10 April 1971, Springfield, Pennsylvania, USA. Encouraged by his father, John, a multi-instrumentalist, DeFrancesco took up music as a small child. Taking an influence from his organ-playing father Papa John, the younger DeFrancesco started playing and listening to Jimmy Smith and Jimmy McGriff from an early age. He attracted considerable local attention even before had reached his teens, sitting in and holding his own with seasoned jazzmen. At the age of 10 he played for Brother Jack McDuff and a little later for Richard Groove Holmes, impressing both these veterans with his neophyte skills. At the age of 16, he was awarded third place in a contest at the renowned Thelonious Monk Institute. This resulted in his being signed by Columbia Records, for whom he made five well received, if unremarkable, albums between 1989 and 1993. Of vital significance to DeFrancescos musical education was his being hired by Miles Davis with whom he...
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