John Daversa

Title/Position: Assistant Professor of Music, Chair, Department of Studio Music and Jazz


Why did you choose music as your career?

Since I can remember, I have been deeply passionate and moved by music. I think, feel, and hear music from the moment I wake up until I go to sleep; it fuels me. For me, life is too precious a gift to pursue anything else. There is no plan “B”.

Finish the statement, “Music is…”

expression of the human experience through sound.

What do you hope to pass on to students at Frost?

Every human being is exquisitely unique, possessing infinite pathways of success. Aim to approach every task and every moment with immense excitement, creativity, joy, humility, integrity, gratitude, without expectation and watch what happens. What you want for yourself, give freely to others. Our musicianship is simply an extension and expression of our level of consciousness.

What would a prospective student be surprised to learn about you?

I love Rock, Pop, Country, Hip-hop, Soul, & Gospel music!

What is your favorite quote ABOUT you?

“Studying with John Daversa is like jumping into the ocean; it’s completely open, renewing, and the depths of the experience can be endless.  Every encounter I have with John is one that leaves me feeling as if I have re-realized my path and know how to take advantage of the detours. I am constantly learning from John’s concepts and his music. He doesn’t just teach his students how to become better musicians, but how to be honest and expressive artists and happier human beings.”
~Sam Wilkes

Short Biography
John Daversa is assistant professor of music and chair of the Department of Studio Music and Jazz at the University of Miami Frost School of Music where he also conducts the award-winning Frost Concert Jazz Band. A versatile and internationally respected performer (trumpet/EVI), composer, arranger, producer, bandleader, educator, and recording artist, Daversa joined the Frost faculty in August 2013. He previously taught at California State University, Northridge (CSUN) and University of Southern California (USC). He is a winner of the Herb Alpert Award, David Joel Miller Award, the National Trumpet Competition, the ITG Jazz Soloist Competition, and was a finalist in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition. His celebrated and distinctive musical perspective has been a passport to performances on world stages such as The Today Show, Late Nite with David Letterman, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Monterey Jazz Festival, Montreal Jazz Festival, Montreux Festival, and the Playboy Jazz Festival, to name a few.  He has also performed or recorded with artists such as Fiona Apple, Burt Bacharach, Michael Bublé, Dori Caymi, Joe Cocker, Andraé Crouch, Sheryl Crow, Dr. Dre, Bob Mintzer Big Band, and The Yellowjackets. In 1996, he founded the John Daversa Big Band that released its first studio album, Junk Wagon: The Big Band Album in 2011 to critical acclaim, winning Best in Show and Awards of Excellence in Creativity/Originality and Production in The Global Music Awards. His sophomore album for BFM Jazz, Artful Joy, (2012) features Gretchen Parlato and Bob Mintzer. Daversa earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from The University of California, Los Angeles, a Master of Fine Arts degree in Jazz Studies at California Institute of the Arts, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Jazz Studies at the University of Southern California.

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Contact Information:

  • John Daversa
  • Phone: 305 284-4012
  • Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
  • Office Location: PLF North 319

Mailing Address:

  • Frost School of Music
  • P.O. Box 248165
  • Coral Gables, FL 33124-7610

Courier Address:

  • Frost School of Music
  • Patricia Louise Frost Music Studios North
  • 5499 San Amaro Drive
  • P.L.F North 319
  • Coral Gables, FL 33146