Clint Baker

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Clint Baker (born January 27, 1971, in Mountain View, California) is an American traditional jazz musician performing on cornet, trumpet, trombone, clarinet, saxophone, guitar, banjo, tuba, string bass, and drums.[1]


Baker started playing clarinet in 1980. His first school band director needed trombonists and quickly switched Clint to trombone. Baker is an autodidact and in the years that followed he would learn additional instruments including tuba, tenor banjo, and drums. In 1984 he organized and led his first traditional jazz band: “Greasy Kid Stuff” (1984–1989). In 1988 this band appeared at the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Jubilee with Baker leading the band on cornet. Baker has performed at the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Jubilee (now called the “Sacramento Music Festival”) every year since 1988.

After high school Baker began working full-time as a freelance musician. In 1990 he created Clint Baker’s New Orleans Jazz Band (1990–2000). In October 1990 Clint Baker’s New Orleans Jazz Band began performing on Friday nights at Cafe Borrone in Menlo Park, California. He has been leading his band there (now called the “Cafe Borrone All-Stars”) for the past 19 years. Clarinetist Bob Helm (Yerba Buena Jazz Band) worked there regularly with the band up until his death in 2003. Trumpeter Leon Oakley (who also worked with Turk Murphy) has played there regularly since 2000.

Clint produced his first record in 1991: “Clint Baker’s New Orleans Jazz Band Featuring Jim Klippert”. Since then, he has produced 8 recordings including: "In The Groove" (1992), "Going Huge" (1998), "Tears" (2002), and “Who’s Foolin’ Who?” (2008).[2]

Clint Baker’s New Orleans Jazz Band appeared at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in 1992[3] and at the Monterey Jazz Festival in 1999.[4] The band toured festivals in the US and Canada extensively and was voted one of the top five Favorite New (Emerging) Jazz Bands in the 1998 Mississippi Rag Trad Jazz and Ragtime Poll. (In the same poll Baker was voted one of the top three Favorite New (Emerging) Musicians.)[5]

As well as leading his own band, Baker has worked as a freelance musician playing drums with Big Bill Bissonnette’s International Jazz Band which included Tuba Fats Lacen and George Probert on reeds (1997). He also played the Kobe Jazz Street Festival in Japan (bass and trumpet) with the New Orleans Rascals and Tom Sharpsteen (1997). He returned to the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival (trombone) with the Boilermaker Jazz Band (1998). In 2007 he returned to the Monterey Jazz Festival for a second time with the Gypsy jazz band, the Hot Club of San Francisco (bass).

Baker has appeared with the Jim Cullum Jazz Band on Riverwalk Jazz, and has been featured on other radio programs including Sunday Night Suites, Morning Cup Of Jazz, Talk Show Live, The Annals of Jazz, and Back On Basin Street (which he engineered and co-hosted with radio personality Mal Sharpe).

In 2008 Woody Allen licensed the song “Salty Bubble” from the CD “Tom Sharpsteen and his Orlandos” to be used in his film "Whatever Works". Baker can be heard in the film and on the motion picture soundtrack playing drums. In 2009 Gerard Bielderman published a discography detailing the bands, instruments, and over 100 recordings Baker has made.

Currently Baker performs regularly with: The Yerba Buena Stompers (tuba), The Delta Stompers (guitar/banjo), Hot Club of San Francisco (bass), The Cafe Borrone All-Stars (misc.), The Reynolds Brothers Rhythm Rascals (clarinet, trombone, and bass), The Ray Skjelbred Quartet/Ray Skjelbred and His Cubs (bass), The Grand Dominion Jazz Band (trumpet) and Usonia Jazz (misc.).

Baker is also a noted jazz educator. He taught on staff with the Jim Cullum Jazz Band at the Stanford Jazz Workshop in California. He frequently guest lectures at San Mateo Community College and the Community School of Music and Arts at Finn Center. He has taught music to elementary school children at the East Palo Alto Academy. And for the past 12 years he has been a faculty instructor at the AFCDJS Adult Jazz Camps teaching trumpet (1997, 2008–2009), banjo and guitar (1998–2000) string bass and tuba (2001–2007), and trombone (2010–2011). He is currently the Staff Archivist for the San Francisco Traditional Jazz Foundation and a life member of the Stanford University Music Library.

Selected discography[edit]

  • In the Groove - Clint Baker's New Orleans Jazz Band - Burgundy Street
  • Sugar Blues - Chris Tyle's Silver Leaf Jazz Band - Stomp Off
  • In the Gutter - International Jazz Band - Jazz Crusade
  • Ninety and Still Delivering - Narvin Kimball - DanSun
  • Chasin' the Blues - Jim Cullum Jazz Band - Riverwalk
  • Yama Yama Man - The Yerba Buena Stompers - Stomp Off
  • Bohemian Maestro - The Hot Club of San Francisco - Azica
  • Whatever Works (Official Motion Picture Soundtrack) - Tom Sharpsteen And His Orlandos - Razor & Tie


  1. ^ Yanow, Scott Trumpet Kings: The Players Who Shaped the Sound of Jazz Trumpet Backbeat Books; illustrated edition (June 9, 2001)
  2. ^ Bielderman, Gerard and Rae Ann Hopkins Berry. Clint Baker Discography Published by Gerard Bielderman February 2009
  3. ^ McCaffrey, Kevin The Incomplete, Year-by-Year Selectively Quirky, Prime Facts Edition of the History of The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival e/Prime Publications (April 2005)
  4. ^ The 1999 Monterey Jazz Festival Jazz Journalists Association Library. Scott Yanow (1999)
  5. ^ The Mississippi Rag: 25th Anniversary Poll August 1999

External links[edit]