Ashton Fletcher, Jr
Ashton received full scholarships to the Peabody Conservatory of Music and Morgan University, where he earned Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees. As the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, he studied with renowned bassist Keter Betts (Ella Fitzgerald, Charlie Byrd).
A prominent and highly regarded performer in the Baltimore-Washington area, Ashton also toured all over the USA and Canada with international recording star,Bobby Vinton. He was the bassist for nine consecutive years for the TV special, “Christmas in Washington”, where he accompanied stars including Frank Sinatra, Donny and Marie Osmond, Amy Grant, Gregory Hines, Nell Carter, Reba McIntire and Aretha Franklin. Ashton played bass in the John Williams Orchestra for “Liberty Weekend”, an international TV spectacular featuring superstars such as Frank Sinatra, Neil Diamond, Diane Schur, Jose Feliciano, and Michael Baryshnikov. In 1989, Ashton had the honor of performing in the orchestra for the “Inaugural Gala” for President George H. W. Bush, with stars including Michael Crawford, Tommy Tune and Gregory Hines.
Ashton began teaching at CCBC in 1976 and was honored by CCBC with a service award for over forty years of teaching. He taught private instruction in bass guitar and string bass, cello, ear training and jazz improvisation. Known affectionately as “Maestro”, Ashton was the long time conductor of the Powerhouse Big Band at CCBC, a position he held until his death in 2015.
A world-class musician whose illustrious career spanned virtually every musical style over five decades, Ashton Fletcher was inducted into the Maryland Entertainment Hall of Fame in 2015. He was a devoted husband, a loving father, and a brilliant and passionate instructor whose love of teaching music was rivaled only by his love of performing.