Chris Potter

Jazz - Saxophone

World-class soloist, composer and bandleader

Youngest musician ever to win Denmark’s Jazzpar Prize

A world-class soloist, accomplished composer and formidable bandleader, saxophonist Chris Potter has emerged as a leading light of his generation. Down Beat called him 'One of the most studied (and copied) saxophonists on the planet' while Jazz Times identified him as 'a figure of international renown.' Jazz sax elder statesman Dave Liebman called him simply, 'one of the best musicians around,' a sentiment shared by the readers of Down Beat in voting him second only to tenor sax great Sonny Rollins in the magazine’s 2008 Readers Poll.

A potent improvisor and the youngest musician ever to win Denmark’s Jazzpar Prize, Potter’s impressive discography includes 15 albums as a leader and sideman appearances on over 100 albums. He was nominated for a Grammy Award for his solo work on In Vogue, a track from Joanne Brackeen’s 1999 album Pink Elephant Magic, and was prominently featured on Steely Dan’s Grammy-winning album from 2000, Two Against Nature. He has performed or recorded with many of the leading names in jazz, such as Herbie Hancock, Dave Holland, John Scofield, the Mingus Big Band, Jim Hall, Paul Motian, Dave Douglas, Ray Brown and many others.

Potter has remained committed to his art since his formative years. Born in Chicago in 1971, his family moved to Columbia, South Carolina when he was three. There he started playing guitar and piano before taking up the alto saxophone at age 10, playing his first gig at 13. At age 18, Potter moved to New York to study at the New School and Manhattan School of Music, while also immersing himself in New York’s jazz scene and beginning his lifelong path as a professional musician.

Now a respected veteran, Potter continues to work as a bandleader and featured sideman.

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