Oliver Lake is an American saxophonist, composer, and bandleader born on September 14, 1942, in Marianna, Arkansas. He is known for his innovative and adventurous approach to jazz music, which incorporates elements of free jazz, funk, and world music.
Lake began his musical career in the 1960s, playing in R&B and soul bands in St. Louis, Missouri. He later moved to New York City, where he became a member of the Black Artists Group, a collective of African American musicians and artists.
In the 1970s, Lake co-founded the World Saxophone Quartet, a pioneering ensemble that blended elements of free jazz and traditional African music. The quartet recorded several acclaimed albums and became known for its innovative and adventurous approach to jazz music.
Lake has also released many albums as a bandleader, including “Heavy Spirits” (1975) and “Matador of 1st & 1st” (1997). He is known for his soulful and expressive playing style, which is characterized by his rich tone and melodic improvisations.
Lake has collaborated with many notable jazz musicians, including Anthony Braxton, Don Cherry, and David Murray. He is also a dedicated educator and has taught at several universities and music schools throughout his career.
Lake’s music has been praised for its adventurous spirit and genre-defying sound. He is known for his ability to incorporate elements of funk, world music, and avant-garde jazz into his compositions, creating a sound that is uniquely his own.
In addition to his work as a musician, Lake is also a visual artist and has exhibited his work in galleries and museums around the world.
Page last updated 4/2/2023.