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Historical and Modern Jazz:

Explore Classic and Contemporary Artists by Instrument

Thanks for taking the time to check out some great jazz artists, from historically important jazz musicians to multi-instrumentalist contemporary performers and educators. This is, by no means, an exhaustive list of performers. Instead, it's a curated list of three performers on each wind instrument, and is a "jumping off" point in your exploration of jazz instrumentation. Jazz has no boundaries: artists of all genders and nationalities have been selected to demonstrate the diversity of personnel and creativity. 


Charlie Parker - Alto Saxophone

Historically important in development of bebop in the 1940s

Audio to check out:

Bird: The Savoy Recordings (Full Album)


Migeul Zenon - Alto Saxophone

Modern Puerto Rican alto saxophonist, composer, band leader, music producer, and teacher.

Audio to check out:

"Identities are Changeable" - live with Identities Big Band, 2014

Tia Fuller_8301_(c)Jerris Madison.jpg

Tia Fuller - Alto Saxophone

Contemporary Saxophonist, composer, and educator, and part of the all-female band touring with Beyonce.

Audio to check out:

Live at the Strathmore Mansion, 2014


Lester Young - Tenor Saxophone

Historically important member of the Basie Band, active from 1933-1959.

Audio to check out:

Lester Young with the Oscar Peterson Trio


Chris Potter - Tenor Saxophone

American jazz saxophonist, composer, and multi-instrumentalist. Active 1990 to present.

Audio to check out:

Live @ A Vaulx Jazz 2019


Melissa Aldana - Tenor Saxophone

Contemporary Chilean tenor saxophonist

Audio to check out:

Live combo performance from 2018


Gerry Mulligan - Bari Saxophone

American jazz icon, popularized the bari as a solo instrument, active from 1946-1996.

Audio to check out:

Gerry Mulligan & Chet Baker: Carnegie Hall Concert


Harry Carney - Bari Saxophone

Legendary bari sax player with the Duke Ellington band. Active from 1927-1974

Audio to check out:

Featured with Duke Ellington band, "Sophisticated Lady."


Lauren Sevian - Bari Saxophone

Winner of the "Rising Star" in the 67th Downbeat Critics Poll (2019), and Grammy Award winner.

Audio to check out:

Live at Dizzy's Club at Jazz@Lincoln Center, 2017


JJ Johnson - Trombone

American trombonist, composer, arranger. Active from 1942-1996, one of the first to embrace bebop

Audio to check out:

The Great Kai and J.J. (full album)


Luis Bonila - Trombone

American, Grammy Award winning jazz trombonist of Costa Rican descent.

Audio to check out:

Live from the Puerto Rico Heineken Jazz Festival, 2013


Natalie Cressman - Trombone

Singer, Songwriter, trombonist, and winner of the most recent "Rising Star - Trombone" Downbeat 2019.

Audio to check out:

Natalie Cressman and Ian Faquini - "You Go To My Head" (house concert)


Miles Davis - Trumpet

One of the most influential and acclaimed figures in the history of jazz.

Audio to check out:

Miles Davis - Kind of Blue (full album). Best selling jazz album of all-time.


Ingrid Jensen - Trumpet

Canadian trumpet player, one of the best modern trumpet players alive today.

Audio to check out:

Discover Jazz - Ingrid Jensen. An hour-long PBS Special from 2016.


Wynton Marsalis - Trumpet

American virtuoso trumpeter, composer, teacher, and artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center

Audio to check out:

Wynton Marsalis live at Jazz in Marciac 2019

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