Recognized in both the jazz vocal and instrumental worlds, Darmon Meader is a highly respected vocalist, arranger and saxophonist. Darmon has achieved international recognition as the founder, musical director, chief arranger, composer, producer, saxophonist, and vocalist with New York Voices. As a member of New York Voices, he has released numerous recordings on the GRP, RCA/Victor, Concord and MCGJazz labels. In the fall of 2007, New York Voices released their long-awaited MCGJazz release “A Day Like This,” and in January of 2008, Darmon released his much anticipated debut solo CD, And So Am I. Darmon’s first solo project is a collection of jazz standards and original works, which reflects his varied interests and skills as a singer, saxophonist, writer and arranger. Although the entire project is steeped in the jazz tradition, the CD includes a wide variety of styles, orchestration approaches and concepts. Darmon’s second solo project, titled “Losing My Mind” will be released in January of 2023. A mixture of standards and originals, this new project was recorded during the pandemic, and features Darmon’s vocal, sax, composing and arranging skills.
Darmon’s three most recent projects with NYV are “New York Voices, Live with the WDR Big Band” (2013, Palmetto Records), “Let It Snow” (2013 Five Cent Records) and “Reminiscing in Tempo” (2019 Original’s Arts). In addition to Darmon’s vocal and sax performances, all three recordings feature his exemplary vocal arrangements, and the Christmas project also features Darmon’s extensive orchestration skills.
In 2015, Darmon joined forces with Amy London, Holli Ross and Dylan Pramuk on the critically acclaimed “Royal Bopsters Project” CD (Motéma), which is a nod to the vocalese tradition. The recording features legendary vocalists Mark Murphy, Annie Ross, Jon Hendricks, Sheila Jordan and Bob Dorough, and includes a number of Darmon’s arrangements. Allen Morrison (Downbeat) wrote: “Extraordinary…The Royal Bopsters Project vividly makes the case for a revival of the art of vocalese.”
With New York Voices, Darmon has collaborated with a variety of artists including Ray Brown, Bernadette Peters, George Benson, Maureen McGovern, Don Sebesky, Nancy Wilson, Ann Hampton Callaway, Jim Hall, Paquito D’Rivera and the Count Basie Orchestra. He has toured internationally, performing at such renowned venues as Carnegie Hall, Montreux Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival, Montreal Jazz Festival and Blue Note Jazz Clubs (New York and Japan). In addition to Darmon’s NYV touring and recording commitments, he is increasingly busy as a soloist, sideman, studio musician and composer. In addition, Darmon is actively involved in music education, working as a clinician and guest artist at both the high school and university levels. Darmon is currently an adjunct faculty member at Indiana University, in the Jazz Vocal department. He has been the guest conductor for numerous All-State Jazz Ensembles including New York, California, Colorado, Arizona, Illinois, New Jersey, Iowa and Louisiana, and has made artist-in-residence appearances at numerous schools, including Northwestern University, University of Louisville, American River College, Humber College and University of Georgia. Darmon has also taught at numerous domestic and international music workshops including the Inzigkoven Vocal Jazz Workshop in Germany, various IAJE Teacher’s Training Institutes, and the annual New York Voices Vocal Jazz Camp. Many of Darmon’s choral, vocal jazz, and instrumental arrangements are available through the following publishers: Carl Fischer Music, Shawnee Press, Hal Leonard, Edition Ferrimontana, Alfred Music, Belwin Mills, Anchor Music and UNC JazzPress.