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Trombonist Reggie Watkins played piano, trumpet, and tuba before taking
up the trombone and attending West Virginia University for
music studies. In Morgantown West Virginia in the early 1990s
Watkins was a band member and apprentice to bassist,
composer, and band leader Kevin Frieson. After moving to
Pittsburgh he began playing with many musicians including
drummer Roger Humphries, guitarist Jimmy Ponder and
drummer Spider Rondenelli. In 1999, Watkins joined legendary
trumpeter and band leader Maynard Ferguson. During his
tenure with Ferguson as trombonist, arranger and musical
director he played and recorded extensively for more than six
Watkins was selected as a semi-finalist for the 2003
Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition and in 2004
recorded his first album as a leader titled “A-List” as part of the
Maynard Ferguson Presents Series. In 2010 he released his
second CD “One For Miles One For Maynard” and his third in 2016
“Avid Admirer, The Jimmy Knepper Project” with Matt Parker -
sax, Orrin Evans - piano, Tuomo Uusitalo - piano, Steve
Whipple - bass and Reggie Quinerly - drums.
In 2008 Watkins joined the band of GrammyAward winner and
singer-songwriter Jason Mraz to tour the world and record
extensively for over six years.
2018 brought a once in a lifetime experience when he was
invited to play at the funeral of Aretha Franklin where he joined
the many musicians, activists, entertainers and friends of The
Queen of Soul to celebrate her life.
In addition to leading the Reggie Watkins Quartet he is also a
founding member of The Keystone Jazz Collective and a
member of The Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra, Richie Cole’s
Pittsburgh Alto Madness Orchestra, Orrin Evans’ Captain Black
Big Band and frequently tours with Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern
Jukebox. He is the founder and frontman of the the Pittsburgh
based horn section and band The Steeltown Horns.