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August 30, 1957|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Labels||GRP, Peak, Atlantic/WEA, Polygram|
|Associated acts||Will Downing, Phil Collins|
Gerald Albright (born August 30, 1957) is an American jazz saxophonist and multi-instrumentalist. His self-produced music features him on bass guitar, keyboards, flutes, drum programming, and background vocals.
Born in Los Angeles, Albright grew up in its South Central neighborhood. He began piano lessons at an early age, even though he professed no great interest in the instrument. His love of music picked up considerably when he was given a saxophone that belonged to his piano teacher. It was further reinforced when he attended Locke High School , a breeding ground for many young West Coast musicians. After high school, he attended the University of Redlands where he received a B.S. degree in business management, minoring in music. Already a polished saxophonist by the time he enrolled in college, Albright suddenly switched to bass guitar after he saw Louis Johnson in concert.
Immediately after college, Albright began to master his talent by working extensively in the studio with such artists as Anita Baker, Ray Parker, Jr., The Temptations and Olivia Newton-John. A few months after graduating from college, Gerald joined Patrice Rushen, who was in the process of forming her own band, in which he played the saxophone. Later, when the bass player left in the middle of a tour, Albright replaced him and finished the tour on bass guitar. Consequently, he often performed on both instruments. Around the same time, he also began to tour Europe with drummer Alphonse Mouzon.
He has also toured with Jeff Lorber, Teena Marie, Quincy Jones, Whitney Houston, Phil Collins, Johnny Hallyday, Anita Baker and many others. In addition to numerous appearances at clubs and jazz festivals, Albright had also been a part of the popular Jazz Explosion tours, which saw him teaming up with contemporary jazz stars like Will Downing, Jonathan Butler, Hugh Masekela, Chaka Khan and Rachelle Ferrell, among others.
Albright has also made several television appearances on shows such as A Different World, Melrose Place and BET jazz segments, as well as piloting a show in Las Vegas with Designing Women star Meshach Taylor.
Albright was one of the ten featured saxophonists who performed at Bill Clinton’s inauguration. He was also featured at the Presidential Summit, as well as several private functions for the President.
Albright is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. Albright now lives with his family near Denver, Colorado.
Gerald Albright plays his own signature series model of saxophone made by Cannonball Musical Instruments. The GA5-SB is the current model shown above, with a polished black-nickel bell on a silver-plated body.
Of the two necks that are furnished with the Cannonball saxophones, Gerald generally uses the "Fat Neck" (as shown above), with the octave vent tube located on the bottom of the neck—a design somewhat similar to that of some vintage Conn 6M models.
Mouthpieces and reeds
- Tenor saxophone - Theo Wanne DATTA Hard Rubber
- Alto saxophone - Custom Beechler HR Diamond Inlay with Hahn or LaVoz "medium-hard" Reeds
- Soprano saxophone - Dukoff D7 with Hahn Reeds
- Gerald Albright's saxophone work is featured in the PlayStation video game Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. His saxophone work can be heard during the game's closing theme song "I Am the Wind" (which, coincidentally, also features smooth jazz keyboardist Jeff Lorber).
- Albright is an avid golfer, and a pair of golf clubs is somewhat hidden in the hand-engraving motif he helped design for his signature series saxophones.
Discography - Gerald Albright
|1987||Just Between Us||Atlantic/Wea|
|1990||Dream Come True||Atlantic/Wea|
|1995||Giving Myself to You||Atlantic/Wea|
|1997||Live to Love||Atlantic/Wea|
|1998||Pleasures of the Night with Will Downing||Polygram|
|2004||Kickin' It Up||GRP|
|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 Records|
|2014||Slam Dunk||Heads Up|
|2001||The Very Best of Gerald Albright||Atlantic/Wea|
|1991||Live at Birdland West||Atlantic/Wea|
|2008||Gerald Alston Sings Sam Cooke||LST CO|
- FAQ at GeraldAlbright.com
- Game Credits for Castlevania: Symphony of the Night