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Derrick Harvin

Derrick Harvin

(musician, producer, songwriter, and educator) has been playing music for many years. Harvin’s journey dates back to his early musical studies at PS 15 in Queens, NY where he begin to play the clarinet in the 2nd grade.  Furthering at Norfolk State University in Virginia (Music Education) and graduating from Full Sail University in Orlando Florida, his musical future was bound to be promising.


Post graduation he has wrote, arranged and engineered projects for 50 Cent, Hilary Duff, Chaka Khan, Natasha Bedingfield, Betty White, and Kevin Cossom. In 2003, Harvin partnered with Rashad Tyler and Kevin Cossom to form Seven Eight Music, LLC.  At which time Seven Eight Music attracted the attention of several major labels, which lead to signing Kevin Cossom to a multiple record deal with Universal Music Group. In addition to production, Harvin accepted a lab specialist position at Full Sail University working in Songcraft, Audio Workstations, and MIDI from 2003-2005.

Moving on to working in Battery Studios in New York, Harvin became associated with Grammy Award winning producer Vada Nobles (Lauryn Hill, Rihanna, and Faith Evans). He was soon offered a multi-year publishing deal with Vada’s company, New Ark Entertainment. Within this collaboration, Harvin co-wrote and produced Hilary Duff's single, “Stranger” along with American Idol judge, Kara DioGuardi. He also co-produced and engineered two other selections on Hilary’s Dignity project – “With Love”, and “Danger” - “With Love” becoming the theme song for Hilary’s fragrance.

Always searching for that greater purpose, Harvin set out to share his gifts to the world in a new collaboration with recording artist Jarian and New Missions organization. Seeing the needs of many families and children in Haiti, Harvin and Jarian were inspired to write the anthem “I Am Hope” for their mission work in Haiti.

With a strong love for jazz music, Harvin recently produced Erly Thornton’s CD “In Transit”.  The titled-cut debut at #25 on Billboard’s Smooth Jazz Chart.  He is currently working with several other artists in many genres.

Because of his love for teaching and motivating others, Harvin returned to Full Sail University and accepted the position as Course Director for Digital Audio Principles. When he is not travelling, writing, producing, or teaching, Harvin enjoys his newly found passion – photography – in which he devotes to his late father, Thomas Harvin.

Erly Thornton

Playing the saxophone has always been emotionally intense for Erly Thornton. Each performance is a connection that this artist and his audience mutually enjoy! Born in Nashville into a family with multiple talents: his mother, a M.S. graduate in Public Administration and a talented paint and charcoal artist, his father a B.S. graduate in Civil Engineering and a trumpet/flugelhorn player. Erly had no choice but to experience a double dose of creativity and professional influence from birth.

Starting on the sax in the 5th grade, Erly was challenged to play in front of his father’s musician friends on weekends to the music of Ray Charles. His improvisational style started there. Erly began studying the music in his room to learn every lick he could from jazz artists such as Herb Alpert, Grover Washington Jr., David Sanborn, Najee, George Howard, and others, learning their works by memory. But he also felt the R&B and Funk of groups like Cameo, EWF, Zapp, Stevie Wonder, Prince, and The Time contributing to his multi-faceted style.


During the middle 80’s Erly started college and after a season with the Tennessee State University Jazz Band began playing professionally for the first time in the Nashville area with various groups the most enjoyable being “AyreTyte” a Jazz contemporary jazz cover band. It is with this group and with Jerry Wilborn and “Limited Access” Erly performed state wide in the cities of Knoxville, Chattanooga and even spent some time on World Famous Beale Street in Memphis.

In the 90′s Erly moved to Orlando and very soon Erly was performing in Central Florida with several groups as well as solo. The unexpected breakup of one of the most successful of his Jazz groups thus far, “B.One”, prompted him to pursue a solo career in earnest.

Founding Groove Elation Records, Erly began writing in 2004 composing many of the songs on his first solo release. Drawing from his past he initially decided to create music using the strong bass and drums of the R&B of his youth, creating funky Jazz licks over the top. The effort was initially titled “The Old School Beat” but after collaboration with Veit Renn of Renn Music Productions the project evolved to be titled “My Life”.

“My Life” enjoyed tremendous success for an indie release breaking the top 30 on the Jazz charts which very few indies every do and is still being “discovered” by new fans daily. The most common comment is “I can’t seem to bring myself to take it out of the player. I play it over and over”

Still an independent artist, Erly has found that he would rather be in control of his destiny than sign everything over to a major label. Erly’s Sophomore project titled “In Transit” was released by Groove Elation Records in May 2012 to much fan appreciation.  The title cut was in Billboard Jazz Top 30 list for 7 weeks a impressive feat for a non label artist.

Erly now resides near Amsterdam Netherlands where has is expanding his brand into the European Jazz market.  

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