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Nathan Breedlove

Nathan Breedlove - leader of The nu Trio, is a twice Grammy-nominated artist and composer. Born a military brat in Fort Lewis, WA., his musical heritage began in Memphis, TN at the age of ten. He started classical piano and harmony studies under Mrs E.L. Cole (also taught Booker T. of the MG’s). Playing trumpet by age eleven, by high school he was the featured trumpet soloist with the ‘Norseman Jazz Ensemble’. They won the prestigious Mobile National High School Jazz Festival competition, making them the top high school jazz band in America. He toured Romania in the summer of 1973 for three weeks and visited Paris for the first time. Next Breedlove attended University of Memphis on a music scholarship along with future Art Blakey alums; James Williams, Donald Brown and Mulgrew Miller. With his jazz indoctrination, Nathan was also introduced to the R&B world by his neighbor and early mentor David Porter (Stax Records).

After the death of his mother, Nathan left Memphis by joining the Air Force Band; an experience he is reticent to talk about and which lasted only two years. “The commander said I sounded like Miles Davis and they hated Miles, so they made me play piano in the rock band. The trumpet section was so pitiful they had to put me back in a couple of months later.

After his honorable discharge, Breedlove resided primarily in Tacoma and Seattle where he spent two years as a member of Onyx, Seattle's top funk band. He then freelanced with artists including Buddy Catlett, Julian Priester, Bert Wilson, Jimmie and Jeanie Cheatham and Denny Goodhew. He played solo piano and eventually formed his own quintet with tenor saxophone giant, Hadley Caliman. He also played in Los Angeles at Marla's Memory Lane with Bobby Watson, John Hicks, Jimmie Cleveland, Curtis Lundy and Kenny Washington.

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”Nathan Breedlove displays great jazz chops at a time before he came to front the popular Skatalites. His trumpet sounds great, falling onto the spirit of the undertaking from the onset. Listen to how his solo on “Rob” sustains the rowdy flights of Moondoc's cadenza, then how he finishes by suddenly breaking into a bump-and-grind riff, underscoring the unseriousness at the heart of the number.” - Lou Kannenstine, Eremite Records.

“They're extremely talented; Wallace Roney can play his ass of; Wynton, Terence Blanchard, Roy Hargrove, and this guy Nathan Breedlove.” - Lester Bowie, Downbeat July 1992.

“Under-recorded Breedlove is suprisingly agile and charmingly ragged, with a clear debt to Don Cherry and Bobby Bradford.” - Steve Loewy, All Music Guide

“As expected, the Skatalites put on one of the best sets of this year's New Orleans Jazz Fest

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