James Saxsmo Gates
Official Biography (courtesy of James Saxsmo Gates)
Detailed, the new single from James “Saxsmo” Gates features a blazing hot duet with the incomparable smooth jazz sax master, Walter Beasley. This new hit is the first single from Saxmo’s latest CD, “Gates Wide Open” to be released late summer 2012 on 804Jazz.
James “Saxsmo” Gates is one of the Virginia’s most celebrated young musicians. He plays sax with a flaming passion that is evident in every note. His undeniable virtuosity along with his bell-like tone quality ignites a fire that illuminates the hearts and souls of all jazz enthusiasts.
A native of Richmond, Virginia, Saxsmo attended Virginia State University and later received a full scholarship to the prestigious Berklee College of Music, in Boston. While attending Berklee he became the protégé and colleague of many of today’s Lions of Jazz, including; Billy Kilson, Lynn Fidmont, Freddie Fox, Kevin Eubanks, Alex Bugnon, Cyrus Chestnut, Walter Beasley, Delfeayo Marsalis, Jeff Tain Watts, Shelia Ford, Billy Hart, Makoto Ozone, Wallace Roney, Greg Osby, Ron Savage, Lala Hathaway, Wil Calhoun, Robin Eubanks, Donald Harrison, Marvin Smitty Smith and Terri Lynn Carrington to name just a few. He received his Bachelor of Music degree from Berklee and his Masters in Jazz Studies at North Carolina Central University under the guidance of Dr. Ira Wiggins and Brandford Marsalis.
Most recently he was appointed Coordinator of the Billy Taylor Jazz Studies Program at Virginia State University. In addition to his accomplishments in academia, James Saxsmo Gates has played and traveled extensively in the United States and abroad with such notable artists as Larry Carlton, Jeff Lorber, Alex Bugnon, Joe Kennedy, Jr., Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Walter Davis, Jr., Walter Bishop, The Temptations, Dianne Reeves, Jimmy Cobb, Larry Willis, Roberta Flack, Marvin Gaye, Lou Rawls and The Main Ingredient.
Saxsmo has three albums as a soloist in his discography, “Yes I Can” (out of circulation), “C’Mon Over To My House” and “It’s Time”. For more information check out www.saxsmo.com and www.facebook.com/saxsmo.