Steve Coleman

Alto Saxophonist and Composer


Born in Chicago, alto saxophonist and composer Steve Coleman moved to New York City in 1978 and has lived in the NYC area since. A leader of several groups, his main group 'Steve Coleman and Five Elements' began in 1981 and is still active today. Steve incorporates elements from the folkloric music of the African Diaspora fused with musical ideas influenced by ancient metaphysical concepts.Coleman's work is known for its use of what most perceive as indefinite meter. The feel of the music is usually groove-based, but with a loose spontaneous fluid structure that is the consequence of the melodic, harmonic and rhythmic relationships of various cycles, expressed using an extemporaneous concept. In creating his music, Steve has used methods that can be linked to two concepts: Energy (the potential for change and change itself in physical, metaphysical and psychic phenomena), and Sacred Geometry (the use of shapes to symbolically express energy and natural principles). Steve’s latest recording is “Live at the Village Vanguard, Vol. I (The Embedded Sets)”,available on Pi Recordings.

Photo credit: John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation