Baltimore hottest trumpeter, Clarence Ward III leads some of the finest ensembles to be heard on the East Coast. He is a major and deeply respected figure in Charm City, commanding respect from fellow musicians, students and jazz fans. When he steps onstage, it is only a matter of time before sparks will be flying!
Ward’s “old school” training and extensive gigging and touring experience have given him the chops and vision to soar as a performer and bandleader. He currently plays sax, trumpet and flugelhorn and his heartfelt style is reminiscent of Roy Hargrove. One of Baltimore’s most inspiring jam session leaders, he is also lighting fires under the next generation of musicians and vocalists.
Mentored by award-winning educator Charles Funn, Ward attended Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, learning “the history of jazz on the saxophone.” He won numerous awards in high school and a scholarship to University of Maryland, Eastern Shore. After a stint in the Army, he represented UMES at two IAJE festivals, giving him the opportunity to record with Jimmy Cobb. He has toured extensively and worked with such diverse artists as Gladys Knight, Nancy Wilson, Aretha Franklin and R&B soul singer Ledisi and jazz greats Stanley Turrentine, Gary Bartz, Robert Glasper, Dennis Chambers and Tim Warfield.