Enter content here


Enter content here

E-PRESS KIT

Enter content here

                                                                                                                        WILL MATTHEWSKansas City native Will Matthews has been playing the guitar since age thirteen. By age fifteen Matthews began playing in church and performing in R&B bands, taking regional tours during the summer months when school was not in session. During these formidable years Matthews started listening to all the great pioneers of the jazz guitar, from Kenny Burrell, Wes Montgomery and George Benson to Grant Green, Pat Martino, Charlie Christian and others. By age eighteen Matthews was traveling and touring with groups internationally and making a career in the music business. During the 1970’s – 80’s Matthews was performing with such notable artists  as Arthur Prysock, Carmel Jones, Jimmy Witherspoon, Claude “Fiddler” Williams, Jay McShann, Queen Bey, Luqman Hamza, Ahmad Alaadeen, The Bloodstones and The New Breed Orchestra, while in the 1990’s he also worked with Freda Payne, Carmen Bradford, Charles Earland, Ronnell Bright and others.In 1996 Matthews joined the Legendary Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of former Basie band lead trombonist Grover Mitchell, to fill the coveted chair of the late legendary guitarist and composer, Freddie Green, who performed with the Orchestra for over fifty years.Matthews has played on many studio and live recordings with the Orchestra, including two “Grammy Winning” recordings, ‘Count Basie Orchestra Live at Manchestra Guild’ and ‘Count Plays Duke’, as well as the “Grammy Nominated” recording titled ‘Swing Shift’. The guitarist has performed at every major jazz festival, concert hall, theatre and night club in the world, as well as the rare honor of performing at the Royal Palace in Bangkok, Thailand for King Bhumbibol in 1996. He has also performed for President William J. Clinton’s second inaugural in Washington, DC 1997.  Matthews has also had the honor of performing for First Lady Michelle Obama at a Campaign Fundraiser for President Barack Obama in Kansas City, Missouri at the American Jazz Museum March 2012.Since joining the Orchestra Matthews has performed with a who’s who list of artists such as the late Joe Williams, Frank Foster, Harry “Sweets” Edison, Frank Wess, Benny Powell, Curtis Fuller, Benny Carter, Hank Jones, Milt Jackson, Lou Donaldson, Kenny Burrell, George Benson, Rufus Reid, Jimmy Cobb, Jon Hendricks, Ernie Andrews, Nancy Wilson, Mary Stallings, Marlena Shaw, Patti Austin, Dianne Reeves, Nnenna Freelon, Vanessa Rubin, Rosemary Clooney, Carla Cook, Dorothy Donegan, Diane Shuur, Kurt Elling,  Kevin Mahogany, Geri Allen, Ledisi, Chick Corea, John Faddis, Wynton Marsalis, Gary Bartz, Regina Carter, Marcus Roberts, Llew Matthews, Norman Simmons, Joey DeFrancesco, Tom Scott, John Pizzarelli and many others.The guitarist released his debut CD, Will Matthews “Solo” in November 2000, and his second CD project titled ‘Count On Swingin’ was released in 2009 on the ARC label featuring legendary Organist Mel Rhyne, from the original Wes Montgomery Trio, along with former Art Blakey Jazz Messengers member, Bobby Watson and Drummer Kenny Phelps.Matthews was also one of several guest artist featured in a 2010 Documentary film broadcast on the PBS network titled From Separate To Equal The Creation of Truman Medical Center  that also featured a song composed by the guitarist titled Mikayla’s Song, from his Count On Swingin’ project. Matthews also holds the guitar chair in the 18th Vine St. Big Band directed by Bobby Watson and performs with his own Organ Trio and Quartet. Endorsements include D’Angelico Guitars Japan and D’Addario Strings. 

Kansas City native Will Matthews has been playing the guitar since age thirteen. By age fifteen Matthews began playing in church and performing in R&B bands, taking regional tours during the summer months when school was not in session. During these formidable years Matthews started listening to all the great pioneers of the jazz guitar, from Kenny Burrell, Wes Montgomery and George Benson to Grant Green, Pat Martino Charlie Christian and many others. By age eighteen Matthews was traveling and touring with groups nationally and internationally making a career for himself in the music business.

During the 1970's-80's Matthews was performing with such notable artists as Arthur Prysock, Jay McShann, Carmel Jones, Jimmy Witherspoon, Claude "Fiddler" Williams, Queen Bey, Luqman Hamza, Ahmad Alaadeen, The Bloodstones and The New Breed Orchestra while later in the early to mid 1990's with Freda Payne, Carmen Bradford, Charles Earland, Ronnell Bright, the New Benny Moten Orchestra and others.

In 1996 Matthews joined the Legendary Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of former Basie band lead trombonist Grover Mitchell to fill the coveted chair of the late legendary guitarist and composer, Freddie Green, who performed with the Orchestra for fifty years and served as the anchor for the All American Rhytm Section.

Matthews has played guitar on many studio and live recordings with the Orchestra, including two "Grammy Winning" recordings, 'Count Basie Orchestra Live at Manchester Guild' in 1997, and 'Count Plays Duke' in 1999, as well as the "Grammy Nominated" recording titled 'Swing Shift' in 2000. The guitarist has performed at every major jazz festival, concert hall, theatre and night club in the world, as well as the rare honor of performing at the Royal Palace in Bangkok, Thailand for King Bhumbibol in 1996.  He has also performed for President William J. Clinton's second inaugural in Washington, DC 1997. Matthews has also had the distinct honor of performing for the First Lady Michelle Obama at a Campaign Fundraiser for President Barack Obama in Kansas City, MO at the American Jazz Museum March 2012.

 Since joining the Orchestra Matthews has performed with a who's who list of artists such as Joe Williams, Frank Foster, Harry 'Sweets' Edison, Frank Wess, Benny Powell, Curtis Fuller, Benny Carter, Hank Jones, Milt jackson, Lou Donaldson, Kenny Burrell, George Benson, Rufus Reid, Jimmy Cobb, Jon Hendricks, Ernie Andrews, Nancy Wilson, Mary Stallings, Marlena Shaw, Patti Austin, Dianne Reeves, Nnenna Freelon, Vanessa Rubin, Rosemary Clooney, Carla Cook, Dorothy Donegan, Diane Schuur, Kurt Elling, Kevin Mahogany, Ledisi, Geri Allen, Marcus Roberts, Chick Corea, Llew Matthews, Norman Simmons, Joey DeFrancesco, John Faddis, Wynton Marsalis, Gary Bartz, Tom Scott, Regina Carter, John Pizzarelli and many others.

The guitarist released his debut cd, Will Matthews 'Solo' in November 2000, and his second cd project titled 'Count On Swingin' was released in 2009 on the ARC label featuring legendary Organist Mel Rhyne from the original Wes Montgomery Trio, along with former Art Blakey Jazz Messenger member, Bobby Watson and Indianapolis drummer Kenny Phelps.

Matthews was also one of several guest artists featured in a 2010 Documentary film broadcast on the PBS network titled From Separate to Equal, The Creation of Truman Medical Center, that also featured a song composed by the guitarist titled 'Mikayla's Song', from his Count on Swingin' project.

Matthews also holds the guitar chair for the 18th Vine St. Big Band directed by Bobby Watson, and performs with his own Organ Trio and Quartet. Endorsements include D'Angelico Guitars of Japan and D'Addario Strings.

Enter subhead content here

Enter content here

Enter supporting content here

HOMEE-PRESS KITBIOGRAPHYDISCOGRAPHYMEDIAPHOTO GALLERY