Gerald Albright

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Gerald Albright
Gerald Albright.jpg
Background information
BornAugust 30, 1957 (age 65)
Los Angeles, California
Genres Jazz
Instrument(s) Saxophone, Bass guitar, Keyboard
Years active1987–present
Labels Atlantic/WEA, GRP, Peak, Heads Up, Concord, Bright Music

Gerald Albright is an American jazz saxophonist. He earned Grammys for 24/7 in 2012 and Slam Dunk in 2014 and has been nominated for New Beginnings in 2008 and for Sax for Stax in 2009. [1]



Albright began piano lessons at an early age, although he professed no interest in the instrument. His love of music picked up when he was given a saxophone that belonged to his piano teacher. [2] It further reinforced when he attended Locke High School. After high school, he attended the University of Redlands where he was initiated into the Iota Chi Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha and received a degree in business management with a minor concentration on music. [3] He switched to bass guitar after he saw Louis Johnson in concert. [2]

After college, Albright worked as a studio musician in the 1980s [4] for Anita Baker, Ray Parker Jr., Olivia Newton-John, and The Temptations. He joined Patrice Rushen, who was forming a band, in which he played saxophone. When the bassist left in the middle of a tour, Albright replaced him and finished the tour playing bass guitar. Around the same time, he began to tour Europe with drummer Alphonse Mouzon. He has also toured with Anita Baker, Phil Collins, Johnny Hallyday, Whitney Houston, Quincy Jones, Jeff Lorber, and Teena Marie In addition to appearances at clubs and jazz festivals, he has been part of Jazz Explosion tours on which he played with Will Downing, Jonathan Butler, Chaka Khan, Hugh Masekela, and Rachelle Ferrell.

Albright has appeared in the television programs A Different World , Melrose Place and jazz segments for Black Entertainment Television, as well as piloting a show in Las Vegas with Meshach Taylor of Designing Women . He was one of ten saxophonists to perform at the inauguration of President Bill Clinton. [5]

His saxophone work appears in the PlayStation video game Castlevania: Symphony of the Night during the theme song "I Am the Wind", which includes keyboardist Jeff Lorber. [6]

Albright himself describes his playing style as being influenced to a large extend by the music which he heard when being a teenager: A mixture of gospel, Motown, Philly International Sound played by the likes of James Cleveland, The Hawkins Singers, James Brown with his band and particularly Maceo Parker. [7]

In September 2021 Gerald Albright received the Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award from President Joseph R. Biden. [2]


Albright plays a signature series model of saxophone made by Cannonball Musical Instruments. Of the two necks that are furnished with the Cannonball saxophones, he usually uses the "Fat Neck" with the octave vent tube on the bottom of the neck, a design similar to some vintage Conn 6M models. [8] Albright also plays bass guitar.


Studio albums

1987 Just Between Us Atlantic/Wea
1988Bermuda Nights Atlantic/Wea
1990Dream Come True Atlantic/Wea
1994 Smooth Atlantic/Wea
1995Giving Myself to You Atlantic/Wea
1997Live to Love Atlantic/Wea
1998Pleasures of the Night with Will Downing Polygram
2002Groovology GRP
2004Kickin' It Up GRP
2006 New Beginnings Peak
2008 Sax for Stax Peak
2010 Pushing the Envelope Telarc
2012 24/7 with Norman Brown Concord
2013 Summer Horns / with Dave Koz, Mindi Abair, Richard Elliot Concord
2014Slam Dunk [9] Heads Up
2016GBright Music
201830Bright Music
2018Summer Horns II From A to Z / with Dave Koz, Rick Braun, Richard Elliot, Aubrey Logan Concord
2019Not So Silent NightThere

Live albums

1991Live at Birdland West Atlantic/Wea


2020G-StreamBright Music
2022G-Stream 2 Turn It UpBright Music

As sideman/guest

1997Pauline WilsonOnly You Pony Canyon
1999The Phil Collins Big BandA Hot Night In Paris Atlantic
2000Noel ElmowyFeelin' GoodExpansion Records
2008Gerald AlstonGerald Alston Sings Sam CookeLST CO

Grammy Awards

The Grammy Awards are awarded annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Albright has received a sum of nine Grammy nominations. [10]

YearCategoryNominated workResult
1988 Best R&B Instrumental Performance (Orchestra, Group or Soloist) "So Amazing (Single)"Nominated
1989 Best R&B Instrumental Performance "Bermuda Nights"Nominated
2006 Best Pop Instrumental Album "New Beginnings"Nominated
2008 Best Pop Instrumental Album "Sax For Stax"Nominated
2010 Best Pop Instrumental Album "Pushing The Envelope"Nominated
2012 Best Pop Instrumental Album "24/7"Nominated
2013 Best Pop Instrumental Album "Summer Horns"Nominated
2014 Best Contemporary Instrumental Album "Slam Dunk"Nominated
2023 Best Improvised Jazz Solo "Keep Holding On"Nominated

Related Research Articles

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The saxophone is a type of single-reed woodwind instrument with a conical body, usually made of brass. As with all single-reed instruments, sound is produced when a reed on a mouthpiece vibrates to produce a sound wave inside the instrument's body. The pitch is controlled by opening and closing holes in the body to change the effective length of the tube. The holes are closed by leather pads attached to keys operated by the player. Saxophones are made in various sizes and are almost always treated as transposing instruments. Saxophone players are called saxophonists.

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The tenor saxophone is a medium-sized member of the saxophone family, a group of instruments invented by Adolphe Sax in the 1840s. The tenor and the alto are the two most commonly used saxophones. The tenor is pitched in the key of B (while the alto is pitched in the key of E), and written as a transposing instrument in the treble clef, sounding an octave and a major second lower than the written pitch. Modern tenor saxophones which have a high F key have a range from A2 to E5 (concert) and are therefore pitched one octave below the soprano saxophone. People who play the tenor saxophone are known as "tenor saxophonists", "tenor sax players", or "saxophonists".

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<i>Sax for Stax</i> 2008 studio album by Gerald Albright

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  1. "Jazz festival salutes Gerald Albright". Cape Gazette. October 10, 2019. Retrieved 2022-07-24. He has been nominated for several other Grammys, including in 2008 for New Beginnings and in 2009 for Sax for Stax. Subsequent Grammy nods were earned for 24/7 in 2012 and Slam Dunk in 2014. His latest release, 30, commemorates 30 years since the release of his debut CD, Just Between Us.
  2. 1 2 3 "Castle Rock News Press release on Gerald Albright receiving Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award".
  3. "San Diego Voice & Viewpoint Interview with Gerald Albright".
  4. Birchmeier, Jason. "Gerald Albright". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
  5. "JazzinPopCulture Report on the inauguration of Bill Clinton".
  6. Game Credits for Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
  7. "Article on about Gerald Albright with quotes from a CBB interview".
  8. FAQ at
  9. "New York Times announcing the release of album "Slam Dunk"". The New York Times .
  10. "Gerald Albright".