Drummer - John Cusick grew up playing rock, disco and R&B dance clubs in the Washington area. After two years on the road with a show band, he interned with some of the finest jazz musicians in the area: Keter Betts, bassist for Ella Fitzgerald, pianist John Malachi and Bill Reichenbach, drummer for the Charlie Byrd trio.
Prior to serving a term as president of the Metropolitan Washington, DC Federation of Musicians, John put together Jazz City as a concert ensemble for the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. The group was so well received they were invited back to the Kennedy Center in each of two subsequent seasons.
With John as leader, Jazz City soon found itself in constant demand for sophisticated private events where the mood and the music can turn on a dime. Says John, “I bring all of my experience to bear, with every client, to make my routine workday the most memorable day in someone’s life.”
Pianist - Deante Childers, a product of the Levine School of Music, brings energetic rhythms and lush, round chording to every musical phrase. “DJ,” who studied with world renowned jazz artist Chris Vadala and pianist Jon Ozment at the University of Maryland, has shared the stage with well-known local artists George V. Johnson, Nasar Abadey and Davey Yarborough.
He frequently anchors trios and quartets on the U Street jazz circuit and has performed in the DC Jazz Festival. Deeply committed to his Christian faith and gospel roots, he is the Hammond organist at East Friendship Baptist Church in Washington, DC and is the producer/owner of New Psalms Recording Studio.
Vocalist - Steve Washington recently released an album available on CDbaby.com titled “Right to Love,” currently enjoying radio play across the country, into Canada and as far away as Australia. Singer-actor and native Washingtonian, Steve has appeared in numerous theatrical productions including “West Side Story,” “Oklahoma” and “Godspell,” and was cast in the Arena Stage production of Stephen Sondheim’s “Merrily We Roll Along.”
Performing in a production of Sir Cameron Mackintosh's hit review "Hey Mr. Producer," Steve played the Engineer in "Ms. Saigon," Jean Valjean in "Les Miz," and the Phantom in "Phantom of the Opera." Recent jazz credits include performances at the Mandarin Oriental, Loews Madison, and the Metropolitan Room in New York City.
Bassist and Music Director - Dave Marsh, a graduate of the Duke Ellington School for the Arts, has performed around the world and shared the bill with the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, Sarah Vaughn, David Sanborn and Grover Washington Jr. He has recorded with superstar Jennifer Holiday and the Three Mo’ Tenors, and has performed in the Rehoboth and Cape May Jazz Festivals and on the Norway Jazz Cruise.
Recently Dave anchored the rhythm sections for “Five Guys Named Mo” and “Dear Evan Hansen” at Arena Stage. He is equally at home in all musical styles including jazz, gospel, R&B, Latin, Caribbean and pop, as well as musical theatre. He has taught on the music faculties of George Washington, Shepherd and Bowie State Universities and continues to teach privately.
Dave is an avid composer who has written a number of original pieces for Jazz City. “I look at every performance as a challenge,” says Dave, “to put together the right musicians, and the right music, whether for a concert, wedding or cocktail reception.”
Saxophones - Peter Fraize heads the Jazz Studies program at George Washington University. Comfortable on all the saxes, he most often plays tenor or soprano sax with Jazz City. A world-renowned musician, Peter is a veteran of the North Sea, Heineken and Gouda Jazz Festivals and has performed at numerous other venues throughout Belgium, Holland and Germany.
He was a member of the Dutch freebop quintet Scrapes, first prize winners at the Middlezee Jazz Festival. He has led several ensembles locally, has received critical acclaim in Jazz Times magazine and has won a Washington Area Music Association Award (Wammie) for “Best Contemporary Jazz Group.”
Vocalist and Songwriter - London Edge, a protégé of gospel virtuoso Nolan Williams, has appeared at Blues Alley, Bethesda Blues and Jazz and the Kennedy Center. She brings a dramatic flair to every performance, having studied musical theatre at Montgomery College and having worked as Creative Coordinator of Public Programs for the Smithsonian Institution, through theatre and song educating thousands of patrons about the civil rights movement.
As a songwriter, she has produced material for numerous local and national, gospel and neo-soul artists, and she has performed for the National Black Caucus conference, an annual, stellar political and cultural event in Washington, DC.