Dr. Javier Nero is a jazz trombonist, composer, arranger, and educator whose musicianship has received significant recognition. Nero has won first place in 4 international jazz solo competitions including the 2011 International Trombone Association’s Carl Fontana Competition, the ITA’s 2013 JJ Johnson Competition, the 2014 American Trombone Workshop National Jazz Solo Competition, and the 2015 Texas State Trombone Symposium Jazz Trombone Competition. Nero was also 1 of 3 finalists nationwide selected to compete in the 2018 Curtis Fuller Jazz Trombone Competition in Detroit, Michigan, and has been a finalist in the University of North Texas jazz trombone competition 2 years in a row 2019/2020. Nero is also slated to perform on board the Jazz Cruise in 2023 alongside artists such as John Clayton, Christian McBride, Randy Brecker, Kurt Elling, and many more.
Currently based in Washington, DC, Nero is busy as both a sideman and bandleader in the greater DMV area. He recently relocated to the area from New York City after winning the lead trombone position in the US Army Band’s premier musical unit: “The Pershing’s Own.” Nero performs as part of the pop element with the US Army Blues, a big band comprised of some of the nations most talented musicians. In NYC, Nero performed regularly with The Robert Edwards Big Band, Steven Feifke Big Band, Remy Le Boeuf’s Assembly of Shadows, Manuel Valera Jazz Orchestra, Lucas Pino’s No-Net Nonet, the Eyal Vilner Big Band, and many other jazz and classical ensembles. Nero also leads two of his own ensembles “The Javier Nero Septet” and “The Javier Nero Jazz Orchestra.” Both bands perform all original compositions and arrangements.
Nero collaborated and recorded with multiple Grammy award- winning musicians in Miami and the greater South Florida area including Brian Lynch, John Daversa, and Shelly Berg. Nero also performed with many local staples in the Miami jazz community such as Martin Bejerano, Errol Rackipov, Felipe Lamoglia, Tal Cohen, and Jean Caze. Nero has also held the lead trombone position in the award-winning Frost Concert Jazz Band at the University of Miami.
His classical training and versatility have enabled him to perform in various styles and genres alike, ranging from small jazz combos to symphony orchestras. Most recently Nero held the trombone position on the Off-Broadway production of “The Secret Life of Bees.” He has also performed and arranged music for a special performance at Carnegie Hall celebrating the music of Stephen Sondheim featuring singer Titus Burgess. Nero has also been a regular member of the award winning Haitian band “KLASS” which tours the US, Canada, the Caribbean, South America, and France.
Nero’s compositions and arrangements have also earned various awards and accolades including Downbeat Magazine’s Student Music Awards, participation in the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Program, and the Banff Centre’s international workshop in jazz and creative music. Nero’s composition “Tesseract” for jazz orchestra was the winner of the 2018 Ithaca College Composer Contest which featured drummer Matt Wilson, and his composition “Kemet” was an honorable mention in 2019 Ithaca College Jazz Composition Contest, which featured Jazz at Lincoln Center’s lead trombonist, Vincent Gardner. Multiple Grammy award-winning trumpeter Brian Lynch calls Nero’s compositions: “modern, sophisticated yet accessible, pleasing the player and listener alike.” He has written compositions and arrangements that were performed and recorded by vocalist Veronica Swift in the 2015 Thelonious Monk Competition finals, and featured on her recent 2019 album “Confessions.” He has also written for the Frost Symphony Orchestra, the Concert Jazz Band, Studio Jazz Orchestra, Jazz Vocal 1, Extensions, The Juilliard Jazz Orchestra, The Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra, the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra, the “Make More Noise” trombone duo at Ball State University, and many more.
Nero currently holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Juilliard School, a Master of Music from University of Miami in Studio/Jazz Writing, and graduated in May 2017 with a Doctor of Musical Arts degree with a cognate (minor) in classical trombone performance at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami.