(San Francisco, CA, September 30, 2021) — SFJAZZ introduces a new lineup of the award-winning SFJAZZ Collective, welcoming new members: music director & saxophonist Chris Potter, vocalist Gretchen Parlato, and drummer Kendrick A.D. Scott.
The nine-piece ensemble also includes tenor saxophonist David Sánchez, trumpeter Etienne Charles, vibraphonist Warren Wolf, pianist Edward Simon, bassist Matt Brewer, and vocalist Martin Luther McCoy.
This new SFJAZZ Collective lineup is currently rehearsing in San Francisco and will make their public debut with four performances at the SFJAZZ Center in San Francisco from Thursday, October 28 to Sunday, October 31. The Friday, October 29 performance at 7:30pm/PST will be live streamed direct from the SFJAZZ Center as part of the organization’s new Fridays Live digital series. This performance and other exclusive behind-the-scenes content will be made available at SFJAZZ.org. The SFJAZZ Collective is planning national and international tours for Spring and Summer 2022.
For the 2021-2022 season, the SFJAZZ Collective will divert from its previous format of performing fresh arrangements of works by a modern master and will focus on new, original compositions from each member. These new works will reflect the times we are living in and will be dedicated to who we are as a country and a people in light of the fight or racial justice, the global pandemic, and the unprecedented political polarization and upheaval in the world.
New York-based and award-winning vocalist Gretchen Parlato becomes the SFJAZZ Collective’s third vocalist. In 2019, vocalist Lizz Wright became the second vocalist to join the SFJAZZ Collective but, because of the pandemic, was never able to record or perform as a member and has left the group to focus on her cafe, Carver 47, in Chicago. Current member and Bay Area-native Martin Luther McCoy was the first vocalist to join the group.
Parlato won the 2004 Thelonious Monk International Award for Jazz Vocals and was a Judge for 2013 Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition. She has been featured on over 85 albums, with four as a leader. Her 2015 release, Live in NYC, received a GRAMMY-award nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album. She has received more than 30 national and international awards, including the DownBeat Jazz Critics
Poll No.1 Vocal Album of 2011 and Best Female Vocalist by JazzTimes magazine in 2013.
She has performed with Wayne Shorter, Esperanza Spaulding, Kenny Barron, Terence Blanchard, Terri Lyne Carrington, Marcus Miller, and Toshiko Akiyoshi.
GRAMMY-nominated Chris Potter is among the most prominent, influential, and visionary artists in jazz, fronting multiple ensembles and collaborating with a staggering list of major artists including Paul Motian, Pat Metheny, Dave Holland, Zakir Hussain, Herbie Hancock, Jim Hall, Steely Dan and the Mingus Big Band. He has topped numerous DownBeat Critics Polls and has led or co-led 21 albums.
Houston-native Kendrick A.D. Scott is one of the premier drummers and composers of his generation. He has toured worldwide and recorded with artists including Herbie Hancock, Terence Blanchard, Marcus Miller, Charles Lloyd, Wayne Shorter, Joshua Redman, Robert Glasper, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Dianne Reeves, Kurt Elling, Gretchen Parlato, and the Blue Note All-Stars. Kendrick’s compositions have been recorded on GRAMMY-winning records, and he won a 2017 Chamber Music of America New Works Grant funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. He has released five albums as
a bandleader including A Wall Becomes A Bridge on Blue Note Records. Scott is on faculty at Manhattan School Of Music.
Founded by SFJAZZ in 2004, the SFJAZZ Collective is a leaderless group and a democratic composer’s workshop. The SFJAZZ Collective’s format has been for the group to both perform fresh arrangements of works by modern masters and commission each member to compose new pieces. Over their fifteen-year existence, the SFJAZZ Collective has included 29 members who have penned 110 original compositions and 115 arrangements.
The SFJAZZ Collective has gone though numerous line up changes over the years and has featured Bobby Hutcherson, Joshua Redman, Miguel Zenón, Robin Eubanks, Eric Harland, Mark Turner, Matt Penman, Avishai Cohen, Sean Jones, Andre Hayward, Stefon Harris, Dave Douglas, Nicholas Payton, Joe Lovano, Josh Roseman, Renee Rosnes, Jeff Ballard, Robert Hurst, and Brian Blade.
SIRIUSXM Real Jazz Channel 67 presents the weekly “SFJAZZ Collective Radio” and “Live From The SFJAZZ Center” programs featuring concerts, thematic selections from the SFJAZZ Collective’s vast archive.
SFJAZZ Collective members are also foundation faculty and resident artists at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s Roots, Jazz, and American Music Program where they mentor young artists through a unique curriculum towards a pre-professional college degree.