Christopher Dean Sullivan
…“Sullivan’s a bassist whose authoritative and bluesy bending’s of the notes honor his affection for legends such as Slam Stewart as well as Ray Brown.” ~ Steve Monroe, Jazz Journalists Association
The critically acclaimed Chicago Ill born, Pittsburgh Pa raised bassist Christopher Dean Sullivan is well traveled throughout the U.S. and abroad. Christopher started his career in Pittsburgh , PA.
He went to Germany for a few years and came back to Pittsburgh. While in Pittsburgh he honed his craft as a bassist during his time with the Jazz Workshop Inc., located in the Homewood district, under the direction of Harold Young Sr, and the Archives, located in the Hill district, developed by Errol “Mobutu” Reynolds (Grant Green, Johnny Lytle), where Chris in his words stated …“I got the honor to perform with guitarist Grant Green on three different occasions, through my association with the Archives.”
Chris went on to become the bass and music theory instructor, for the Jazz Workshop Inc., and the Archives. During his time span in Pittsburgh, Christopher Dean Sullivan produced and hosted, along with Visions business partner, songwriter/vocalist, Aubrey Bruce, the first Warner Communication Award winning television show
“The Tree of Arts Alive”. The award was presented for the best in culture and arts programming. The guest roster consist of artists such as: Grand Master Flash, Kool and the Gang, Stanley Clark, Patrice Rushen, George Duke, Chaka Khan, Chic Corea, and many others, as well as the various Pittsburgh talents, civic leaders, and entrepreneurs. Eventually The Tree of Arts became a component of The Jazz Workshop Inc. Mr. Sullivan continues to work and collaborate with the 46 year + Jazz Workshop Inc. now under the executive directorship of Harold’s daughter Dr. Jacqueline L. Young
Chris quickly became known for his own unique approach to playing the bass. He formed local commercial groups that would go on to open up concerts for such bands of notoriety as the Ohio Players, The Bar-Kays, New Birth, The Tavares, and others. Chris decided to expand his musical horizons and started performing with the jazz notables of the Pittsburgh, PA region; Joe Harris (Dizzy Gillispe), Roger Humphries (Horace Silver), Nathan Davis (Pitt University), arranger Arthur Powell, Pete Henderson, Larry Mcgee, Nelson Harrison (Count Basie), J. C. Moses (Eric Dolphy), Geri Allen, Carl Arter, Jothan Callins (Sun Rah), and others. Soon he achieved the opportunity to perform and travel with music notables Lou Soloff, Jimmy Owens, Johnny Lytle, and others for a number of years before locating to New York City.
“Bassist Christopher Dean Sullivan plays with a natural looseness, easily adapting to the great variety of prevailing directions of the tune.”
~ Karl Ackermann, All About Jazz
Christopher’s discography is varied, covering 45’s, albums and CD’s. Christopher Sullivan has appeared in TV commercials and movies; “The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh”, the original “Dawn of the Dead”; which is celebrating its 41st year in June 2019 at the Monroeville Mall in Pittsburgh PA where the movie was made, and Chis is one of the celebrity guest, Netflix “The Good Cop” series, HBO "Deuce", Starz "Billions",
Starz "PowerBook III; Raising Kanan", HBO "White House Plumbers", various commercials, as well as photo shoots for magazines, such as Vanity Fair with Grammy Award winner Janet Jackson. Christopher Dean Sullivan continued to received various New York State community and arts services, municipal, congressional, NYS Assembly Merit, and Senate Proclamation awards, NAACP Community award, Boys and Girls Club Outstanding Service in the Arts Award, as well as the prestigious New York State Orange County Arts Council Champion for the Arts Award. These honors were based on the programs, workshops and clinics he created, conducted, and facilitated in learning institutions and community centers throughout New York State.
While residing in the New York region Christopher Dean Sullivan has had the opportunity to share the stage in performance and/or record with Archie Shepp, Sheila Jordan, Carter Jefferson, Yusef Lateef, Odean Pope, Stanley Jordan, Freddie Hubbard, Billy Hart, Christian McBride, Stanley Jordan,
Sonny Fortune, Horace Parlan, Carl Grubbs, Irene Reid, Richie Cole, Jon Faddis, Vanessa Rubin,
Eddie Henderson, Bob Gluck, Charli Persip, Henry Grimes, Pete Seeger, Roy Campbell, Della Griffin, Barbara Sfraga, Joe Lovano, Cotton Club All Star Band, Pucho and the Latin Soul Brothers,
Israel “Cachao” Lopez, Stanley Turrentine, just to name a few.
Chris’ discography is vast in genres, where he is on a plethora of collaborative recordings, and featured on other the principles productions. These recording range in genre from the jazz traditional art forms to open free style expressions, as well as Latin jazz, Poetry/Spoken Word,
contemporary and commercial categories.
…“Sullivan’s bass, whether bowed, plucked, or strummed, gives the music an almost ritualistic power.” ~ Phil Freeman, The Wire (UK)
Christopher is on the TMO Entertainment booking roster, along with bassist Avery Sharpe, trumpeter James Zollar, drummer Yoron Israel, GQ, Alfa Anderson(Chic), drummer Bernard "Pretty" Purdie, and many others. The Bassist Christopher Dean Sullivan now leads his own music ensembles, as well as continuing to be involved in various recording projects, performing traditional jazz, producing tributes, writing original compositions and arrangements, and performing contemporary music with jazzy R&B and Latin Jazz mixtures. He also produces and host his podcast CDS PARADIGM on
Anchor https://anchor.fm/cds-paradigm, and 9 other internet platforms. A Podcast verve consisting of new and known music artists of various genres, Spoken Word, interviews, messaging, and commentary based on current news, community, human interest, and more. On CDS PARADIGM there are some Amazing and Thought Provoking subjects and topics intertwined within an ebullient format.
“Sullivan's pulsing movement seamlessly guides the piece through multiple transitions. A bass solo and some chirpy electronics open the original Sullivan composition, "Spirit Unleashed." ~ Steve Hoffman, Music Forums
”Chris is one of the most dynamic musical professionals in the business.
He has an unmatched bassist talent and quality production ability."
~ Aquanetta Wright, Ferry Godmother Productions”
“... Sullivan plays not just the upright bass strings but the bass itself, throwing himself into the performance not to draw the spotlight, but to impart a palpable joie de vive to go with his rhythmic, rippling (think Charlie Haden, somewhat) bass tones."
“…Sullivan’s a bassist whose authoritative and bluesy bending’s of the notes honor his affection for legends such as Slam Stewart as well as Ray Brown.”
~ Steve Monroe, Jazz Journalists Association
“Christopher Dean Sullivan makes a strong case for his essential presence in the ensemble with, yes, some ostinatos but also with an openly free interactive melodic sense that goes perfectly well with the wide-ranging ideas expressed by his bandmates.”
~ Grego Applegate Edwards, Gapplegate Music Review