Artists Page

Walt Weiskopf

Saxophonist, composer and author Walt Weiskopf has made an impressive mark as both a leader and sideman with over a dozen critically acclaimed albums and countless sideman credits. A dynamic player with enormous technical prowess, Weiskopf is equally well-regarded as a composer, with albums containing predominantly original work.

Weiskopf's latest album, Fountain Of Youth (Posi-Tone 2017) locks in with a familiar crew of accomplished collaborators including vibraphonist Behn Gillece, pianist Peter Zak, bassist Mike Karn, and drummer Steve Fidyk. Weiskopf has clearly advanced to another level of compositional mastery and effortless virtuosity with this tour-de-force performance.

Fountain Of Youth is the fourth record for Posi-Tone, following The Way You Say It (2016), Open Road (2015) and Overdrive (2014), and continues to show his evolution as a composer, bandleader, and one of todays most accomplished saxophonist.

Weiskopf was born in Augusta, Georgia and grew up outside Syracuse, New York. He took up his first instrument, the clarinet, at age 10 and began his saxophone studies four years later. After graduating from Rochester's Eastman School of Music in three years, he moved to New York City in 1980. He began his professional career performing with the Buddy Rich Big Band in 1981 at the age of 21.

In 1983, Weiskopf began a fourteen-year association with jazz pianist and arranger Toshiko Akiyoshi, making seven recordings and touring the USA, Japan and Europe several times with her orchestra. During this time, he began recording his own material. Under the tutelage of clarinetist Leon Russianoff in 1988-89, Weiskopf earned a Master of Arts in clarinet performance from Queens College of the City University of New York. He has performed with a number of notable classical orchestras.

In 1993, Weiskopf began releasing leader records that were all met with immediate positive journalistic acclaim and radio success. Weiskopf has continued his production since then and has seventeen albums to his credit. Also in this time, Weiskopf performed as a sideman for many notables like Frank Sinatra, Donald Fagen and Steve Smith's Jazz Legacy. Weiskopf's long-running and current sideman gig is with Steely Dan.

Weiskopf is also among the most respected authors in the field, and has penned eight books on advanced topics in improvisation. His first two books are Coltrane: A Player's Guide To His Harmony and The Augmented Scale in Jazz (both co-authored with Ramon Ricker). In 1994, Weiskopf completed Intervalic Improvisation. Around The Horn, was released in 2001 and the sequel, Beyond The Horn (co-authored with Ed RosenBerg) in 2010. Understanding The Diminished Scale was released in 2012, and last summer Weiskopf released two books on jazz soloing; 16 Moderately Challenging Jazz Solos: For Alto Sax and 16 Moderately Challenging Jazz Solos: For Tenor Sax (Jamey Aebersold Jazz).

Weiskopf was a visiting Associate Professor part-time at the Eastman School of Music from 2001 to 2008, then taught at Temple University, and was until recently the Coordinator of Jazz Studies at New Jersey City University.

Releases - click HERE for album reviews

Of Youth
The Way You
Say It
Open Road


Releases - as a sideman

Walk Of


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