Musician/Composer Roxy Coss has become one of the most unique and innovative Saxophonists of her generation, a definitional voice of the Millennial Movement in Jazz. Winner of a 2016 ASCAP Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award, the 2015 & 2014 Downbeat Critics’ Polls named her a “Rising Star” on Soprano Saxophone. Originally from Seattle, and now a fixture on the New York scene, she has performed extensively around the world.
In January, Coss released her sophomore recording as a leader, Restless Idealism, on Origin Records, featuring 10 original compositions; the follow-up to her self-titled debut, Roxy Coss (2010). Restless Idealism has been met with critical acclaim, and reached #7 on Jazzweek, the US Nationwide Jazz Chart. Downbeat called her “An exceptional young talent”.
The Roxy Coss Quintet has performed at many of New York City’s top venues, including Smalls, the Zinc Bar, and SMOKE Jazz Club, where the band was in weekly residence from 2012-2014. Club Bonafide, New York’s newest Jazz Venue, is now featuring the Quintet in a monthly residency.
This year, the Roxy Coss Quintet will be featured at the Newport Jazz Festival (Newport, RI). Roxy has also headlined at the famous Jazz Showcase in Chicago, and was featured at the 2015 Ballard Music Festival in Seattle. She has performed as a leader at venues across the US including The Nash (Phoenix, AZ), Pastiche (Tucson, AZ), The Royal Room (Seattle, WA), The Triple Door (Seattle, WA), The Side Door Cafe (Old Lyme, CT), The Palace Theater (Waterbury, CT), Libby’s Jazz Club (Jackson, MI), and The Union (Kalamazoo, MI).
As a side-woman, Coss has performed nationally and internationally with Jazz greats, such as Clark Terry at the world-famous Blue Note Jazz Club, Louis Hayes at historic Minton’s in Harlem, and the Claudio Roditi big band. She is in current rotation with the Mingus Big Band, which is in residence at the Jazz Standard in NYC, and she has been a member of The Diva Jazz Orchestra since 2009. She toured internationally and recorded with trumpeter Jeremy Pelt’s band from 2012 through 2014, as well as with the MACKTET, led by Pelt and drummer Willie Jones III. She is also the Tenor Saxophonist for the Off-Broadway hit, Maurice Hines is Tappin’ Thru Life.
Roxy graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2008 from William Paterson University with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies/Performance, where she studied with Rich Perry, Gary Smulyan, Rich DeRosa, and Mulgrew Miller. In 2011, she was chosen to participate in both the prestigious Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead Residency Workshop at the Kennedy Center, and the acclaimed Steans Institute Jazz Program at the Ravinia Festival, where she studied with Rufus Reid, Curtis Fuller, Nathan Davis, and David Baker.
As a composer, Roxy has collaborated with her mother, Seattle artist Mary Coss, to create the soundtrack entitled Eternal, for an exhibition at METHOD Gallery (Traces, 2015). She was also commissioned by the Daniel Gwirtzman Dance Company to write the score for Breaking, a one-man dance piece (2009), as well as Tribe, a full-length dance show choreographed on commission by the Holocaust Museum of New York City (2010).
As an educator, Roxy has over 15 years of experience. She has led Masterclasses around the country, including Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI), Arizona State University (Tempe, AZ), and JazzEd (Seattle, WA). She has held faculty positions throughout the New York area, including Adjunct Woodwind Teacher at Ramapo High School (Franklin Lakes, NJ), and Director of Jazz Ensemble at Beacon High School (New York, NY). She has performed and taught with JazzReach, led by drummer Hans Schuman; and as the East Coast Representative of Generation Vandoren, worked with young saxophonists around the US. She has also taught at such esteemed Summer Jazz programs as the William Paterson University Summer Jazz Workshop (Wayne, NJ), New York Summer Music Festival (Oneonta, NY), and The Jazz Academy of Music (Silver Spring, MD). Roxy also served as an adjudicator for the 2016 Northern Arizona University Jazz Festival (Flagstaff, AZ).