In 1995, Mikey's mom got him involved in some jam sessions every Thursday night at the Gulf Coast Eatery and Jazz Club in Albuquerque, NM in early 1995. He used to sit in and drum away with the jazz that Dave Adams and some kids his age were playin'. They started having Saturday rehearsals and
in no time, they were playing some very challenging Charlie Parker tunes. They called themselves the Young Razzcals Jazz Project. They began playing at banquets and social club meetings. Later in the year, when he and three of his friends were discovered while playing on a street corner in Telluride, they were invited by Paul Machado, the Festival's Director, to play on the main stage at the Telluride Jazz Celebration.
Corey has played at the Telluride Jazz Festival, the Herdan Jazz Festival, and many other events. In 2003, Corey was voted best drummer at the James Madison University Tri-State Jazz Festival and the Virginia District Seven Jazz Festival Competition in Williamsburg, VA. Corey played in the Grammy Jazz Ensemble as the drummer in the Jazz Combo in 2005, 2007, and 2008. In October of 2007, Corey played at Carnegie Hall with the Bill Mayes Quartet.
Corey Fonville, from Virginia Beach, VA, began playing drums at age two. He acquired a taste for the art while sitting behind a junior set of drums and playing along with CD recordings of great fusion and modern jazz greats from his Father's collection.
By the age of eight, Corey had lent his talents to a CD entitled "The Land of Make Believe". He played on six of the 13 songs. Corey's debut was due in part to his work with the Birdland Express, which is led by pianist Dave Adams and trumpeter Steve Nygaard, both of whom are long-time jazz musicians.
Corey has since recorded on several other CD's including one that featured saxophonist Richie Cole.
Mikey designed the cover art on the first YRJP CD. He continued with the band until they cut their second CD. Shortly after that, Mikey's interests broadened to different areas. Mikey has continued his interest in jazz by organizing various charitable functions where jazz group performances are highlighted.
Every single member of the Young Razzcals Jazz Project, past and present, have a remarkable story. We have included a sampling of the biographies of some of the more colorful students.
Below is a more recent recording of Mr. Fonville on drums with Nicholas Payton.