The Charleston Jazz Orchestra (CJO) is an eighteen-piece big band made up of many of the finest musicians in the Charleston area. They all have extensive resumes and have played in a great variety of groups and venues around the world. Now in its eighth season, the CJO continues to refine its sound. It has firmly established itself as the Lowcountry’s resident big band ensemble. The orchestra debuted in March of 2008 under the name and direction of Charlton Singleton, its conductor and music director, and it has been electrifying audiences ever since. Now in its eighth year, CJO has proven its place in Charleston’s music culture with continuous well-attended shows. CJO performs all genres of jazz. Its repertoire comprises blues, swing, Afro Cuban, pop, straight ahead, Latin, the Great American Songbook and sacred.
CJO is produced, presented and managed by Jazz Artists of Charleston (JAC), a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote musical awareness and education, including the recognition and preservation of the history of jazz, in the City of Charleston through performances, special events and educational outreach. The orchestra is an entertaining, educational and a stellar exemplar of the rich history and legacy of jazz in Charleston. Given Charleston’s place in the history of jazz, America’s most original art form and its most significant cultural export over the last 100 years, the Charleston Jazz Orchestra represents the continuation of a musical tradition begun about a century and a half ago in coastal South Carolina.