Born in the shadow of the jazz capital of the world, Long Island, NY but raised in the heat of Florida latin rhythms and soulful blues of the deep south, Steven "Jimmy-Joe" Scholz is an award winning jazz composer and artist who recently released his first album as a leader, “When You Feel it Within” – an album that communicates his joy for living, and celebrates the magic of creation through the spirit of his music. Featuring only original compositions and an all-star cast of saxophonist Jon Olejnik, Bassist Kelly McCarty and Drummer Leon Anderson Jr., “When You Feel it Within” is a fresh and approachable jazz debut.
Steve’s credentials as a jazz composer and artist are grounded in his education and real world experience. Working professional since the age of 15, he holds his masters degree in jazz piano performance from Florida State University – where he joined the faculty as an educator in 2009 and performed, composed, and recorded for top FSU jazz combos and the nationally acclaimed Jazz Ensemble I, became a protégé and the official assistant to the world renown artist in residence Marcus Roberts and toured the world as a pianist/bandleader on cruise ships. He was awarded “outstanding soloist” and IAJE notification at FSU Jazz Festivals, UNF Jazz Festivals, Lakeside Jazz Festivals, First-Place Winner in the Duke Brown Blues Competition and First-Place Winner in the Central Florida Jazz Society Competition.
Steve is a sought after solo artist and educator on the west coast and is often the resident pianist for leading hotels and clubs in San Francisco and Los Angeles (and held residency at the famous Vitello’s Jazz and Super Club from 2013-2015). In addition, he was recently a faculty member at the collegiate level, teaching as an adjunct professor of jazz and popular piano at Contra Costa College and Diablo Valley College. Currently he performs full-time as a solo pianist/keyboardist, sideman and band leader for various events, shows and gigs around the the Bay Area, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, while actively developing his band Professor Jimmy-Joe and the Soundship.