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Yamaha Artists

We're pleased to introduce you to some of our Yamaha supported clients


With over 15 million views online for his critically acclaimed Big Band, the pioneering trumpet player and producer Louis Dowdeswell is leading a resurgent interest in the genre. Hailing from the southwest of the UK and aged just 25, despite this international popularity, Louis remains at heart a hard-working gigging musician and in-demand session player and producer. “There’s nothing to equal the sheer exhilaration and intensity of making great music with friends. There’s a million ways to interpret the dots and I love the instinctive freedom of choosing my direction. ”Louis has already performed and recorded with a stellar list of artists including Michael Buble, Robbie Williams, Seal, Zac Brown and Alfie Boe and his TV credits include the X-Factor and the BBC's Children in Need. Louis is an extremely versatile player and in is also in high demand in orchestral settings with credits that include the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, English National Orchestra and the English Session Orchestra in addition to many West End Musical credits. To be able to perform at the highest level possible Louis Dowdeswell plays the Yamaha Commercial Trumpet YTR-6335RC and the Yamaha Custom Z YFH-6310Z flugelhorn.

Favourite Yamaha Instrument:

Jeff Coffin


Jeff Coffin is internationally known saxophonist, composer and educator. He is the 3 time Grammy Award winning saxophonist (since 1997) of one of the most innovative and ground breaking fusion groups of the last 20 years, Bela Fleck & the Flecktones. In July 2008, Jeff began touring with the most popular rock band in the United States, Dave Matthews Band, and plays to 25,000 + people per night. DMB's most recent recording "Big Whiskey & the Groo Grux King" was nominated for 2010 Album of the Year by the Grammy Academy and has sold over 1,000,000 copies. Jeff also fronts his own group, the Mu'tet which plays original compositions from Coffin leaning heavily on world music influences. Some of the artists Coffin has shared the stage and the recording studio with include: Bela Fleck & the Flecktones, Dave Matthews Band, Branford Marsalis, DJ Logic, New Orleans Social Club, Maceo Parker, McCoy Tyner, Baaba Maal, Willie Nelson, Chester Thompson, JD Souther, Van Morrison, Vinnie Colaiuta, Garth Brooks, John Scofield, and many others. Along the way, Coffin has absorbed an astounding range of influences from folk songs, jazz, funk and world music. Jeff is also known for sometimes playing two saxophones at once, harkening the spirit of the late great Rahsaan Roland Kirk. As a highly in-demand Yamaha Performing Artist, Coffin has presented over 175 clinics around the world to rave reviews from students and educators alike.

Favourite Yamaha Instrument:
Saxophone - YTS82Z

Bobby Shew

too many to mention

Over the years he has played with some of the jazz scene’s biggest names and has appeared on countless motion picture soundtracks. In his long career, Bobby has influenced the lives of many young players and through his passion for education and instrument design, he has created a legacy within the world of music. A passion for music came early for Bobby starting the trumpet at 10 years old stating that "The trumpet was kind of fun to do, was something new, was a new game.” This quickly led to regular gigging and by his early teens, he was a regular with New Mexico dance bands. Honing his skills with the renowned NORAD multi-service band, other big-band gigs followed, including one with jazz drumming giant Buddy Rich. Bobby Shew has also always been passionate about music education stating “I've now been teaching 64 years and it sounds like ridiculous. I think teaching is not what we do, I think inspiration is what we do, to allow the students to find their own voice.” Get an insight into the life of the legendary Bobby Shew as he walks us through his brilliant career.

Favourite Yamaha Instrument:

YolanDa Brown

Life’s intended path is often affected by timing and sudden opportunity. The fortunes of YolanDa Brown, for example, although always driven by her talent, intelligence and facility to get things done, have at crucial moments offered up some unexpected options. As a child, she played the piano, violin, drums, oboe and more before settling on saxophone as the instrument closest to her own musical voice. Later, as an academic, she notched up two masters degrees, began a PhD and learned Spanish to fluency, only then veering decisively back to music when her gigs blossomed into a first sell out solo concert at the Mermaid Theatre in London. Now, a successful debut recording – 2012’s widely appreciated April Showers May Flowers – two consecutive Best Jazz MOBO Awards, an Urban Music Award and a heap of ecstatically received live shows further on, YolanDa has just created an entirely new musical genre all of her own in readiness for her second album, Love Politics War, due for release on Black Grape Records come June 16. She’s christened it, with characteristic humour, ‘Posh Reggae’. “This album is a mix of reggae, jazz and soul,” she explains. “We have jazz chops and chords, and the soul element is always there. Combining the three together for me feels like the right place to sit: it’s my home. The first album was a bit broader because it had classical and funk in there too and that made it a bit wild to box it up neatly. Now this is my sound, it is all me… Understand, Love Politics War is not just a soul track followed by a jazz track, followed by a reggae tune. Nearly always it’s about combining the three styles into one sumptuous whole, reflecting YolanDa’s take on music. While YolanDa’s debut album and subsequent Reggae Love Songs tour concerned themselves with love in its many aspects, on Love Politics War the saxophonist and songwriter is combining her fresh musical direction with a new social awareness, reflected in both her selection of guest performers and lyrics. World events over the past five years since April Showers May Flowers, as well as the birth of her now three-year-old daughter, have caused YolanDa to cast a more mature eye on her surroundings. “The album is exactly that: a reflection on the world today and where love fits in it. Last year I did my Reggae Love Songs tour and since then I’ve been thinking a lot about what’s happening around us. I used to look at war in the historical sense – World Wars 1 and 2. Now it’s all around us. The threat is there all the time – the war on terror, the countries where war is an everyday reality, the desperation of asylum seekers… “In the past I have tried to stay away from political stances, but this time I wanted to talk about the confusion that seems to be around right now. People voted for Brexit, but what kind of Brexit are we going to get? And here we are in 2017 voting again. It seems to me that what Marvin Gaye asked back in 1971 - What’s Going On? - it still stands. That was the inspiration behind this album.” Star contributions to Love Politics War include the aforesaid Dame Evelyn Glennie who joins Snarky Puppy’s outstanding keysman Bill Laurance on the funky instrumental Feel No Pain. US soulman Raheem DeVaughn – himself no stranger to a political lyric or too – sings on two tracks: the gentle plea for mutual understanding This Kind Of Love and the Marleyesque Prosper, a song he himself wrote the words to. Neutral Ground, meanwhile, features jazz trumpeter Keyon Harrold [noted, amongst other things, for his performances on the 2015 Miles Davis bio-pic Miles Ahead] and New Orleans-based/British-born keyboard player Jon Cleary. Its title references the area of the Crescent City that historically used to separate the up-river Anglophone Americans from the down-river Creole/French speaking inhabitants [in the area that became the famous French Quarter]. Reflects YolanDa: “I went to New Orleans for Mardi Gras and a taxi driver told me about Neutral Ground, where people could come and there’d be no confrontation, no violence, no hatred - and that it still existed today. I liked that idea and musically we come together on the track and rub alongside each other - with Jon and Keyon - musicians from different walks of life, all making music together.” Born in Barking in the early 1980s, YolanDa Brown has been flying high and fast pretty much all her life. She was Head Girl at her comprehensive in East London; she romped through her GCSEs and A-levels before going on to those degree courses in Operations Management at the University of Kent [where she achieved a First Class]; she taught herself to play saxophone and when it began to pay off only then did she make music the central focus of her future career. YolanDa has played on stages with Billy Ocean, Mica Paris, Diana Krall and The Temptations, hosted her own shows on Sky and the BBC and for British Airways’ in-flight entertainment [she even performed on-board a plane for BA when they launched their direct route from Heathrow to New Orleans]. She’s been awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University of East London, has taken tea with the Queen and Prince Phillip, is currently writing a series of children’s books, loves to drive fast cars around race tracks in her spare time – if you can seriously imagine her having any - and can even rattle off a Rubik’s Cube in around five minutes [on a good day]. Oh, and earlier this year she was named as the Chair of Youth Music. A real renaissance woman, set to reach new heights

Favourite Yamaha Instrument:
Saxophone - YTS875EXB

Wycliffe Gordon

Wycliffe Gordon experiences an impressive career, touring the world while performing to great acclaim from audiences and critics alike. The Jazz Journalists Association has named Wycliffe "Trombonist of the Year" nearly a dozen times, and he has won the trombone category in the DownBeat Critics Poll on numerous occasions (2012, 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2018). In 2018, Wycliffe received the Louie Award, honoring his dedication and commitment to the music of Louis Armstrong. He received the International Trombone Association Award in 2017, which recognizes the highest level of creative and artistic achievement. In 2015, Wycliffe was presented the Satchmo Award from the Jazz Club of Sarasota, received the Louis Armstrong Memorial Prize presented by the Swing Jazz Culture Foundation and was named "Artist of the Year" by the Greater Augusta Arts Council. He is also a past recipient of the ASCAP Foundation Vanguard Award, among others. In addition to an extremely successful solo career, Wycliffe tours regularly as a leader of his quintet known as Wycliffe Gordon and His International All-Stars, headlining at legendary jazz venues and performing arts centers throughout the world. He is commissioned frequently and has an extensive catalog of original compositions that span the various timbres of jazz and chamber music. Musicians and ensembles of every caliber perform his music throughout the world, and his arrangement of the theme song to NPR's All Things Considered is heard daily across the globe. Wycliffe is a former veteran member of the Wynton Marsalis Septet and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and has been a featured guest artist on Billy Taylor's Jazz at The Kennedy Center. Wycliffe is also one of America’s most persuasive and committed music educators. He is Visiting Artist in Jazz Studies at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, MD and Director of Jazz Studies at Augusta University in Augusta, GA Wycliffe Gordon is a Yamaha Performing Artist and has his own line of Wycliffe Gordon Pro Signature Mouthpieces by Pickett Brass.

Favourite Yamaha Instrument: