saxophone

Snupps

April is Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM), and this year marks the 60th anniversary of the most influential year in jazz, 1959. Each week we've highlighted one of the game-changing albums that left an indelible mark in jazz history, and changed the course of its future.

Okeh/Sony Masterworks

April 1, 2019. Familiarity is said to breed unpleasant things, but the new album from the Branford Marsalis quartet, suggests the opposite. Pianist Joey Calderazzo and bassist Eric Revis have each been with Branford for the past twenty years. They call drummer Justin Faulkner “The Rookie;” he’s approaching a decade with the group.

Getty Images

Jazz musician Cornelius (Sonny) Fortune died on October 25th, at age 79. Sonny's biography reveals he was a man in perpetual motion, allowing no grass to grow under his feet when it came to perfecting his craft. He used his time and talents wisely and well.

Hailing from South Africa, pianist Paul Hanmer and saxophonist McCoy Mrubata have performed, recorded and composed together for 30 years. Both alums of Hugh Masekela’s band, each artist has been influenced by both South African music and American jazz, which you can see in this live performance from the WRTI 90.1 Performance Studio hosted by J. Michael Harrison on WRTI's Facebook page.

Blue Note Records

Bassist, composer and multi-instrumentalist  Marcus Miller has been a celebrated name in the music industry for over thirty years. His new release, Laid Black, proves his star power with the inclusion of some guest artists with illustrious careers of their own. Selah Sue, Trombone Shorty, Jonathan Butler, Kirk Whalum and Take 6 all add to relaxed creativity of this album.

Beatriz Ota

Saxophonist and composer Daniel Bennett first showed interest in his instrument when his sister brought him to see a high school jazz ensemble when he was nine years old. Now he's an active performer on the New York jazz scene; his ensemble the Daniel Bennett Group was recently voted “Best New Jazz Group” at the New York Hot House Awards.

Melissa Gilstrap

Tenor saxophonist Larry McKenna is a Philadelphia legend, but the reach of his playing extends well past his hometown. Perhaps that’s why you’ve voted him our No.7 Essential Artist.

Ryan Brandenberg

Listen to Project Fusion, a dynamic young saxophone quartet, when they chatted with Classical Coffeehouse Host Debra Lew Harder and performed LIVE on WRTI. A winner of Astral's 2015 National Auditions, Project Fusion has captured top prizes in prestigious chamber music competitions; the ensemble's concerts have been described as “joyful celebrations.”

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