Saxophone player, composer and producer Branford Marsalis is this year's Artist in Residence at the North Sea Jazz Festival. Ever since the New Orleans born saxophonist recorded his debut album in 1984, he has been one of the leading figures in contemporary jazz. He has recorded numerous jazz albums, is equally comfortable with classical music, and has achieved huge commercial successes. Nowadays, as a producer of various albums, the eldest of the six children of the Marsalis family also feels completely at home behind the scenes of the music business. Branford Marsalis contributed to the conservation of old values and the development of the art of jazz. He also was one of the most important musicians who popularized jazz in the last few years. He performed with Sting, scored the hit single Another Day with Buckshot LeFonque and was musical director of Jay Leno's Tonight Show.
On Saturday the saxophonist and his quartet will commemorate saxophone legend John Coltrane with a performance of the latter's magnum opus A Love Supreme. March 30, 2003 the Branford Marsalis Quartet played a legendary gig at the Amsterdam Bimhuis. Marsalis' interpretation of John Coltrane's masterpiece made a big impression. Where Coltrane played this music live only once, Marsalis and his quartet chose to perform the piece many times and to really grow into the music. At North Sea Jazz 2006 Marsalis may repeat or even surpass one of the highlights of his career.