BIOGRAPHY

"A good dose of personal humility and devotion to a higher power can de-clutter the life and chosen form of artistic expression.  In the case of pianist Sharp Radway, a pure spirit of artistic expression is revealed..."  

DAN McCLENAGHAN

All About Jazz

Sharp Radway is a pianist/composer/arranger/author who is a native of Hartford, Connecticut and currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.  He remains in demand throughout the country and abroad.  He is a protégé of Dr. Randy Weston. Sharp is a formidable and seasoned bandleader, heading various groups of his own (ie. his quintet, quartet, trio, Music Of The Streets, Sharp Radway's Gospel Jazz Group, Sharp Radway's Big Band, and various vocal and instrumental duos.)  Sharp has worked with several Jazz luminaries and forefathers of the genre.  Among them  are Yusef Lateef, Benny Golson, Red Holloway, Slide Hampton, Curtis Fuller, James Spaulding, Louis Hayes, Candido Camero, Benny Powell, Eddie Henderson, Hamiet Bluiett, Peewee Ellis, Steve Turre,  Fred Wesley, Frank Lacy, Kiane Zawadi, Bucky Pizzarelli, Diane Schuur, Joe Lee Wilson, Kevin Mahogany, Nnenna Freelon, Greg Bandy, Ben Dixon, Winard Harper, Leopoldo Fleming, Russell Gunn, Nicolas Payton, and Randy Brecker and many more.  He served as music director, pianist, and arranger for The Celebration of Lionel Hampton Big Band and The New York City Ska Orchestra.  In addition to playing the piano he is also a prolific composer and arranger.  

 

Sharp Radway's roots can be found in The Church.  He began playing in church as a child, first playing alto saxophone and later playing drums.  As a teenager he played the piano and keyboard in church and it was also then that he first began working with choirs.  Later on he gained experience playing the Hammond and pipe organs.  Sharp has done extensive work in the church, serving as music director for Methodist, A.M.E., and Baptist Churches; and has served as pianist and/or organist for the Pentecostal Church and A.M.E. Zion Church.  He has also worked in Catholic, Presbyterian, Congregational, and Non-Denominational Churches.  Sharp has done extensive work training choirs over his many years of service in the church.  He has performed in concert opening for renowned Gospel artists Donnie McClurkin, J.C. White, Tramaine Hawkins, Edwin Hawkins, and others.  Sharp is the founder and director of The Sharp Radway Gospel Chorale.

 

Sharp has also appeared in film with Mos Def, Beyonce Knowles, Cedric the Entertainer,  and several others in the major motion picture “Cadillac Records”.  He acted and performed in the historic Off-Broadway play “The Connection” under the direction of Judith Malina.  In addition to being a seasoned performer he is also author of the book “Musicianship 101 (What They Don’t Tell You In School)”, published by Outskirts Press.  His debut recording is “Hymns and Things (Introspection and Reflection)” and he recently released "Black Woman (A Conversation). Sharp has also taught extensively, and currently continues to enjoy teaching a roster of professional musicians/artists in addition to lecturing and conducting seminars centered around his book "Musicianship 101 (What They Don't Tell You In School)".

 

A list of Sharp's New York Venue appearances include (but is not limited to): The Blue Note, Dizzy's Coca Cola Club, Small's Jazz Club, Birdland, Smoke Jazz Club, The Iridium, Sista's Place, Jazz 966, The Lenox Lounge, Minton's Playhouse, St. Nicks Pub, Showmans,  Swing 46, Fat Cat, The Kitano, Zinc Bar, and a host of others.  He has performed in a litany of music festivals both domestically and internationally.

PHOTO BY YAW MFONI