The award winning TSU jazz ensembles Big Band, All-Star Combo, Latin Jazz, and Vocal Jazz, are produced out of Texas Southern University's jazz studies program under the direction of Horrace Young


The TSU jazz staff is comprised of top professionals and educators in full-time and adjunct capacities along with Howard Harris.  They are: Bert Cross II, jazz theory and vocal jazz; Marvin Sparks, jazz history and Latin jazz; Frank Murry, combo and double bass; Frank Rodriguez, guitar; Bobby Henschen, Piano; Brent Nabors, graduate assistant.


Today’s TSU ensembles continue the award winning tradition set by the TSU Jazz big band, winner of virtually every competitive collegiate jazz festival in the country. Among recordings featuring the TSU jazz groups are: Tribute, Third Ward Vibration Society , And the Band Played On , and Makin’ It Happen.


Among the distinguished professionals and legendary artists that matriculated at TSU are: The Jazz Crusaders, Barrie Hall, Douglas Harris, Ronnie Laws, Kirk Whalum, Richard Lee, Ronald Thornton, Samuel Jackson, Anita Moore, Shelly Carroll, Frank Lacy, Andrae Hayward, Joseph Woodsen, Paul Carr, Horace Young, Myron Jackson, Bernard Pierre, Eric Elder, Nicoya Polar, Al Campbell, Kyle Turner, and many more.


Notable artists that the TSU Jazz groups have opened for include, Phyllis Hymen, Sarah Vaughn, George Benson, Nancy Wilson, David Sanchez, Avishai Cohen, the Jazz Crusaders, and the Duke Ellington Orchestra, with former TSU Jazz Ensemble member, Barrie Lee Hall as conductor.


Students at TSU have the option of majoring in music with jazz specialty .  Other jazz courses not mentioned above are in the areas of arranging, composition, music business, and improvisation.


The jazz studies program is offered through the Department of Music,The Department of Music is within the College of Liberal Arts and Behavioral Sciences,  Dr. Danille Taylor, Dean.  The TSU Jazz Ensemble was named by its initial director, Lanny Steele.  The jazz studies curriculum was established during the administration of Dr. Priscilla D. Slade, former president of Texas Southern University.

For additional information, please contact:

Horrace Young
Dept. of Music
Texas Southern University
3100 Cleburne Street
Houston, TX, 77004
Phone: (713) 313-7316

Jazz Studies Website

Last Updated: 1/17/13