Described by NPR Music as “a trumpeter of deep expressive resources and a composer of kaleidoscopic vision,” Ambrose Akinmusire has made a home at the crossroads of different musical forms and languages, from post-bop and avant-garde jazz to contemporary chamber music and hip-hop to singer-songwriter aesthetics. He began recording for Blue Note in 2011, earning widespread acclaim for his albums when the heart emerges glistening (produced by Jason Moran), the imagined savior is far easier to paint (“gorgeous, moving” – JazzTimes), A Rift in Decorum: Live at the Village Vanguard (“amazingly effective” – DownBeat), Origami Harvest (Top Albums of 2018, New York Times, Philadelphia Inquirer, Los Angeles Times), and on the tender spot of every calloused moment (2021 GRAMMY nominee, Best Jazz Instrumental Album).
Akinmusire has also received numerous prestigious composer commissions; created music for film and television projects including the new Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal series “Blindspotting”; appeared as a featured soloist with the legendary artists Archie Shepp and Roscoe Mitchell; and made signal contributions to groundbreaking albums including Mary Halvorson’s Code Girl, Brad Mehldau’s Finding Gabriel and Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly (on the closing track “Mortal Man”). He also played on Joni Mitchell’s 2014 release Love Has Many Faces, and in 2018 accompanied Chaka Khan, James Taylor and other luminaries honoring Mitchell in a gala concert documented on Joni 75: A Birthday Celebration. Other sideman highlights include Jack DeJohnette, Marcus Miller, Terri Lyne Carrington, Steve Coleman and many others.