“Fred Wesley found notoriety playing with James Brown. So it might surprise you that he actually has some jazz cred of his own.
That’s how and why he’s part of the lineup for the annual University of Pittsburgh Jazz Seminar, which takes place this week on campus and culminates in a concert Saturday.
“I really play jazz,” he says. “I’m a jazz player that plays funk.”
Raised in Mobile, Ala., Mr. Wesley discovered music early — his father had a big band and he wanted to play in it. Because the group lacked trombonists, his father told him that if he learned that instrument he could have a spot.
“It’s been stuck to me ever since,” Mr. Wesley says.“