Kenny Garrett, born October 9, 1960 in Detroit, Michigan and his father played saxophone as a hobby. After graduating from Mackenzie High School in 1978 he joined the Duke Ellington Orchestra, led by Mercer Ellington. He moved on to join the Mel Lew Orchestra playing the music of Thad Jones followed by a stint with the Dannie Richmond Quartet that focused on the music of Charles Mingus.
1984 saw him recording his first album as a bandleader, Introducing Kenny Garrett, on the Criss Cross label. Moving to Atlantic Records he recorded Prisoner of Love and African Exchange Student. Since 1990 the majority of Garrett albums are co-produced by pianist/composer Donald Brown beginning with signing with Warner Bros. Records label, releasing Black Hope in 1992. Songbook, his first album made up entirely of his own compositions, recorded in 1997, was nominated for a Grammy Award.
Over the course of his ongoing career Kenny has performed and recorded with among others, Art Blakey, Joe Henderson, Brad Mehldau, Freddie Hubbard, Woody Shaw, McCoy Tyner, Pharoah Sanders, Brian Blade, Marcus Miller, Chick Corea, John McLaughlin, Herbie Hancock, Bobby Hutcherson, Ron Carter, Elvin Jones, Geri Allen, Jack Walrath, Cedar Walton, Rodney Kendrick, Charnett Moffett and Mulgrew Miller. Best known in many circles for the five years he spent playing with Miles Davis during the trumpeter’s electric period.
Garrett has won a Grammy Award, has been nominated for a Soul Train Award, a Grammy and a NAACP Image Award nominations for Seeds from the Underground, was awarded an Echo Award in the Saxophonist of the Year in 2013 and has received an Honorary Doctorate in Music from Berklee College of Music. Post-bop saxophonist and flautist Kenny Garrett who has released nineteen albums as a leader and over thirty as a sideman, continues to pursue his solo career.
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