Born: June 30, 1970
Geof Bradfield's writing is a revelation. Not only does it have much the same power and precision of his soloing; it also shows a highly refined use of the limited instrumentation, which allows him to create orchestral textures from just his sextet. (Neil Tesser)
“Bradfield turned in poetic work on his CD of last year, African Flowers (Origin Records). The luster of his tone on saxophone is matched by the depth of his work as composer.”(Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune)
Geof Bradfield was born in Houston, TX, where he attended the renowned High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. He lived and worked for periods in New York, Los Angeles, and Washington before settling in Chicago in 2004. Along the way, he has been fortunate to work alongside many jazz luminaries and to perform throughout the United States, Europe, Russia, Africa and the Middle East. He is featured on numerous recordings, including his critically acclaimed 2010 release African Flowers, which was named one of the top 10 CDs of 2010 by the Los Angeles Times. His septet performed this 10-part suite in 2011 at Chicago’s Millennium Park to an audience of 8,000 as part of the celebrated series Made in Chicago: World Class Jazz. Mr. Bradfield and his ensemble also presented the suite at the DuSable Museum of African American Art as the Artist-in Residence of the Hyde Park Jazz Festival in the fall of 2011....
Awards2012 Illinois Arts Council Grant for Music Composition 2011 New Jazz Works: Composition and Presentation Award from Chamber Music America and the Doris Duke Foundation 2010 Illinois Arts Council Grant for Music Composition 2010 Fellowship in Music Composition from the Black Metropolis Research Consortium and the Carnegie-Mellon Foundation. 2009 Community Arts Assistance Program Grant from the City of Chicago 2008 New Works: Composition and Presentation Award from Chamber Music America/Doris Duke Foundation
Selected as one of the Top 10 Jazz CDs of 2010 by The Los Angeles Times, Neil Tesser, the Ottawa Citizen, Cadence Magazine, All About Jazz, and the All Music Guide.
Selected as one of the best CDs of 2010 by Tom Hull of the Village Voice.
Named “one of the most anticipated CDs of 2010 by Howard Reich of the Chicago Tribune.
“…the resulting suite of music from Bradfield draws as much from his own musical essence as a modern jazz performer steeped in the jazz heritage, as it draws directly from African music. With all these elements plus his innovative imagination and strong writing and arranging skills, Bradfield has crafted an appealing musical portrait of Africa which is well comprehended and performed by his excellent sextet, yielding one of the finest jazz albums of the year in my view. (Cadence Magazine)
“African Flowers is a knock-out!” (Peter Margasak)
Bradfield's experiences [in Africa] play out vividly on the new disc in a continuous suite; the thematic arc is identical to his itinerary… Butare, Lubumbashi Kampala and Harare, divided by solo interludes in addition to melodic anecdotes, like the hard-swinging postbop bustle Nairobi Transit and tender ballad Mama Yemo, A sleek swing undercurrent keeps African Flowers filed in the jazz bin, but the syncopated countermelodies coursing through Bradfield's compositions play like a musical travelogue. (Downbeat)
“Bradfield turned in poetic work on his CD of last year, African Flowers. The luster of his tone on saxophone is matched by the depth of his work as composer.”(Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune)
...together the band delivers entrancing polyrhythmic themes like the melodic Rwandan praise song Butare and the danceable Congolese rumba Lubumbashi, the latter a catchy clave vehicle for the leader's bold tenor sax work. (Bill Milkowski, Jazztimes)
Bradfield traveled to Africa and like many jazz musicians who have journeyed overseas to hear other forms of music, absorbed what he heard and blended influences from them with his own original ideas...Africa seen through the prism of Geof Bradfield's music proves to be a delightful experience. (AllMusicGuide)
We’ve come to expect top-drawer saxophone solos from Bradfield... His solos unwind with a wealth of imaginative detail but without any sense of alacrity; at his most impassioned, he remains unruffled and unflappable, drawing occasional comparisons to a young Sonny Rollins or to the contemporary Chris Potter. But Bradfield’s writing is a revelation. Not only does it have much the same power and precision of his soloing; it also shows a highly refined use of the limited instrumentation, which allows him to create orchestral textures from just his sextet. (Neil Tesser, The Examiner)
He gracefully and precisely leads a superb sextet—with Fludas, Cohan, Sommers, guitarist Jeff Parker, and trumpeter Victor Garcia—through pieces characterized by lush, elegant melody lines and streaked with contrapuntal figures and pretty harmonies. Bradfield hasn’t undertaken an ethnographic experiment here—like the Ellington work I mentioned above, what he saw and heard functioned as an inspiration for ideas in his own idiom. (Chicago Reader)
Mature and exciting work from an ascendant player and composer. (Chicagojazz.net)
Bradfield's excellent jazz adventure into Africa ultimately leads right back home. Funny, how small this world actually is. This is one beautiful record. (Allaboutjazz)
African FlowersOrigin Records
Urban NomadOrigin Records
Rule Of Three
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Geof Bradfield has extensive experience as an educator. Since completing his MFA at California Institute of the Arts, he has held positions at several colleges and universities as well as teaching master classes in topics ranging from improvisation to the history of American music in the twentieth century to jazz composition and saxophone technique. He has toured Africa, the Middle East and Russia through Jazz at Lincoln Center's "The Rhythm Road: American Music Abroad" program as a performer and clinician. In 2012, Mr. Bradfield joined the faculty of Northern Illinois University as Assistant Professor of Jazz Saxophone and Jazz Studies.
Clinics topics include saxophone technique and sound production, practice strategies for the jazz musician, improvisation, composition and arranging, ensemble coaching, and lecture/demonstrations on various aspects of jazz history. Clinics can be geared to most levels and class sizes and are designed to be interactive, participatory experiences for everyone involved.