Jeff Coffin

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Jeff Coffin
Coffin performing in 2008
Coffin performing in 2008
Background information
Born (1965-08-05) August 5, 1965 (age 56)
Massachusetts, U.S.
GenresJazz, pop, rock
Occupation(s)Musician, record label owner
Years active1991–present
LabelsEar Up, Compass
Associated actsBéla Fleck and the Flecktones, The Mu'tet, Dave Matthews Band, Umphrey's McGee

Jeff Coffin (born August 5, 1965) is a saxophonist, composer, and educator. He is a three-time Grammy Award winner as a member of Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, with whom he performed from 1997 until 2010.[1] In July 2008, Coffin began touring with Dave Matthews Band and joined the group in 2009 following the death of founding member LeRoi Moore. He also leads his group Jeff Coffin & the Mu'tet.

Early years[edit]

Born in Massachusetts and raised in Dexter, Maine, Coffin began playing alto sax in fifth grade under the tutelage of Arthur Lagassee, the band director for the district. For two summers during the 1980s he attended the Summer Youth Music School at the University of New Hampshire which he credits for his love for mentoring young musicians.[2] In 1983, after graduating from Spaulding High School, he attended the University of New Hampshire for two years. He studied at the University of North Texas and graduated with a degree in Music Education in 1990. A recipient of a Jazz Studies grant from the NEA,[1] in 1991, he studied under saxophonist Joe Lovano.[3]

In 1997, he became a member of Béla Fleck and the Flecktones. Due to extensive touring requirements, he left the Flecktones in 2008. During the same year, he joined the Dave Matthews Band for their summer tour after saxophonist LeRoi Moore was injured in an all-terrain vehicle accident. Although he had intended to be in the band temporarily, he became a permanent replacement when Moore died from his injuries. He continued Moore's work on the band's album Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King.

Since the late 1990s Coffin has been recording and touring with his band, The Mu'tet. He has released some of the band's albums on his label, Ear Up Records. Taking the name from the word 'mutation', the Mu'tet reflects Coffin's philosophy that music must change and mutate in order to evolve. Coffin has also worked with Jeff Babko, Vinnie Colaiuta, Everyone Orchestra, R. Prasanna, Jonathan Scales, J. D. Souther, and Boyd Tinsley.

Coffin has given over 300 music clinics at colleges, universities, and other schools both nationally and internationally. He is on the faculty of the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University.[1]

Awards and honors[edit]


As leader or co-leader[edit]

  • Outside the Lines (Artifex, 1997)
  • Commonality (Compass, 1999)
  • Go-Round (Compass, 2001)
  • Bloom (Compass, 2005)
  • Arc of the Circle (2006) with Charlie Peacock
  • Mutopia (Compass, 2008)
  • Duet (Compass, 2011) with Jeff Sipe
  • Live! (Ear Up, 2011)
  • Side Up (Ear Up, 2014)
  • Inside of the Outside (2015)
  • Sometimes Springtime (2016)
  • Next Time Yellow (2017)

With Béla Fleck and the Flecktones

With Dave Matthews Band

With Jeff Babko & Vinnie Colaiuta

  • Mondo Trio (2007)

As guest[edit]

With Jon Foreman

With Umphrey's McGee

With Jonathan Scales

  • Plot/Scheme, Jonathan Scales (2008)
  • Pillar, Jonathan Scales Fourchestra (2018)

With others


  1. ^ a b c "Jeff Coffin | People | Blair School of Music | Vanderbilt University". Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Jeff Coffin | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 June 2018.

External links[edit]