Aquarian, lives and works in New York City

Playing professionally since age16, Juini Booth has expanded the range of the contrabass into a refined personal language of intense acoustic awareness and spatiality of sound. Firmly rooted in the forefront of the American jazz tradition, which he has helped to shape, Booth's music also integrates influences from world music, emerging beyond the boundaries of categories to express the poetics of universal humanness. His compositions reflect a masterful use of simple melodic themes developed through unexpected harmonies, unusual tonal qualities and time relationships, inviting the listener to a new level of musical perception.

Booth has performed, recorded and toured for over 40 years with jazz musicians from Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers to Tony Williams Lifetime, including many others like Albert Ayler, Betty Carter, Coleman Hawkins, Chuck Mangione, Sun Ra, McCoy Tyner, and Randy Weston.

Juini often tours extensively in Western and Eastern Europe, performing solo bass concerts in the U.S., Canada and Japan. Some career highlights have been a concert with Randy Weston at the Tangiers Jazz Festival, Morocco, and with Sun Ra Arkestra in Tiblisi,Georgia (USSR) performing in a film of painter Larry Rivers entitled "Round Trip."

He received the Mingus-Zimmerman Award sponsored by ISB (International Society of Bassists) for Most Imaginative Performance in the Free Choice Category. He was Music Curator at Hallwalls in Buffalo, New York (1981-82) and at Niagara Arts Council (NAC) in St. Catherine's, Ontario (1991). An NEA composer grant (CAPS) and Meet the Composer have supported his compositional work. Booth is currently focusing on composing new works for contrabass, as well as working on collaborative projects with artists in other disciplines, in addition to teaching and recording.

Recording credits include: Shelley Mann, McCoy Tyner (3 albums), Freddie Hubbard, Elvin Jones, Sun Ra, Hamiet Bluiett, and many other artists.

Currently, Booth is Vice President of the nonprofit organization Wilbur Ware Institute, Inc.

Selected works:

  • New Work for Solo Bass, premiered at The Rivoli and The Music Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, 1992; followed by 4-city tour of Ontario, Canada.

  • Suite for Solo Contrabass,” premiered at Ali's Alley, New York City, 1978. This is a set of five solo works from which many tangential compositions have been developed and performed.

  • Journey to Enlightenment,” solo contrabass, recorded on McCoy Tyner's Enlightenment album (Milestones label) in performance at Montreux, France, 1973. Since that time, this piece has been performed in many venues throughout Europe and is considered a signature work.

  • For Bean,” recorded on Contemporary Records with Shelley Mann's group, Hollywood, CA, 1969