Jay Ashby is a five-time Grammy winning producer, and has received multiple nominations in other categories including arranging and engineering. A "consummate musician" whose talents "know few bounds" (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review), Ashby has performed, toured, and recorded with some of the most renowned jazz artists in the industry for over 25 years. As a member of The United Nation Orchestra, a group originally put together by Dizzy Gillespie and Dizzy's Alumni All-Star Big Band, Ashby forged long lasting musical relationships with many jazz greats including Paquito D'Rivera, Jon Faddis, James Moody, Jimmy Heath, Randy Brecker, and Slide Hampton. Through his association with trumpet master Claudio Roditi, Ashby developed a strong affinity for Brazilian Jazz, which led to many years as a soloist with Astrud Gilberto, as well as arrangements, tours, and recordings with a number of other Brazilian artists including Tania Maria, Kenia, Ivan Lins, Trio Da Paz, and even appearences with two of the "fathers of bossa nova," João Gilberto and Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Ashby's work as a trombonist, a percussionist, an arranger, and a producer can be heard on over 175 recordings, covering a continuum of styles from jazz and pop to world music. Ashby's release, Mistaken Identity (MCG Jazz), with fellow trombonist Steve Davis, received critical acclaim within the jazz industry, remained on the national air-play list for an unprecedented 16 weeks, and reached as high as number two on the charts. A few notable examples that include Ashby's work as an arranger are Live in Paris with Paul Simon, Beyond Brooklyn with Herbie Mann and Phil Woods, A Day Like This with New York Voices, and two of Nancy Wilson's Grammy winners - Turned to Blue and R.S.V.P (Rare Songs, Very Personal).
His versatility as a pop trombonist, percussionist, and arranger began in 1999 with pop icon Paul Simon, with whom Ashby has toured and performed extensively both on stage and television. Appearances with Simon include the Today Show, Saturday Night Live, The Late Show with David Letterman, in addition to performing alongside James Taylor, Stevie Wonder, and a host of other artists honoring Paul Simon at the 2007 Gershwin Award Show. Ashby participated in the star studded HBO broadcast of the 25th Anniversary of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at Madison Square Garden.
A Yamaha Artist for many years, Ashby conducts master classes, residencies, and clinics worldwide including annual events in Germany, Brazil, and Russia. He holds degrees from Ithaca College and Duquesne University, and is on the faculty of Oberlin Conservatory where he serves as Associate Professor of Jazz Arranging.