Tapping into the current Hammond organ revival, Chris Hovan’s Organic Trio revisits the classic organ combo genre with a renewed sense of purpose that puts swing and soulful energy at a premium. Drawing from both the classic and contemporary jazz repertoires, the trio features a rotating cast of musicians from Ohio and Michigan. For this special gathering, Hovan features up-and-coming organist Clif Metcalf. Hovan first encountered the sophomore at Hope College back in 2016 while attending Tony Monaco’s first Jazz Organ Summit in Holland, Michigan. Recently, Hovan worked with Clif again during Hope’s second Organ Summit along with making musical acquaintances with guitarist Derek DiCenzo. A regular member of Monaco’s trio, Derek has been a mainstay on the Columbus jazz scene and toured nationally with Monty Alexander.
A respected photographer, journalist, and musician, Chris Hovan has been involved with music since starting piano lessons at the tender young age of five. Adding clarinet to his studies while in middle school, Hovan ultimately devoted his full attention to drums and percussion while a freshman in high school. He attended the prestigious music conservatory at Baldwin-Wallace College where he studied classical percussion with George Kiteley. It was at this time that he began expanding his sphere of influence by studying Latin and Brazilian percussion styles and collecting instruments. Hovan also studied drum set for a year at the Berklee College of Music in Boston with Skip Hadden, John Ramsey, and Tommy Campbell. Upon his return to Cleveland, he honed his big band and chart reading skills with the legendary Harry Damas.
Over the past 25 years, Hovan has played in a variety of Northeast Ohio venues with many of the city’s finest players including Rich Holsworth, Josh Smith, Francois Roland, Larry Ross, Jackie Warren, Jeremy Poparad, and Bobby Selvaggio. He has also shared the stage with such national artists as Arturo O’Farrill, Brian Lynch, Alex Harding, and Frank Lacy. Hovan presently works as percussionist with the horn-based ensemble Funkology and plays drums in Bob Niederriter’s trio which regularly features Columbus organ greats Jon Eshelman, Robert Mason, and Tony Monaco.