Bassist Elias Bailey started playing bass in the 6th grade school orchestra. The next year he won a scholarship from Milt Hinton for private study, which was awarded at the International Society of Bassists Convention, held in NYC. At the convention he had an opportunity to meet and attend master classes with John Clayton, Milt Hinton, Rufus Reid, Buster Williams and Bob Hurst. From that point his path was clear – to become a professional jazz bassist. The next two summers were spent between Northwestern University and Skidmore University, where he attended intensive classical and jazz summer programs led by Jeff Bradetich and Milt Hinton.
Playing professionally since the age of 15 in the Virginia area, by the age of 18 Elias had already performed with artists such as Nathan Page, Steve Wilson, Larry Willis and Derrick and Vincent Gardner. In his last year of high school he won a Level One scholarship from the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts, with which he attended the Virginia Commonwealth University Jazz Studies Program. Taking a break from his college studies, he joined the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra at the age of 19, getting a chance to travel the world and perform with artists such as Lynn Roberts, The Four Lads and The Mills Brothers. After spending two years with the TDO, Elias joined the group of Max Jazz recording artist, Rene Marie, with whom he spent five years and performed on her critically acclaimed album, Live at Jazz Standard. For the last twelve years, Elias has been performing at some of the most prestigious venues around the globe with The Freddy Cole Quartet. With Mr. Cole, Elias has shared the stage with artists such as Houston Person, Eric Alexander, John DiMartino and Harry Allen. Recently, Elias has also been performing with Bennie Wallace and Alvin Queen. Elias can be heard on Alvin Queen’s album “Mighty Long Way’ featuring Terrell Stafford, Peter Bernstein and Jesse Davis. He has recorded on Freddy Cole’s last six albums,including his Grammy Nominated “Freddy Cole Sings Mr.B”,as well as Rene Marie’s latest two albums “I Wanna Be Evil”and “Sound of Red” which were also Grammy Nominated.