Troy Conn

black and white photo of troy playing a guitar
Freelance Musician and Educator

Education: Bachelor in Music Performance, UNC Charlotte (2002)

Hometown: Charlotte, N.C.

Troy Conn grew up loving music and feeling a connection to it. 

"I knew I had to play guitar when I saw the Jazz Band play at my school in 6th grade."

He continued to pursue this passion as he grew up. A few years later, he decided to continue learning about music and further his education at UNC Charlotte.

"My teachers at UNC Charlotte inspired and helped take my guitar playing and understanding of music to the next level. It was great to be exposed to music that I might not have searched out on my own. They also helped me find discipline and a way to continue my musical growth outside of college."

Most of his favorite memories from his time as a student were when he was able to perform. "My Junior and Senior recitals were highlights for sure. I can remember several performances that were quite special." After graduating, he was invited to study at the Berklee Guitar Sessions under a full scholarship.

Currently, Troy is a freelance musician and educator. He performs throughout the region and teaches Applied Jazz Guitar and Jazz Combo at UNC Charlotte and Applied Guitar at Queens University of Charlotte. His Charlotte-based jazz bands include the Conn/Davis Duo, Ron Brendle Quartet, Al Sergel IVtet, and Jazz Is Led. He also plays with numerous touring artists, and most recently played with The Platters. Conn is a frequent performer at Middle C Jazz in Charlotte, where he has featured the music of George Benson and Jeff Beck. He also works with Jazz Arts Charlotte as an instructor and a performer. 

In 2012, Conn played the Eclats d’Email Jazz Festival in Limoges, France. He later toured through the UK with Fat Face Band in 2014. He has been a repeat performer at the Kinser Jazz Festival, performing with the Metroplexity Big Band, backing Randy Brecker and Eric Marienthal. He has also performed in various venues in New Orleans, including Snug Harbor with the Ocie Davis Quartet.

Troy Conn is being honored as one of the 2023 College of Arts + Architecture Distinguished Alumni.

His advice for current students is, "Take advantage of your time in college and enjoy it. The relationships you build here will continue to help and support you way down the road."