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Branford Marsalis

"Marsalis told stories with his breath and body, conjuring canyon-deep reverberations, woodland piping, blues cries and seductive whispers from his instruments. And, like a great storyteller, he brought those effects into focus, making every note count, as he sprang delightful surprises and created a world in the round."
The New Orleans Times Picayune

“Saxophonist Marsalis leads one of the most cohesive, intense small jazz ensembles on the scene today.”
Associated Press

Opus 3 Artists is thrilled to announce representation of Grammy-winning saxophonist Branford Marsalis. From his early acclaim as a saxophonist bringing new energy and new audiences to jazz, he has refined and expanded his talents and his horizons as a musician, composer, bandleader and educator – a 21st Century mainstay of artistic excellence.

Branford Marsalis has played with jazz titans including Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Herbie Hancock and Sonny Rollins, as well as in duo with pianists Joey Calderazzo and Harry Connick, Jr. He founded the Marsalis Music label in 2002, and under his direction it has been responsible for some of the most electrifying jazz of the last decade. Branford formed his own group in 1986 and the Branford Marsalis Quartet continue their intense collaboration known for the telepathic communication among its current members (pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Eric Revis, and drummer Justin Faulkner) and an unrivaled catalog that raises the standards of live and recorded performances by a jazz ensemble. Their 2012 album Four MFs Playin’ Tunes, was named Best Instrumental Jazz Album of the year on iTunes.

One setting notably absent from Marsalis’s resume until now has been the unaccompanied solo concert. This most daunting of formats poses particular challenges that were met with his signature blend of serious intent, technical rigor and emotional directness when Marsalis brought his soprano, alto and tenor saxophones to Grace Cathedral on October 5, 2012. The results can be heard on In My Solitude: Live at Grace Cathedral, the new album which Branford released on his Marsalis Music via OKeh Records imprint in October 2014.

Branford’s vast classical repertoire includes works by Copland, Debussy, Glazunov, Ibert, Mahler, Milhaud, Rorem, Vaughn Williams and Villa-Lobos and is frequently heard with leading symphony orchestras including those in Chicago, Detroit, Dusseldorf and North Carolina as well as the New York Philharmonic. He served as Creative Director for the Cincinnati Symphony’s Ascent series in 2012-13. Branford Marsalis is committed to education, forming extended teaching relationships at Michigan State, San Francisco State and North Carolina Central Universities and conducting workshops throughout the United States and the world.

Branford Marsalis has composed music for Broadway and film productions including a revival of August Wilson’s Fences, (Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Music in a Play and a Tony nomination for Best Original Score), The Mountaintop, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, and Mo’ Better Blues. Branford has toured with Sting, collaborated with the Grateful Dead and Bruce Hornsby, served as Musical Director of The Tonight Show Starring Jay Leno and hosted National Public Radio’s widely syndicated Jazz Set. Together with Harry Connick, Jr. and New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity, Branford conceived and helped to realize The Musicians' Village, a community in the Upper Ninth Ward that provides homes to the displaced families of musicians and other local residents in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. At the heart of The Musicians' Village stands the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music, a community center named for his father and dedicated to preserving the rich New Orleans musical legacy containing state-of-the art spaces for performance, instruction and recording.

Learn more about Branford Marsalis.