Carl G. Grubbs, alto, soprano and tenor saxophonist and composer was born in Philadelphia, PA. He received early extensive training from his mentor, John Coltrane. Through his family, Carl was close to many of the history-making jazz musicians of the 1950’s and 1960’s. Since moving to Baltimore in 1980, his career can best be described as one of diversity: composer, performer, teacher, leader, recording artist and presenter. The music performed by the Carl Grubbs Ensemble is rooted in the traditions of the jazz art form. His greatest influences are Charlie Parker and John Coltrane. The Carl Grubbs Ensemble performs the original music of Carl Grubbs and jazz standards.
Saxophonist (alto, soprano, tenor), composer, performing & recording artist
Jazz Band Director, St. Paul’s School, Private lessons 1995-Present
Conducted Workshops in Jazz Performance & Improvisation, Randallstown H.S., Baltimore County, MD 2010- 2012
Co-founder Maryland Center for Creative Music 1987-1989
Co-founder Contemporary Arts Inc. 1997
Camp Director/Instructor Summer Activity Extraordinare (SAX) Music & Dance 1997-Present
Recent Performances (updated July 2016):
July 17, 2016, Carl Grubbs Jazz String Ensemble, ARTSCAPE, Brown Center, Baltimore, MD
Sept. 23, 2016, Celebrating John Coltrane at 90, Church of the Ascension, Philadelphia Jazz Project, Philadelphia, PA.
Sept 24, 2016, Celebrating John Coltrane at 90, Carl Grubbs Ensemble with special guest Rene McLean, Eubie LIVE!, Baltimore, MD
November 14, 2015 – Carl Grubbs Ensemble “Strayhorn, Hodges/Coltrane,” Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum, BeMoJazz/Eastriverjazz, Washington, DC.
September, 2015 – Carl Grubbs Ensemble with special guest Jaleel Shaw, Annual John Coltrane Concert,
The Ward Center for the Arts, St. Pauls Schools, Brooklandville, MD.
October 6, 2017 A Tribute to Thelonious Monk. Carl Grubbs Quartet, at Eubie LIVE, A Free Fall Baltimore Event, Baltimore, MD
October, 2015/2016 – Carl Grubbs: “An Evening of Artistic Excellence,” Baltimore Museum of Art,
Contemporary Arts Inc/BOPA, A Free Fall Baltimore Event, Baltimore, MD.
October, 2015, Carl Grubbs Jazz/String Ensemble, “Inner Harbor Suite Revisited: A Tribute to Baltimore,”
Contemporary Arts Inc/BOPA, A Free Fall Baltimore Event
May 2015 – Carl Grubbs Jazz/String Ensemble performs his original compositions, “Inner Harbor Suite Revisited: A Tribute to Baltimore," The Ward Center for the Arts, St. Pauls School, Brooklandville, MD
March, 2015 Carl Grubbs Ensemble performs “BeBop Madness,” celebrating the jazz masters who made contributions to the development of bebop.
Performed at Special Events:
Reggie Workman’s presentation of Africa Brass, Philadelphia, PA
Maryland Traditions Apprentice Awards Showcases at ARTSCAPE and Creative Alliance, Baltimore, MD
Textural Rhythms: Constructing the Jazz Tradition, Reginald F, Lewis Museum, Baltimore, MD
Maryland Traditions Project Grant with Lafayette Gilchrist, performing the music of Eubie Blake,
Chick Webb, Billie Holiday, Albert Dailey and Carl Grubbs, various venues, Baltimore, MD
Tributes to John Coltrane – Bunker Hill Community College, Boston, MA; The Clef Club, Philadelphia, PA;
Guelph Jazz Festival, Ontario, Canada; An Die Musik and Eubie Blake Center, Baltimore, MD, Cultural Arts Centers in Medellin and Bogota, Columbia and eight cities in Brazil.
“In Celebration of Black History Month” (13) Carl Grubbs & Rene McLean, Randallstown Community Center
Jazz Appreciation Month, “Celebrating Ellington,” Fort DuPont Park Community Center, Washington, DC.
Jazz in the Sculpture Garden, Joshua Johnson Society, Baltimore Museum of Art
(Available at Amazon.com, CD Baby.com and local music outlets)
Inner Harbor Suite Revisited: A Tribute to Baltimore (2016)
Maryland Traditions in Jazz, Carl Grubbs/Lafayette Gilchrist Ensemble, January 2010
Brother Soul, CIMP label, May 2006
Stepping Around The Giant, CIMP label (2003)
Reflections, B&C Productions (2002)
Live at the BMA: Inner Harbor Suite, B&C Productions, (1994)
Live at The New Haven Lounge, B&C Productions, (1993)
Julius Hemphill, Fat Man and The Hard Blues, Black Saint, 1991
Odean Pope, Two Dreams, CIMP label 2004
Broto Roy Live, Total Immersion, Buzkashi, 2001
The Visitors (Carl and Earl Grubbs) NEPTUNE, MOTHERLAND, IN MY YOUTH AND REBIRTH, Muse Records, 1972-74
2014 The Ruby’s Award (Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance)
2009 Mary Sawyers Baker Prize (William G. Baker Memorial Fund)
2009 Rosa Pryor Scholarship Fund
2009 Baltimore Magazine – Best Jazz Musician
1995 Baltimore Magazine – Best Jazz CD
1987 – National Endowment for the Arts – Performance grant for the DC Jazz Workshop Orchestra
1983 – National Endowment for the Arts/Rouse Company & Harborplace Merchants Association
Performance grant for Concerts and Workshops at the Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD
Chamber Music America
AFM Musician Union