Howard Wiley (saxophone) was born in Berkeley and displayed a unique musical talent from a very young age, while performing at his local church. He says, “the first time I picked up the saxophone, it became a part of me, like an additional limb. I knew I had found my purpose.”
Wiley studied the saxophone in high school, and soon thereafter was selected to participate in the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz’s All-Star Band, a group of young lions who studied and performed with jazz greats including Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, and Gerald Albright. He then received a scholarship to the Berklee School of Music; where he graduated with honors. During this time, he also met and collaborated with rising stars of jazz in Los Angeles including Kamasi Washington, Tony Austin, and Miles Mosley (a collective now known as the West Coast Get Down). To this day, Wiley is a member; recording and touring internationally with the group when not working on his solo projects.
Wiley’s love of jazz and arranging has led him to fuse his jazz sounds with funk. Ever the soulful live musician, he has built a strong reputation for presenting jazz concerts “that you can dance to.”
Wiley has toured internationally, recording and performing with artists including Lauryn Hill, Sheila E, Cory Henry, Christian McBride, and Chester Thompson. He is a founding member of the new Bay Area collective Black London, which is currently performing in and around Northern California. He continues to perform worldwide with other artists and with his solo project at the San Francisco Jazz Festival, Playboy Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Fest, and Blue Note Club, to name a few.