Bio

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Derrik Jordan performing the solo from Windham Loops on 5 string electric violin with looper (July 2011).

Living in southern Vermont and playing throughout the northeast, Derrik Jordan has sung national jingles, worked with many bands and has had his songs recorded by other artists, but what really excites him is writing, recording and performing his original music for people. “Creating live music is a sacred trust. That moment of ecstatic communion when performer and audience become one is one of life’s greatest experiences,” says Jordan.

As a recording artist on Worldsoul Records, award-winning singer-songwriter and composer, multi-instrumentalist (electric violin, percussion, guitar, kalimba and piano), producer and teacher, Jordan is used to wearing a lot of hats. “Brazilliance – Everyone Loves Brazil,” a 29 track double CD, showcases the best of his original sambas and bossa novas written over the past 3 decades in the classic and timeless Brazilian style. It contains a new recording of his song “Share Your Love,” first released by Angela Bofill in 1978 on her debut album "Angie" for Arista Records. “Expecting A Miracle,” an acoustic-pop-soul CD he co-produced with Tom “T-Bone” Wolk (Hall & Oates, Saturday Night Live Band), features top NYC musicians Marc Shulman and Ben Wittman on guitar and drums. “Speak Through Me” from the CD was awarded 1st place (Gospel-Inspirational) and 2nd place overall out of 32,000 songs in the 2004 USA Songwriting Competition, the world’s leading international song contest. His CD “Touch The Earth,” an environmentally themed concept album, was produced by Jordan and he sings and plays most of the instruments on it. The songs are recorded in a variety of world music styles (reggae, afro-pop, samba, salsa and funk). “Something’s Gonna Change” from the CD won top honors as 2002 Reggae Song of the Year from Just Plain Folks, the world’s largest songwriter organization.

He has released three CDs under the name SuperString Theory (including 2007’s “SuperString Theory Goes To Senegal”), showcasing his 5-string electric violin in a variety of world fusion settings (African, Middle Eastern and Asian) with exotic instruments like hoddu, balafon, kora, didgeridoo and sitar and featuring award-winning NYC free jazz singer Lisa Sokolov and Ethiopian vocalist Helen Kerlin-Smith (aka Helen Helu). In 1992, Jordan made his national debut as a recording artist on “Right As Rain,” a CD benefiting the Rainforest Action Network that featured Jerry Garcia and Paul Winter.

He has studied percussion with master drummer Milford Graves and composition with Henry Brant at Bennington College. In his journey to further develop his craft he has traveled to Brazil, Trinidad, Ghana, Israel and Senegal. He has produced jazz, spoken word, Native American (Red Thunder Cloud - Songs And Legends Of The Catawba) and award-winning folk (Tom Neilson) and children’s independent recordings (Gary Rosen).

He performs in many bands including Tony Vacca's World Rhythms, Impulse Ensemble, Simba and Natural History. "Sky Mirror" a piece he composed for shakuhachi, string quartet and electric guitar won the Shakuhachi Chamber Music International Prize 2008. The Vermont Symphony Orchestra commissioned him for their 2009 Made In Vermont Fall Festival Tour for which he wrote "Odzihozo and the Lake." It was performed in 10 venues around Vermont in the fall of 2009.

World Fusion/Classical Music

World fusion/classical works by Derrik Jordan

"Suite For An Imaginary Country" (2016) For double string quartet and bass (15:00) in 3 movements: Dark Matter, Penta Waltz and O.G. Raga.

"Talisman" (2016) For sax quartet (6:30). Written for Asylum Quartet.

"Ten Emojis" (2016) For solo viola (13:00) Ten short movements for solo viola. Written for Liz Reid.

"Bamako Beyond" (2015) For African percussion, balafon, electric bass, string quartet and flute (7:30). One movement. A world fusion piece that brings together Crocodile River Music and The Worcester Chamber Music Society in a Malian style uptempo dance piece. For 11 musicians.

"Timbuktu" (2015) Quartet for bass clarinet, cello, flute and electric guitar with effects (5:30). A new arrangement for chamber quartet of a West African/Malian inspired piece. Written for the group Frevo of central VT.

"Ngoni Dance" (2015) Trio for harp, viola and flute (5:00). Inspired by Malian music from West Africa. The harp, viola and flute emulate the ngoni, riti and fula flute of Mali. Written for The Aureole Trio of NYC.

"Flower Kiss" (2015) For two cellos (5:15). This is an arrangement for two cellos of the 2nd movement of Astonishing Visions (see below - originally written for the VCME - a 7 piece chamber group in VT). A Brazilian inspired piece in the samba style.

"Baka Bachianas" (2015) For flute choir (piccolo, 3 flutes, alto flute, bass flute and contrabass flute) (10:30) Also an alternate version with 2 altos and one bass flute. A piece that combines the Baka Forest people's unique singing style with a Bach-like influence. Premiered by The Keene State Flute Choir in Putney, VT on April 22, 2016.

"Toubab" (2015) For string orchestra (6:30 min). A string orchestra arrangement based on the same piece originally released on the CD "SuperString Theory Goes To Senegal." Premiered in Boston by The Berklee World Strings with Eugene Friesen conducting on April 30, 2015.

"Up From The Earth" (2015) Quartet for percussion quartet (7 min). For Gonkokwe, Cuica, Kalimba and Egg shakers with simple singing part.

"Dream Of Bahia" (2014) Trio (and quartet version) for guitar, cello and flute/clarinet (4 min). Also a quartet version for guitar, cello, flute and clarinet. An instrumental arrangement of an original Brazilian ballad originally done with lyrics and released on Derrik Jordan's CD "Brazilliance." Premiered in Barton, VT on 8/16/2015 by Frevo.

"Everyone Loves Brazil" (2014) Trio for guitar, cello and flute/clarinet (5 min). An instrumental arrangement of an original Brazilian samba originally done with lyrics and released on Derrik Jordan's CD "Brazilliance."

"Pan-Afrique" (2014) Sextet for string quartet, steel pan and congas (25 min). Derrik Jordan's 3rd world fusion string quartet (plus 2) in 6 movements: In Dreamtime, The Chase, The Door Of No Return, Waves, Toil, Steel Beauty. Premiered in Columbus, OH Nov 20, 2015 by Carpe Diem String Quartet.

"Shapeshifter" (2012) Duo for violin, oboe, steel drum and bass (5 min). One movement with a one minute improvised bass solo. Dedicated to Lisa Ferrigno and Aaron Hilbun.

"Windham Loops" (2011) For full orchestra and Impulse Ensemble (world fusion trio) (30 min) In 4 movements: Food Chain, Homunculus, Sandcastles, Awakening. With 2 min improvised solos between movements for Impulse Ensemble members. Commissioned by The Windham Orchestra. Premiered June 12, 2011 in Brattleboro, VT.

"Astonishing Visions" (2010) For flute, bass clarinet/clarinet in Bb, bassoon, piano, marimba, violin and violoncello (12:30 min). In three movements: Berimbau Ghosts, Flower Kiss, Circular Rainbows. Commissioned by the Vermont Contemporary Music Ensemble. Premiered in Burlington and Montpelier, VT February 19 and 20, 2011.

The Healing Of The Waters” (2010) For chamber orchestra, 6 marimbas and 6 percussionists (13 min). In one movement. Commissioned by the Williams College World Music Department.

"Odzihozo And The Lake" (2009) For chamber orchestra - (12 min) one movement. Commissioned by the Vermont Symphony Orchestra for their "2009 Made In Vermont" Fall Festival Tour and their 75th anniversary. Performed in ten venues around Vermont in the fall of 2009.

"Welcome Santo" (2009) Sextet for string quartet, kalimba and shekere - (16 min) with optional short improvised solos for kalimba and shekere between movements. In three movements: Mbiraland, Gratitude For The Earth And Sky, That Buzzing Is The Ancestors Singing. Premiered in Brattleboro, VT June 5, 2010.

"Thorn Forest Walkabout" (2009) Trio for two cellos and dumbek (4 min) One movement. Premiered March 15, 2009 in NYC by Jessie Reagen, Eugene Carr (cellos) and David Buchbut on dumbek.

"Five Gamelans For Brass Quintet" (2008) Quintet for 2 C trumpets, french horn, trombone and tuba (16:30 min) In five movements: The Clown Prince, Orchid Forest, Shadow Puppets, Mountain Of The Gods And Goddesses, The Masked Dancer Retells An Ancient Tale. Only two movements were performed in 2009 in Brattleboro, VT.

"Walk In Beauty" (2008) For woodwind quintet - flute, oboe, clarinet, french horn and bassoon (4 min) One movement. An instrumental arrangement of Derrik Jordan's original Brazilian samba (with lyrics) of the same name from his CD Brazilliance. Premiered October 18, 2010 by Windscape in NYC at the Manhattan School Of Music.

"Sky Mirror" (2008) Sextet for string quartet, shakuhachi and electric guitar with effects (13 min) Winner of the Shakuhachi Chamber Music International Prize 2008. In three movements: Floating Clouds, Stirs The Surface, Everything Is Alive. World premier in Melbourne, Australia Dec 13, 2008.

"Four Unknowns" (2008) For string orchestra and percussion - timpani, marimba and cymbals (25 min) In four movements: Dark Matter, Tipping Point, Quantum Chaos, Monkey Mind. Premiered by The Sage City Symphony, Bennington, VT, Feb 24, 2008. Commissioned by the Sage City Symphony.

Discography

"Invitation To Xtasy" SuperString Theory (2012) World fusion featuring Derrik Jordan on 5 string electric violin with Sana Ndiaye, Forward Kwenda and others. Produced by Derrik Jordan, Worldsoul Records W0043

"Initiation" Impulse Ensemble (2010) World fusion power trio featuring Tony Vacca, Jim Matus and Derrik Jordan. Produced by Impulse Ensemble. IE001

"SuperString Theory Goes To Senegal" (2007) West African world fusion extravaganza written and recorded in Senegal and Vermont. Produced by Derrik Jordan, Worldsoul Records W0042

"Brazilliance - Everyone Loves Brazil" (2006) Double CD retrospective collection of 26 original sambas and bossa novas. Produced by Derrik Jordan, Worldsoul Records W0041

"SuperString Theory - Exotic Duets and Improvisations" (2003). Instrumental CD featuring 5-string electric violin. Produced by Derrik Jordan, Worldsoul Records WOO38

"Touch The Earth" (2002) 13 original songs, full band arrangements with horns. Produced by Derrik Jordan, Worldsoul Records WOO37

"Expecting A Miracle" (1997) Acoustic-pop-soul. 11 original songs. Produced by Tom "T-Bone" Wolk and Derrik Jordan, Worldsoul Records W0033

From "Right As Rain" (1992) A CD to benefit the Rainforest Action Network (RAN) and sponsored by Ben & Jerry's Rainforest Crunch Contains 2 of my songs - "Touch The Earth" singer, writer, producer, "Choose Your Weapon" singer, co-written with and produced by Al Mack GWE 001

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Cuts (Derrik Jordan's songs recorded by others)

"Ain't No Use" (2004), The Embers (artist) sung by Jerry Tellier, co-written by Derrik Jordan and Stephanie Lewis, Bluewater Recordings, from "Beach Music Super Collaboration Album," BLWR1001

"Harder Than It Has To Be" (2004), The Embers (artist), sung by Mark Black, co-written by Derrik Jordan and Stephanie Lewis, Bluewater Recordings from the album "Beach Music Super Collaboration Album" BLWR1001

"Whatever It Takes" (2002), O. C. Smith (artist), co-written by Derrik Jordan and Brian Hobbs, Rubyjude Records, Special collector's Limited Edition, from the album titled "I Give My Heart to You"

"Por Um Beijo Seu" (2000) Urban Oasis (artist), co-written by Derrik Jordan, Marjorie Pivar and Patricia Wilson. Quilombo QR53061

"Hooked On You" (1999), Lisa Molina (artist), co-written with Maria Christensen and Stephanie Lewis, Wave/ WVD-9502, from her album "My Love Will Be There"

"Too Much To Ask" (1999), Lisa Molina (artist) co-written by Derrik Jordan and Bette Sussman, Wave/WVD-9502, from the album "My Love Will Be There"

"Love To Spare" (1999), Stockwell Bros. (artist), from the CD, "Leave My Dreams Alone"

"All Around The World" (1999), Stockwell Bros (artist), co-written with Bryant Urban, from their CD "Leave My Dreams Alone"

"Is Anybody Out There?" (1993) Urban Speech (artist), co-written by Derrik Jordan and Danny Madden, Reprise 945152-2, from the CD "Do Something"

"Peace" (1992) Stockwell Bros (artist), from the CD "Sto Bro"

"Love Me For Today" (1984) Angela Bofill (artist), co-written by Derrik Jordan, Angela Bofill and Alan Palanker, Arista AL8-8258 from her album "Let Me Be The One"

"Share Your Love" (1978) Angela Bofill (artist), Arista GRP 5000, from the album "Angie"

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CD Production for other artists -

Tom Neilson - "Biomess" (2009) producer, violin, bass, percussion

Tom Neilson - "Another Pacifist Under Surveillance" (2007), producer, violin, bass, harmonica

Tom Neilson - "When Freedom is Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Be Free" (2005) producer, violin, bass, percussion, background vocals

King Happy - "In MY Country" (2004) producer, composed all the music to this controversial spoken word CD and played keyboards, percussion, violin, guitar, bass and sang background vocals

Tom Neilson - "Living On The Maximum Wage" (2004) producer, violin, percussion

"Simba" - (2003) producer, artist, Includes Derrik's songs "Prisoner," "Everyone Loves Brazil" and "Peace", percussion, guitar, bass, vocals, keys

Natural History - "Great Apes Of Vermont" (2003) Derrik Jordan, Jared Shapiro, Barry Hyman (artists), producer WOO39

Tom Neilson - "Spirit Of Justice" (2002) producer, violin, percussion, vocals, piano

Natural History - "Native Tongues" (2000) Derrik Jordan, Jared Shapiro, Barry Hyman (artists), producer Worldsoul W0036

Red Thunder Cloud - "Songs and Legends of the Catawba" (2000), double CD, producer, Lost Gold Records/ Worldsoul LGR 1750

Gary Rosen - "Teddy Bear's Picnic" (1999), producer, violin, percussion, background vocals, GMR 61206-39902-2

Lisa Sokolov - "Angel Rodeo" (1993), producer, violin, LHR 1007

Derrik Jordan - "Waterworld" (1988), writer, producer, Ultrasonic

Biscuit Davis - "Playing On The Moon" (1974), writer, co-writer, vocals, violin, guitar, Flying Dutchman

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Other Recordings (selected):

William Ackerman - "Meditations" (2008) percussion, Lifescapes (Artists of Note)

Tony Vacca - "Senegal-America Project" (2007), electric violin, background vocals, co-writer with Tony Vacca of "Tarot Card" World Rhythms WR0601

Jeff Oster - "True" (2007), djembe, quica, guiro, Retso Records RR11003

Dana Cunningham - "The Color of Light" (2006), percussion, Fountain Creek Music FC92321

Karen Marie Garrett - "It's About The Rose" (2006), electric violin, percussion Waterstreet Records

Jo Sallins - "Mr. Cool" (2004), electric violin on Mr. Cool's Journey and Lunar Melons (composed by Derrik Jordan)

Jo Sallins - "Bass In Ya Face" (2004), electric violin, quica, LaJaz Productions, Jaz-10 Radio Free (2003),

Radio Free Brattleboro (various artists), cut #8 - "Invitation To Ecstasy," electric violin

Lisa McCormick - "Mystery Girl" (2003), percussion

Will Ackerman - "Hearing Voices" (2001), percussion, Windham Hill 01934-11608-2

Sue Maskelaris - "Unbreakable Heart" (2001), background vocals, Jazilian Records j103-71

NRBQ - "30th Anniversay" (1999) - engineer, Rounder Records 11661-3166-2

T-Bone Wolk and Frank Morgan - "Beautiful World" (1999), percussion, background vocals,

Gary Rosen - "Cookin" (1996), background vocals, percussion, GMR 61206

"Fields Of Gold" (1995) lead vocal, (video) Your Personal Best With Elle MacPherson

Angela Bofill - "I Wanna Love Somebody" (1993), background vocals on "Te Amo" Jive 01241-4151-2

Liz Queler - "River Of Time" (1994), background vocals, Red Wall RW-2923

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Windham Loops (excerpt)