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David Liebman

”It is an honor to be recognized by the country where jazz was born and raised. Most of all, it is gratifying to join such a select and prestigious group of past Jazz Masters recipients. Among this group are many artists who have in one way or the other provided the knowledge and wisdom that inspired me and those of my generation to become the best we could. I thank my family, the musicians with whom I have played and others who have supported me through the years. Like the music, getting this award is truly a group effort.”

David Liebman has shown an ability to play in any style of jazz, especially on what has become his instrument of choice, the soprano sax. In addition, he has been a strong advocate of the music, having founded the International Association of Schools of Jazz (IASJ), an organization dedicated to bringing together educators and students from jazz schools worldwide.

He began classical piano lessons at age nine, soon switching to saxophone. His interest in jazz was sparked especially by hearing John Coltrane perform in various New York City clubs. Throughout high school and college, Liebman continued playing jazz, learning “from the street” as was the way before jazz education was more common, though he did spend periods studying with Joe Allard, Lennie Tristano, and Charles Lloyd.

In the 1970s, Liebman came into his own, founding Free Life Communication, a cooperative of several dozen young musicians that became an integral part of the fertile New York “loft” jazz scene. He soon found a spot as saxophonist/flutist in drummer Elvin Jones' group, and then was hired by Miles Davis. Liebman played on Miles' last two recordings before the trumpeter's temporary retirement in the late 1970s, Get Up with It and On the Corner.

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April 18, 2016

Music Education Monday: A master class with David Liebman's Expansions

October 10, 2011

Jazz Arts Group Presents NEA Jazz Master David Liebman, Nov. 2 at Vonn...

December 30, 2010

Saxophonist David Liebman, Named NEA Jazz Master, Pays Homage to Trane,...

August 28, 2010

David Liebman and Fusion Both Honored by Jazz Prize

September 01, 2009

Dave Allen Quartet Featuring David Liebman - September at 55 Bar

June 05, 2008

David Liebman, Ellery Eskelin, Tony Marino, Jim Black - Renewal (Hat...

April 23, 2008

David Liebman-Ellery Eskelin Quartet: "Renewal" on Hatology 654

February 10, 2008

Saxophonist David Liebman and Pianist Jim Ridl Discuss The Creative...

April 06, 2007

David Liebman, Richie Beirach, Ron McClure, Billy Hart, Redemption:...

April 16, 2006

David Liebman Quartet At The Jazz Standard Apr. 18-20

October 26, 2005

David Liebman : The Distance Runner on Hatology 628

September 28, 2005

Free David Liebman Seminar on 'Taking Your Ensemble on the Road'

April 03, 2005

David Liebman, Ellery Eskelin, Tony Marino & Jim Black : Different But...

February 27, 2005

David Liebman, Ellery Eskelin, Tony Marino & Jim Black : Different But...

September 19, 2001


September 18, 2001

David Liebman Group Explores Unheard Jobim

August 22, 2001

Arkadia Records releases Liebman Plays Puccini: The 4th CD from...

October 25, 2000

David Liebman Big Band Appearing In New York :November, December and...

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