B. COURTLAND SAXONAffiliation:
Courtland and Friends Jazz Combo
Jacobs School of Music/Indiana University
Jackson State University
Artist's BiographyDescribed as a musical prodigy, Courtland is innovative, technically-gifted and soulful. He possesses deep-rooted musical expressions of the jazz legends, reflected in his versatility whether he\'s improvising on a solo or playing soft background music. John Coltrane once said this regarding music: \"There is never an end. There are always new sounds to imagine, new feelings to get at and always the need to keep purifying these feelings and sounds so that we can really see what we\'ve discovered in its purest state.\" This ideology best sums up the musical approach of B. Courtland Saxon, a graduate student at Jacobs School of Music. A graduate of Jackson State University, Courtland was a Dean\'s List Scholar, member of the National Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, MENC (International Association of Music Education), AAJC (African-American Jazz Caucus), JSU\'s Jazz Band and Vocal Ensemble. With appearances in the April 2006 issue of the Jazz Educational Journal with the AACJ/HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) Student All-star Big Band, Courtland traveled to Japan with the Gospel Voices of Jackson, MS, performed with the Jackson State Orchestra at the Library of Congress for the U.S. Congress. He has enjoyed sharing the stage with saxophone masters\' legend Jimmy Heath, the Marsalis Brothers, Gerald Wilson, Chaka Khan, Chris Potter, the world renowed classical alto saxophonist Otis Murphy and named Best Soloist for the 2006/2008 Alcorn State\'s Collegiate Jazz Festival, 2008 Alabama\'s Jazz Hall of Fame Collegiate Festival and also Best Soloist at the North Texas Jazz Festival .During this competition, he received Best Composer and Arranger for one of his original tunes, Cleopatra\'s Needle. While performing with the AAJC/HBCU Student All-star Big Band at the Notre Dame Collegiate Jazz Festival, Saxon and six others received sponsorship to attend the 2006 Centrum Jazz Festival in Port Townsend, Washington. He was the featured soloist with the renowned saxophonist Kirk Whalum at the STAX Music Academy SNAP AFTER SCHOOL Spring Concert in Memphis, TN. At the historical election of President Barack Obama, B. Courtland performed with the JSU Orchestra at the Inauguration Celebration. Saxon is not resting on his laurels and humbly states, \"There is still so much to learn, explore and accomplish.\" Future plans include completion of graduate and doctorate programs with a career centered on teaching, performing abroad, writing music for television and film. He further explains, \"Music is a feeling. I try to make it happen, bringing everything together, the theory and technique, to create a body of art that stands the test of time.\"
\"Saxon performs at a consistently high level as a soloist.\"
Larry McClellan, Ph.D
Dean Professional Educational Division (Retired)
Berklee College of Music
\"B. Courtland Saxon presents a very intelligent improvisational approach to jazz with wonderful tone quality and great chops...Look out for many future contributions from him. He really has a handle on this music and his instrument.\"
Dr. Willie L. Hill, Jr.
Director, Fine Arts Center, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Past President - IAJE International Association for Jazz Education
Past President - MENC: The National Association for Music Education