By Litchfield Performing Arts, a not-for-profit educational charity.

Jeff Tain Watts Trio

Jeff “Tain” Watts majored in classical percussion at Pittsburgh’s Duquesne University where he was primarily a timpanist. He later attended Berklee School of Music. He joined the Wynton Marsalis Quartet in 1981 and proceeded to win three Grammy Awards with the ensemble for Black Codes From The Underground, J Mood and Marsalis Standard Time. Watts left Wynton Marsalis in 1988. After working with George Benson, Harry Connick. Jr. and McCoy Tyner, he joined the Branford Marsalis Quartet in 1989, winning Grammys for I Heard You Twice the First Time and Contemporary Jazz. He has an extensive discography as a sideman and ten albums as a leader.

In the film and television industry, Watts has appeared as a musician on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and as an actor in Spike Lee’s Mo Better Blues. He joined Kenny Garrett’s band after returning to New York in 1995 and continued to record and tour with Branford Marsalis as well as Danilo Perez, Michael Brecker, Betty Carter, Kenny Kirkland, Courtney Pine, Geri Allen, Alice Coltrane, Greg Osby, McCoy Tyner, Steve Coleman, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Harry Connick Jr, and Ravi Coltrane.

Along with explosive power, blinding speed and mastery of complex rhythms and time signatures, Watts brings a rare sense of elegance, tried-by-fire composure, and a gritty street funk to his music. His artistic ingenuity expresses itself in his incomparable technique, sense of swing, and an extraordinary ability to imbue his music with

grace and elegant repose. A true jazz innovator, Watts never fails to deliver.

Jeff “Tain” Watts is a 2017 Guggenheim Fellow in Music Composition, a recipient of seven Grammy awards, and was twice voted Drummer of the Year by Modern Drummer Magazine.

This is Jeff Watt’s first appearance at Litchfield.  He is joined her by Trio mates, Orlando le Fleming on bass and world renowned guitarist Paul Bollenback.  Paul has a special place in the hearts of fans and campers at Litchfield as a long-time member of the Litchfield Jazz Camp faculty.


  • July 28, 2018
  • 8:30 pm - 9:30 pm
  • Main Stage, Goshen Fairgrounds

Main Stage, Goshen Fairgrounds

By Car:
The Goshen Fairgrounds is located in the northwest corner of Connecticut, on the right approximately 1/2 mile south of the center of Goshen on Route 63. The Litchfield Jazz Festival is held at the Goshen Fairgrounds and FREE parking for the Festival is at the Goshen Fairgrounds Fields, directly across the street from the Fairgrounds. It’s a lovely drive from any direction!

Address for Google Maps:
116 Old Middle Street
Goshen, CT 06756

HANDICAP PARKING is located directly on the Festival grounds. There will be ample signs to direct handicap patrons where to park.

By Train:
It’s easy, relaxing and affordable to get to Goshen on Metro-North Railroad from Grand Central Station in New York City. Take the Harlem Line Train to the Metro-North's TenMile River stop in Amenia, NY, just 28 miles from Goshen where you can meet one of the Kent/Goshen area livery services (see list below). For Metro-North schedules and tickets visit

For questions email or call 860-361-6285.

By Plane:
Goshen is approximately 38 miles from Bradley International Airport in Connecticut, 100 miles from Laguardia Airport and from John F. Kennedy Airport, both in New York. Once you arrive, you may need a livery service. Below are recommended services.

Livery Services:
Mention Litchfield Jazz when you call for a 10% discount on a round trip.

Mention Litchfield Jazz when you call for a 10% discount.
Mention Litchfield Jazz when you call for a 10% discount.
Mention Litchfield Jazz when you call for a 10% discount.

Learn more