes: “I’m rarely moved to say something like this, but Steve Lehman’s work is required listening for the next generation.”

Read the full review HERE.

posted on June 30, 2014 by Intern


Special thanks to Jazz Times and the New York Times for their support:

New York Times Year End Best of List
Nat Chinen
Steve Lehman - Travail, Transformation & Flow #1
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To Vol.1, #3
Ben Ratliff
Steve Lehman - Travail, Transformation & Flow #5

Jazz Times Top 50 Releases of 2009
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To Vol.1, # 4
Steve Lehman - Travail, Transformation & Flow #11 Best of Jazz 2009
Steve Lehman - Travail, Transformation & Flow #6
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To Vol.1, #7

posted on December 21, 2009 by Intern


Year end polls are starting to come in. We would like to thank the following critics for their support:

Bill Milkowski
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To, Vol. 1, # 1

Steve Feeney
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To Vol.1, # 3

Jason Crane
Steve Lehman - Travail, Transformation & Flow, # 9

Michael J. West
Steve Lehman - Travail, Transformation & Flow, # 7

Howard Mandel
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To, Vol. 1, # 1
Steve Lehman Octet - Travail, Transformation, and Flow, # 5

Hank Shteamer
Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To, Volume 1, # 6

David R. Adler
Steve Lehman Octet - Travail Transformation & Flow, # 5

Christian Broecking Henry Threadgill Zooid - This Brings Us To, Vol. 1, # 2
Steve Lehman Octet - Travail, Transformation, and Flow, # 3

We would also like the thank Nate Chinen for choosing Travail, Transformation, and Flow, and This Brings Us To, Vol. 1 as his number one and two picks. Click here to check out the ongoing conversation.

Finally, a special thanks to Seth Colter Walls for citing Travail, Transformation, and Flow in his Newsweek article, Jazz Is Dead. Long Live Jazz.

posted on December 14, 2009 by Intern


Steve Lehman’s Travail, Transformation, and Flow was featured in an enthusiastic review on NPR’s Fresh Air today. Critic Kevin Whitehead said “In Jazz like any art form, there are historical moments when it seems like all the angles have been covered and there’s nothing left to explore. And then someone comes with a new idea or a new influence that points out a fresh direction.” Thanks, Steve for paving a new way for the music!

Now back to our Henry Threadgill sale. Make sure you pick up a copy of Travail while you’re at it! (See below for details)

posted on September 23, 2009 by Yulun


We never get tired of support from the New York Times, especially when it is as positive as Nate Chinen’s review of Steve Lehman’s On Meaning. From the most recent Critic’s Choice column Nate describes the results of the recording date as “The layered complexity of his music attests to some careful calibration, but the playing reflects something else: a spirit of lunging abandon constrained by collective purpose.” Regarding other label favorites, “The album’s chief relationship is between Mr. Lehman and Tyshawn Sorey, an impulsive yet exacting drummer; together they make up two-thirds of Fieldwork, a separate group that has made a science of rhythmic convolution.” Further wets our appetite for 2008, as Fieldwork goes into the studio this Friday to start work on their third recording.

From the pages of Jazz Times, Chris Kelsey’s review of Amir ElSaffar’s Two Rivers appropriately sums up Amir and the recording with these lines, “ElSaffar’s band (Rudresh Mahanthappa, alto sax; Nasheet Waits, drums; Carlo DeRosa, bass; Tareq Abboushi, buzuq and percussion; Zaafer Tawil, oud, violin, dumbek) has nary a weak link… There’s not the faintest hint of dabbling here; ElSaffar knows from whence he came, in every respect.”

posted on December 19, 2007 by Seth

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