The Howard Paul Quartet featuring saxophonist Don Braden
Don Braden is a Jazz musician of the highest caliber. For over 30 years he has toured the world leading his own ensembles on saxophone and flute, as a special guest, and as a sideman with Jazz greats Betty Carter, Wynton Marsalis, Freddie Hubbard, Tony Williams, Roy Haynes, and many others. He has composed music for ensembles ranging from duo to full symphonic orchestra, in many styles, for recordings (including 19 CDs as a leader and over 80 as a sideman), film, and the television networks NIckelodeon and CBS. Braden is a leading arranger of contemporary standards, and has built a solid collection of newer American songs into his Jazz repertoire. He is also a world renowned educator, having spent over two decades giving master classes at countless schools and universities, and running first class educational programs such as the Litchfield Jazz Camp, NJPAC’s Wells Fargo Jazz For Teens, and most recently, the Harvard University Monday Jazz Band. He is an imaginative, technically excellent, soulful saxophonist, and his harmonic and rhythmic sophistication give him a unique approach to improvising as well as composing and rranging. Most important of all: he has a beautiful sound, and he swings! All this combines with his joyous yet disciplined personality to make him one of the most important musicians working today.
Howard Paul leads a busy life as President of Benedetto Guitars and as a professional guitarist. In Savannah he oversees the factory, and performs at regional jazz clubs and festivals. He’s a recurring member of The Tony Monaco Trio, The Lenore Raphael Trio, and The Savannah Jazz Orchestra. He also performed extensively in a duo with pianist Bob James, and for more than twenty years with bassist Ben Tucker. Howard has worked with Howard Alden, Bucky Pizzarelli, Andreas Oberg, Jimmy Bruno, and many more. He is chairman of the Savannah Jazz Festival, and a 2011 inductee in the Coastal Jazz Hall of Fame. His most recent CDs include “Tony Monaco/Howard Paul: New Adventures,” “Bob James & Howard Paul: Just Friends: The Hamilton Hall Session released in 2011,” and Ali Ryerson: Jammin’ At The Jazz Corner” are available on iTunes and other media outlets.
When Doug Payne of Sound Insights reviewed Bob James & Howard Paul’s album “Just Friends: The Hamilton Hall Sessions 2011,” he had this to say:
Guitarist Howard Paul seems to call up a host of influences, mixing a style that recalls the not-too-distant past of Jim Hall and Kenny Burrell (and sometimes Wes Montgomery) marked up with a refreshing twist of contemporary modernity that merely suggests Pat Metheny. If rock and R&B or any of its storied guitarists have ever influenced Howard Paul, he surely doesn’t reveal it in his playing. But that’s not to say he’s old fashioned. Paul is driven by the melody and he’s as much a catalyst for James as he is someone who knows how to charm with guile when it’s his turn in the spotlight – a glow that would be set on the moodiest setting available.