A native of Awendaw, SC, Charlton Singleton began his musical studies at the age of three on the piano. He would go on to study multiple instruments throughout elementary, middle, and high school. In 1994, he received a Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance from South Carolina State University. Since then, he has taught music in grades K-12, as well as being in demand as a speaker and clinician. In November of 2016 he was named the inaugural Artist in Residence at the Gaillard Center in Charleston, SC. He remained in this position until July 2019; at that point he was named Artist in Residence Emeritus.
As a performer, Charlton leads his own ensembles that vary in size and style. He is a founding member of an ensemble called Ranky Tanky. In 2017 the group reached the top of the Billboard, iTunes, and Amazon Contemporary Jazz charts with their self-titled debut recording. In 2019 they accomplished the same feat with the release of their sophomore effort, “Good Time”, which recently won the 2019 Grammy Award for “Best Regional Roots Album”. In 2021 he was the recipient of the SC Governor’s Award, which honors arts organizations, patrons, artists, members of the business community, and government entities who maximize their roles as innovators, supporters, and advocates for the arts. It is the highest honor for the Arts in the state of South Carolina.
Outside entertainment, he, and his wife, MaryJo, are the proud parents of Shalamar and D’Marcus and new grandparents to Sophia Rose.