Saxophonist, songwriter, and teaching artist Mike Casey has been a fixture on the Hartford jazz scene and beyond since 2011, when he began attending the acclaimed Jackie McLean Institute of Jazz at the University of Harford’s Hartt School. In 2015, Mike was one of 24 young jazz composers worldwide chosen by Jason Moran to participate in the prestigious “Betty Carter Jazz Ahead” Program at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC where he studied with an all-star faculty including Eric Harland, JD Allen, Eric Revis, Cyrus Chestnut, and Jason Moran.
After a sold out NYC debut at the Minton’s in Harlem in September 2016, Mike went on to accomplish an incredible feat: the crowdfunding campaign for his debut album The Sound of Surprise: Live at The Side Door (due for a February 2017 release) reached 111% funded in under 30 days. His resume includes appearances with Charles Tolliver, DJ Logic, Brandee Younger, Zaccai Curtis, Tarus Mateen and Marc Cary, whose project “The Harlem Sessions” features Mike as an original member.
Mike has enchanted audiences young & old alike, performing a unique blend of upbeat, accessible, original music and exciting arrangements of jazz standards with a mature lyricism and a sound that commands the attention of the audience.
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“Enjoyable from first to last note, the Mike Casey Trio certainly take the chordless saxophone trio format to a new level.”
— Sammy Stein, Jazz in Europe
“Using a Janus-like vision simultaneously encompassing both the past and the future,
Mike filters his ideas through his own musical and life experiences, honing his own
voice to create his uniquely original brand of glorious saxophone madness and
gladness, well-honed, accessible, and joyful.”
— Owen McNally, WNPR
“Although I’ve only heard it in fledgling form, his new album The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door is astounding in many parts