Whether leading his own dynamic bands, supplying the soul for ensembles across the musical spectrum, embodying the spirit of modern jazz and spiritual sounds or inspiring the next generation of musicians, Grammy-nominated saxophonist, composer, arranger and educator Tim Green is a wide-ranging artist of deep passion and unflagging individuality.
“Tim Green is a dynamic musician,” says Christian McBride, the multiple Grammy Award-winning bassist. “If you make a checklist of everything you’d want in a musician, Tim has it all.”
McBride’s praise rings true given the diverse range of situations into which Green’s saxophone artistry has been invited. He has performed and recorded with some of the most recognized names in jazz, gospel, R&B, hip-hop and pop music, including McBride, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Jon Faddis, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, Earth Wind and Fire, Aretha Franklin, Jill Scott, Jennifer Hudson, The Cookers, Common, Ravi Coltrane, Eddie Palmeri, Fantasia, Carl Allen, Rodney Whitaker, Mo’ Horns, Joe Chambers, Kirk Franklin, Donnie McClurkin, and Yolanda Adams.
He has become a saxophonist of choice for many of jazz’s most revered pianists, a testament to his brilliant feel and his instinct for blending that singular personality into the sound of a band. Green has been featured on stage and recordings with such keyboard masters as his mentor Mulgrew Miller, Eric Reed, Patrice Rushen, Larry Willis, Orrin Evans, Allyn Johnson and Alex Brown, and as part of Cyrus Chestnut’s band Affirmation.
Based in his native Baltimore, Green has garnered international acclaim while establishing himself as a pillar of his hometown scene. In 2018 he joined the faculty of the esteemed Peabody Conservatory, where he plays a vital role in the innovative Jazz Studies program led by world-renowned trumpeter and educator Sean Jones. In this work he passes on the torch handed to him by bandstand mentors like Kenny Garrett and Mulgrew Miller and through his own studies; Green received his Bachelor of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music and earned his Masters in Jazz Studies from the University of Southern California’s Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.
At the same time Green has continued to hone his distinctive, soulful sound on stages across the globe and at the helm of his own ensembles, which feature some of the most vital musicians in contemporary jazz as well as close collaborators from the Baltimore and Washington DC nexus. 2024 will see the long-awaited release of his new album, his first as a leader in more than ten years, with a stellar line-up including pianists Orrin Evans and Allyn Johnson, guitarist Ethan Bailey-Gould, bassists Kris Funn, Romeir Mendez and Adam Johnson, and drummers Corey Fonville, Quincy Phillips and Billy Williams.
The much-anticipated album will mark the latest release on Green’s own True Melody Music label, a name that reflects his philosophy of music: a search for truth melded with a deep-seated melodicism. Green made his debut in 2005 with the hymn-based album Divine Inspiration. While his follow-up, 2012’s Songs From This Season, turned more towards straightahead jazz, he has nonetheless never lost touch with the spiritual core in his music. The impressive list of sidemen on the session, which arrived in the wake of Green’s second-place finish in the 2008 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition, included pianist Orrin Evans, vibraphonist Warren Wolf, guitarist Gilad Hekselman, and drummers Rodney Green and Obed Calvaire.
All About Jazz hailed Songs From This Season as “the true arrival of a saxophonist whose cup runneth over with ideas… Green has a million dollar tone quality that's devoid of any gruff, grime or edge, but that doesn't mean he can't or doesn't push the envelope in his own way.”
Living legend trumpeter Terence Blanchard has echoed that applause, calling Green, “a very talented musician with a wide array of creativity. His sound and writing are built on the strengths of our heritage while also containing a forward looking approach to create his own very personal sound.”
Green has taken the stage of the Hollywood Bowl with Christian McBride’s Big Band, adding that world-famous site to a list of prestigious venues that includes the Village Vanguard, Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, Disney Hall, and even the White House. Green has toured stadiums and arenas around the world for nearly a decade with the superstar vocalist Michael Bublé, showcasing his ability to maintain his musical personality in the pop realm. He has also enjoyed a 20-year collaboration with Darin Atwater’s Soulful Symphony, including a residency with the Philadelphia Orchestra.
He has also been enlisted by such notable music directors as Adam Blackstone, Alan Chang and Rickey Minor to join their elite ensembles at jazz festivals or iconic venues and for awards ceremonies and television shows. With American Idol’s Rickey Minor, he appeared at Radio City Music Hall to celebrate icon record producer and label head Clive Davis. Green has also performed at the BET Honors, VH1 Hip Hop Honors, BET White House Obama Farewell Special, the Tonight Show featuring Jimmy Fallon, the Michael Bublé Christmas Special, and BET’s Sunday Best.
While Green has journeyed far and wide since his days under the tutelage of Mulgrew Miller, he continues to embody the high praise lavished upon him by the late piano master, who commended him for keeping “a song in his heart.”