John Jackson is a university-trained and award-winning musician who began playing the guitar at the age of 13. He has studied and performed on the guitar as his primary focus since he was accepted to the University of Georgia in 2006. At UGA, he graduated Magna Cum Laude earning both a Bachelor’s and Master's Degree in Guitar Performance as a student of renowned classical guitarist and educator John Sutherland. Furthermore, he studied jazz theory and improvisation with Steve Dancz, the Director of Jazz Studies at UGA.
Mr. Jackson has a wide range of field experience as a professional guitarist – he has worked as house guitarist for several restaurants, played guitar for a variety of musicals and show choirs, and performed with multiple orchestras, choirs, jazz and rock groups, and chamber ensembles. He has performed for many important political figures, including various congressmen and senators, as well as the governor of Mississippi. He has premiered several new works written for the guitar, and provided music for a variety of events and venues including: recitals, weddings, corporate events, charity benefits, parties, church services, restaurants, hotels, and jazz bars.
Mr. Jackson's awards include winning first place, outstanding performer, and convention recitalist in the 2013 GMTA Competition, as well as first prize in the Ira E. Mashburn Competition for New and Electronic Music in 2006. He has participated in masterclasses with many famous musicians including Christopher Parkening, Pepe Romero, Sharon Isbin, Wycliffe Gordon, Marcus Pintrup of The Lincoln Center Jazz band, and the Tokyo String Quartet. In addition, he has taught multiple competition finalists and first prize winning guitar students.
Mr. Jackson is a member of the full-time music faculty at Hinds Community College, and he serves as chair of the guitar division of the Mississippi Music Teachers Association. He also teaches private guitar lessons, performs recitals, judges guitar competitions, and holds masterclasses in concert halls and universities across the southeastern United States.
The acoustic jazz duo String Theory was formed in the Jackson Mississippi area in 2015. The group is a mainstay around the metro area, and holds performances across the southeastern United States. String Theory feels equally at home performing in classical concert halls, restaurants and bars, or outdoor music festivals. The duo consists of John Jackson on guitar and Fritz Martin on bass. Both members are classically trained professional performers and educators who strive to create easily enjoyable and accessible jazz music that still maintains its own unique character. The group achieves this by blending the catchy melodies and exciting improvisational elements of jazz, with the refined detail and vivid contrasts of classical music. With a repertoire that consists of anything from traditional jazz standards, blues numbers, and rare jazz pieces, to arrangements of classical guitar and double bass works, the group promises to have something everyone can enjoy.
For more information please visit the String Theory page of the website here.