Born: November 9, 1955 Primary Instrument: Saxophone
Lynn Baker is an active saxophone performer and clinician, performing with his own Lynn Baker Quartet, the free-improvisation trio Rhythmic_Void, performing with and directing the Rocky Mountain Jazz Repertoire Orchestra, and programming the jazz series at the Cherokee Ranch and Castle Performing Arts Series. His clinician appearances at colleges, universities, high schools, and festivals have taken him across the North American continent and to Asia. He is a Origin Records recording artist with his debut release on that label scheduled for September 2010.
Lynn is an award-winning composer, performer, and educator winning the 1987 Westside Composer Award (Minneapolis, MN), the 1995 COVisions Award for Jazz Composition, the 1980 Ruth Loraine Close award in performance from the University of Oregon, and the 2005 Downbeat Magazine award for Outstanding Achievement in Jazz Education �” College Level and students and ensembles from Lamont are frequent Downbeat Student Music Award winners.
Lynn is also the Director of the Jazz Studies and Commercial Music Program at the Lamont School of Music, University of Denver, where he directs the Lamont Jazz Orchestra, coaches combos, and teaches Jazz Improvisation and Composition class, Jazz History classes, and Jazz Techniques classes. Lynn holds degrees from the University of Oregon and Western Oregon University and has also studied at Mt Hood Community College with Larry McVeigh and at Indiana University with David Baker, Dominic Spera and Eugene Robinson. Before coming to Denver in 1993 Lynn taught at Indiana University and before that Carleton College, and universities in Oregon.
a monster saxophonist / composer Eric Troe KUVO Radio
About Lynn's Playing
The consummate skill set he brings to the table is beyond impressive. He is an accomplished saxophonist and doubler equally at home in Bebop, Classical and those organic improvisational contexts which demand not only a superior technical mastery of the instrument but a total trust of the intuitive and ability to deliver a sonic integrity emanating from the WHOLE MUSICIAN, not a rehashing of vocabulary which has long been codified beyond the point where anything fresh and new can be said. Richard Boukas, Malandro Recording Artist, artist-faculty at the New School Jazz & Contemporary Music Program, New York City Former IAJE Resource Chair in Brazilian Music
Lynn Baker plays saxophone in a way that exceeds any narrow definition of 'Jazz.' Yes, he gives genuine respect to all the eras of the art, playing the Bebop part for example. But because he's a modern thinker, he will also jump out into the edge to push and pull you in with yet an individual approach and sound that's riveting! Alexander Lemski, Executive Director Creative Music Works
Sizzling... Eugene Register Guard Eugene, Oregon
...a warm, understated tenor solo...strong blowing on tenor...the soprano saxophone catches fire on the classic Here's That Rainy Day. The Lamont School of Music Jazz Faculty - The Climb a review by Craig Leavitt The Gift of Jazz Magazine February, 1996, Vol.2, Num. 2
Lynn Baker is a musician endowed with those qualities that elevate him above the norm. He is a fine player with the background and knowledge that allow him to clearly express his music directly to his audience. Marvin Stamm Jazz Trumpet and Educator
Malcolm Lynn Baker is perhaps the finest saxophonist that I know. His command of both the instrument and the music is rare in any genre, and he brings an intensity to his playing that is singularly compelling. Everyone who hears him play can tell that they are hearing a master musician at work. That I should feel this way is, perhaps, not a surprise. We have been friends and collaborators for some 20 years, and I have been honored by his performances of my music. But I will also say that I know of no one who does not have the highest respect for Lynn Baker and his musicianship. Those of us who have made music with him have always been lifted by his energy and musical abilities. As a composer I can find no higher compliment to pay Baker than to say that whenever I compose music for the saxophone, it is his saxophone that I am hearing. James Mark Olsen, Composer
About Lynn's Composing
Lynn's composing doesn't stop with horns and rhythm section. How about integrating the electronic musical language! In the big band world, he LEADS AND DIRECTS the Creative Music Works Orchestra, one of only a handful of serious Jazz Repertory Orchestras in the country, doing an incredible job arranging for a multitude of Jazz masters, from Ellington to Kenton and others. Plus, yes, the contemporary composer that the other bands overlook. In addition to programming, arranging/transcribing, and conducting, he also performs with the orchestra gaining the respect of ALL the orchestra members, giving that historical perspective it's due! A full spectrum, lively, enthusiastic musician I'd say Alexander Lemski, Executive Director Creative Music Works
Lynn Baker is a master musician whose contributions to the world of contemporary jazz, as performer, composer and educator, will have a lasting impact. His work is distinguished by virtuosity and originality, and by a creative versatility that allows him the privilege of handling with command many musical languages and styles. Ricardo Iznaola International Renowned Classical Guitarist and Pedagogue
About Lynn's Teaching
Lynn was a person of great intellectual curiosity, willing to take risks and operate at the liminal conditions of music, not the comfortable, known center. The first day of his sound exploratory ensemble was spent listening to silence in various facilities--just the kind of thing to make an impressionable sophomore's head spin. Lynn was among a handful of teachers who dared to throw out all of the paradigms, manufacture a relevant ancestry, and start over. Mark Applebaum, Composer, Performer, Assistant Prof. of Music Stanford University
...an obvious enthusiasm for the music and desire to pass it on to those younger musicians who also share the love of this music make him an excellent teacher and educator in addition to being an excellent performer. Marvin Stamm Jazz Trumpet and Educator
'I wouldn't be the twisted person I am today without the insidious influence of Malcolm Lynn Baker during my undergraduate years...' Maybe the wrong track. How about something like: 'Malcolm Lynn Baker helped open my mind to worlds of new possibilities and different ways of hearing music during the time I studied jazz and improvisation with him at Carleton College.' Jon Von Seggern, digital DJ -- producer -- bassist Digital Cutup Lounge Hong Kong
I have known Lynn Baker for fifteen years and have to say that he is about as close to the whole package as anyone will find in the Jazz industry- performing, composing, arranging, educating, innovative, perspicacious administrating, curricular design that maximizes all the new technology can offer, and the uncanny ability to break down the false stylistic barriers in music education that others of less ecumenical capacity cloak as stylistic expertise by default. Lynn is brilliant, and effortlessly so. He takes himself far less seriously than those with a tenth of his talent or that the great fruits of his labors would warrant- for he is about crafting the future and not basking in the complacency of present accomplishments. For all who have had the fortune to work with him, he is a total joy to be with. Regardless of the setting, for Baker, music and its pure enjoyment come first. His infectious positive energy inspires his students to rise to their highest potential without the traditional teacher-student dialectic impeding either the development of vital expression or the transmission of core artistic values. For anyone interested in experiencing a most special musician, artist and educator, I suggest you click on his URL right now and open your date books wide. Richard Boukas, Malandro Recording Artist, artist-faculty at the New School Jazz & Contemporary Music Program, New York City Former IAJE Resource Chair in Brazilian Music
Tracks: Color Line; Lament; Into The Blues; Happy New Year; David's Tune; Azure Intention; Appalachian Shuffle; Spinning.
Personnel: Lynn Baker: Soprano and Tenor Saxophones and Percussion.
Reggie Berg: Piano.
Bijoux Barbosa: Acoustic and Electric Bass.
Paul Mullikin: Drums.
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Willing to teach:
Intermediate to advanced students
BIG BAND WORKSHOP: Over twenty-five years of college jazz ensemble directing have provided me with many educational insights that I would be happy to share with your ensemble. Whether we work on music that you are preparing, or some of my arrangements, I'll do my best to elevate the individual and ensemble in a fun and productive way. COMBO WORKSHOP: I enjoy coaching small ensembles in the nuance of jazz - whether it is ensemble playing, accompanying, or soloing. I am equally at home speaking to rhythm section players as I am with horns and enjoy teaching through demonstration. IMPROVISATION CLINIC: Good jazz improvisation is so much more than just knowing what scale will fit on a particular chord. It involves fundamental abilities to perform on your instrument, a knowledge of the syntax and grammar of jazz improvisation that is best gathered by listening, a sure sense of pulse and rhythm, and the desire to make a personal statement. My improvisation clinics take students where they are and build on their abilities and knowledge to move them closer to developing and accessing their individual voices as creative improvisers. COMPOSITION CLINIC: By studying the compositions that have defined and advanced art of jazz, my Composition Clinics provide a framework for students to pursue the development of their individual compositional voices. ARRANGING CLINIC: Arranging clinics can take several forms; working with individuals or small groups who have works in progress, lectures discussing an overview of arranging issues, or discussing particular techniques. I am happy to discuss with you the approach that will work best for your students. SAXOPHONE CLINIC: Covering my perspective on the basics of tone production, equipment and reeds, practice techniques, literature development and a variety of saxophone-specific ideas. COLLEGE MUSICI ADMISSION CLINIC: What do colleges want to hear? What educational options are there? How do I prepare an audition? What are the factors I should consider when making my college choices? Why study music in college? These and many more important questions are covered in this lecture/Q&A session. My twenty-five-plus years of teaching experiences and ten years of experience as a college music admission officer have given me special insight that I'm happy to share with your students. This is a particularly effective presentation at jazz festivals. SOUNDPAINTING CLINIC: Soundpainting is a gestural language developed by Walter Thompson that allows "painters" to improvise compositions with groups performers. This is a very open-ended experience that allows musicians to "think out of the box" in new ways. It is great for teaching communication, listening, creative problem-solving, and group cohesion skills.