Trombonist, pianist, bassist, arranger, educator. Born September 27, 1929 in Chicago, Illinois; died October 10, 2004 in Cheverly, Maryland.
Raised in Memphis, Tennessee, Jones attended Tennessee State University. His service in the U.S. Army (1955-1957) brought him to the Washington area, where he played in the 75th Army Band at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
He played in a variety of ensembles including the orchestras of the Howard Theater and the National Theater and later in the Howard University Jazz Repertory Orchestra, Swingworks, and the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra.
Jones earned a master’s degree in music education from Howard University and taught in the Washington public schools, first at the elementary level and then at Cardozo High School. In 1976 he was invited to join the music faculty at Federal City College, which soon thereafter became the University of the District of Columbia.
In 1984 he established the jazz studies program at UDC, and he remained its director until his death. The annual big band jazz festival hosted by the university was subsequently renamed for him.
During his tenure, the UDC big band’s repertoire consisted largely of his arrangements. His works were also performed by the Blues Alley Big Band.