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Antonio Hart, Saxophonist
Grammy-nominated alto saxophonist Antonio Hart has certainly come a long way since elementary school, when he chipped his very first reed by carrying it around in his sock. Born on Sept. 30, 1968, in Baltimore, Hart decided early on that he wanted to play alto sax, and he took lessons until music was cut at his high school. A friend got him an audition at the Baltimore School of Arts, and he was accepted. At first only classically trained, Hart did not become interested in jazz until right before college.
He studied jazz and education at the Berklee College of Music, and upon graduation promptly teamed up with classmate Roy Hargrove to tour and record for three years. During that time, Hart also earned a Master’s degree in music composition and performance from Queens College, studying with musical exemplars Jimmy Heath and Donald Byrd. He is now a distinguished professor at the same school, and teaches as well as tours internationally.
In 1991, he made his debut on RCA/Novus, For the First Time. Since then, Hart has made three other albums for RCA/Novus -- Don't You Know I Care (tribute to Dizzy Gillespie, 1992); For Cannonball And Woody (1993); and It's All Good (1994). He switched to Impulse! for 1997's Here I Stand. He has also appeared on recordings with Nat Adderley, Slide Hampton, the Dizzy Gillespie Alumni All-Stars and numerous others.