27 Facts About Anthony Braxton


Anthony Braxton was born on June 4,1945 and is an American experimental composer, educator, music theorist, improviser and multi-instrumentalist who is best known for playing saxophones, particularly the alto.


Anthony Braxton received great acclaim for his 1969 double-LP record For Alto, the first full-length album of solo saxophone music.


Anthony Braxton has released the first six operas in a series called the Trillium Opera Complex.


Anthony Braxton identifies as a "trans-idiomatic" composer and has repeatedly opposed the idea of a rigid dichotomy between improvisation and composition.


Anthony Braxton has written extensively about the "language music" system that forms the basis for his work and developed a philosophy of "world creativity" in his Tri-Axium Writings.


Anthony Braxton taught at Mills College from 1985 to 1990 and was Professor of Music at Wesleyan University from 1990 until his retirement at the end of 2013.


Anthony Braxton is the artistic director of the Tri-Centric Foundation, a nonprofit he founded in 1994 to support the preservation and production of works by Braxton and other artists "in pursuit of 'trans-idiomatic' creativity".


Anthony Braxton's parents divorced when he was young, and his mother remarried Lawrence Fouche, a worker at the Ford Motor Company.


Anthony Braxton grew up living with his mother, stepfather, and three brothers, but still saw his father regularly.


Anthony Braxton was initially stationed in Highland Park, Illinois, where he could continue studies with Jack Gell at the Chicago School of Music, but he later traveled to South Korea with The Eighth Army Band.


Shortly after returning to Chicago, Anthony Braxton's cousin told him about the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians and he attended a concert.


Anthony Braxton played over ten instruments on his 1968 debut, 3 Compositions of New Jazz, the influences for which he identified as Paul Desmond, Ornette Coleman, Eric Dolphy, Jackie McLean, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Miles Davis, James Brown, and the Chicago Transit Authority.


Anthony Braxton was initially pessimistic about making a living as a working musician and began hustling chess, but in 1970 he joined pianist Chick Corea's trio with Dave Holland and Barry Altschul to form the short-lived avant garde quartet Circle.


Anthony Braxton recorded duets with George Lewis and Richard Teitelbaum in the 1970s.


Anthony Braxton's regular group in the 1980s and early 1990s was a quartet with Marilyn Crispell, Mark Dresser and Gerry Hemingway.


Anthony Braxton released multidisc sets, including three quadruple-CD sets for Leo that were recorded on tour in 2003.


Anthony Braxton worked with several groups, including a quintet crediting bassist Mario Pavone as co-leader with Thomas Chapin on saxophone, Dave Douglas on trumpet, and Pheeroan akLaff on drums.


Anthony Braxton's Falling River Musics compositions were documented on 2+2 Compositions.


Anthony Braxton has written several volumes to explain his theories and works, such as the three-volume Tri-Axium Writings and the five-volume Composition Notes, both published by Frog Peak Music.


Anthony Braxton settled on a system of opus-numbers to make referring to these pieces simpler, and earlier pieces have had opus-numbers retroactively added to them.


Anthony Braxton has said that "language music is the basis of my work" and that it serves as the basis for his other compositional systems.


Anthony Braxton emphasizes working with "notation as practiced in black improvised creativity", where it functions "as both a recall-factor as well as a generating factor".


The central thread in a GTM composition is a ceaseless "primary melody", which Anthony Braxton describes as "a melody that never ends".


However, few of the musicians in Stockhausen's orbit could have played the dozens of instruments that Anthony Braxton wanted to feature in Composition 76.


Fortunately, Anthony Braxton could turn to another community of musicians, one much closer to home.


Anthony Braxton's son Tyondai Anthony Braxton is a musician, and the former guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist with American math rock band Battles.


Anthony Braxton's awards include a 1981 Guggenheim Fellowship, a 1994 MacArthur Fellowship, a 2013 Doris Duke Performing Artist Award, a 2014 NEA Jazz Master Award, and a 2020 United States Artists Fellowship.