@ the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre,
the Barbican Centre & the Brixton Accademy
15 November 2011 - 2005 - 1997
Click an image to enlarge.
One of the most commercially successful American
saxophonists to earn prominence since the 1980s, David Sanborn has
released 24 albums, won six Grammy Awards, and has had eight Gold
albums and one Platinum album. Having inspired countless other musicians,
Sanborn has worked in many genres which typically blend instrumental
pop, R&B and lately, more and more traditional jazz. He released
his first solo album “Taking Off” in 1975, but has been
playing the saxophone since before he was in high school when he
was inspired by the great Chicago blues artists near his hometown
of St. Louis.
Having contracted polio at the age of three, Sanborn
was introduced to the saxophone as part of his treatment therapy.
By the age of 14, he was able to play with legends such as Albert
King and Little Milton. Sanborn went on to study music at Northwestern
University before transferring to the University of Iowa where he
played and studied with the great saxophonist JR Monterose.
Later travelling to California on the advice of
a friend, he joined the Butterfield Blues Band and played Woodstock
with Paul Butterfield. Following that, Sanborn toured with Stevie
Wonder and recorded for Wonder’s “Talking Book album,”
played with The Rolling Stones, and toured with David Bowie with
whom he recorded the famous solo heard on “Young Americans”.
At the same time, Sanborn was touring and recording with the great
Gil Evans, dividing his time between the two. After moving to New
York City and studying with George Coleman, Sanborn started his
solo career where he later collaborated with such artists as Paul
Simon and James Taylor.
Sanborn’s solo release of Taking Off in 1975—still
considered a classic—further solidified his career. His 1979
release of “Hideaway” became a popular hit and further
propelled Sanborn’s ascent with the single, “Seduction”
being featured in the movie, American Gigolo. Veteran bassist and
composer Marcus Miller joined Sanborn on the 1981 album, “Voyeur.”
The single, “All I Need Is You” won Sanborn his first
Grammy Award for Best R&B Instrumental Performance. In 1983,
Sanborn released the hit album “Backstreet” that included
Luther Vandross as a featured guest vocalist. Later albums have
included guest artists such as Jack DeJohnette, Bill Frisell, Charlie
Hayden, Wallace Roney, Kenny Barron, Christian McBride, and Eric
Moving onto television, Sanborn hosted the show,
Night Music from 1988 to 1990. Produced by Saturday Night Live creator
Lorne Michaels, the show featured films of jazz legends like Thelonious
Monk, Dave Brubeck and Billie Holiday, as well as banter and memorable
music jams by a remarkable list of musicians including Sonny Rollins,
Miles Davis, Joe Sample, Pharoah Sanders, and many others. Additionally,
Sanborn has regularly hosted the ‘After New Year's Eve’
TV special on ABC. During the 1980s and 1990s, Sanborn hosted a
syndicated radio program, The Jazz Show with David Sanborn. Sanborn
has also recorded many shows’ theme songs as well as several
other songs for The Late Late Show with Tom Snyder.
In his three-and-a-half decade career, Sanborn
has released 24 albums, won six Grammy Awards, and has had eight
Gold albums and one Platinum album. He continues to be one of the
most highly active musicians of his genre, with 2010 tour dates
exceeding 150. Considered as a whole, Sanborn is an artist who pushes
the limits and continues to make music that challenges the mind
and goes Straight to The Heart.