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Performing in Oakland, California, 2014
May 1, 1982|
Oakland, California, U.S.
|Years active||2000s – present|
|Associated acts||Joni Mitchell, Cold Specks, Walter Smith III|
Born and raised in Oakland, California, Akinmusire was as a member of the Berkeley High School Jazz Ensemble, where he caught the attention of saxophonist Steve Coleman who was visiting the school to give a workshop. Coleman hired him as a member of his Five Elements band for a European tour. Akinmusire was also a member of the Monterey Jazz Festival's Next Generation Jazz Orchestra.
Akinmusire studied at the Manhattan School of Music before returning to the West Coast to take a master's degree at the University of Southern California and attend the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz in Los Angeles.
In 2007, Akinmusire was the winner of both the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition and the Carmine Caruso International Jazz Trumpet Solo Competition, two of the most prestigious jazz competitions in the world. The same year he released his debut recording Prelude... to Cora on the Fresh Sound New Talent label. He moved back to New York City and began performing with Vijay Iyer, Aaron Parks, Esperanza Spalding, and Jason Moran, taking part in Moran’s innovative multimedia concert event In My Mind: Monk At Town Hall, 1957. It was also during this time that he caught the attention of Bruce Lundvall, then President of Blue Note Records.
Akinmusire made his debut on the Blue Note label in 2011 with the album When the Heart Emerges Glistening, featuring his quintet of tenor saxophonist Walter Smith III, pianist Gerald Clayton, bassist Harish Raghavan, and drummer Justin Brown.
|2001||Steve Coleman||Resistance Is Futile||Label Bleu|
|2003||Vijay Iyer & Mike Ladd||In What Language?||Pi Recordings|
|2006||Walter Smith III||Casually Introducing||New Talent Spain|
|2007||Alan Pasqua||Anti Social Club||Cryptogramophon|
|2007||Sara Gazarek||Return to You||Native Language|
|2007||Josh Roseman||New Constellations: Live in Vienna (Live)||Accurate Records|
|2008||Esperanza Spalding||Esperanza||Heads Up|
|2008||Danny Grissett||Form||Criss Cross Jazz|
|2009||Le Boeuf Brothers||House Without a Door||lbjazz|
|2009||Roy Hargrove Big Band||Emergence||EmArcy|
|2010||John Escreet||Don't Fight the Inevitable||Mythology Records|
|2010||Walter Smith III||III||Criss Cross Jazz|
|2010||David Binney||Barefooted Town||Criss Cross Jazz|
|2011||David Binney||Graylen Epicenter||Mythology Records|
|2011||Vince Mendoza||Nights on Earth||Horizontal Jazz|
|2011||Chris Dingman||Waking Dreams||Between Worlds|
|2012||Mette Juul||Moon on my Shoulder|
|2012||Jack DeJohnette||Sound Travels||Golden Beams/eOne|
|2013||Dayna Stephens||That Nepenthentic Place||Sunnyside|
|2013||Gerald Clayton||Life Forum||Concord|
|2016||Wolfgang Muthspiel||Rising Grace||ECM|
- "Competition - Past Winners and Judges". Thelonius Monk Institute of Jazz. Archived from the original on 22 April 2013. Retrieved 30 July 2013.
- Eisensmith, Kevin. "The 2007 Carmine Caruso International Jazz Trumpet Solo Competition". International Trumpet Guild. Retrieved 30 July 2013.
- "Ambrose Akinmusire Winner Paul Acket Award". North Sea Jazz Festival. Retrieved 8 May 2014.