Daily Fill #102: Brice Winston: Finding Your Musical Voice


What is Up, Everyone?! Welcome Back. On Today’s Lesson, Scott invited world-renowned Saxophonist Brice Winston. This is an amazing episode because Brice has played with some outstanding drummers throughout his careers such as Brian Blade, Eric Harland, Marcus Gilmore, Kendrick Scott, Lewis Nash, Justin Brown, and much more. Brice Winston is a wonderful performer and educator. The main reason why I invited him on, other than his extensive performance experience, is because of the perspective he has with drummers and music in general. Brice works with young developing drummers through The Tucson Jazz Institute where he teaches jazz combos, and furthermore, he has performed with some of the giant drum set players like I mentioned earlier. His perspective is great because he is NOT a drum set player by profession, however; he coaches drummers regularly, and so he has feedback other than just the technical side to the instrument. He talks about Music not just the pedagogy of the drum set. When I studied with him, this was the most amazing aspect of our lessons. I was so used to being coached about music, but like 75% to 90% was technical stuff.

When I got to studying with Brice, he only talked about music and showed me how to get really good at finding my voice, improvisation, and keeping time. He also is a walking encyclopedia when it comes to knowing great jazz drummers just because they played on his favorite albums. He introduced me to Billy Hart, Paul Motian, Roy Haynes, and the modern drummers like Marcus Gilmore, Kendrick Scott, and more. This is an incredible interview with some amazing knowledge for not just the developing drummer, but a seasoned pro too.

About our guest:

Brice Winston is an American born saxophonist and composer

currently living in Tucson, AZ. After attending school at the University of New Orleans, he initially stepped out with trumpeter Nicholas Payton before joining forces with Grammy Award-winning trumpeter/composer Terence Blanchard. Brice’s 16 year residency in New Orleans and his association with Blanchard has afforded him is the opportunity to record and/or perform with some of the greatest musicians in jazz, including Herbie Hancock, Dave Holland, Ellis Marsalis, Lionel Loueke, Robert Glasper, Aaron Parks, Marcus Miller, Dizzie Gillespie, Branford Marsalis, Nneena Freelon, Dianne Reeves, Brian Blade, Patty Austin, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Mark Whitfield, Mark Turner, Nicholas Payton, and Eric Harland, among others. Brice appears as a composer and a performer on numerous Blanchard film scores and CD releases, including his latest effort, Magnetic.

Brice is also one of the co-owners of the Tucson Jazz Institute (TJI) Community Music School in Tucson, AZ. TJI focuses primarily on teaching jazz to middle and high school students in and around southern Arizona. TJI’s ensembles have earned national and international recognition, with its Ellington Band winning the Essentially Ellington competition in New York at Jazz at Lincoln Center, and earning the top high school jazz band title from Downbeat Magazine. Brice has spent a considerable amount of time on education, appearing as a guest clinician for such prestigious programs as the Thelonious Monk Institute for jazz and the Henry Mancini Institute for jazz, in addition to appearing as a guest artist and clinician at various universities and colleges.

Brice endorses RSBerkeley saxophones and Rico Reeds. 

Key Points from today’s episode:

  • How Brice got his start playing Saxophone, Finding his Love for Jazz, and help starting the Tucson Jazz Institute.
  • Brice explains some great points about competition, finding your voice, listening, and musical development. Realizing and understanding perspectives from other musicians is an important part to live performance
  • Brice shares with us the ONE Attribute he wants drummers to have.

That’s it for today’s lesson. Enjoy the Interview!

– Scott

Links for Brice




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If you missed any of last weeks episode you can catch a quick link to any of the episodes below

Scott’s Drum Lesson

Daily Motivation for Drummers with Richard

Morning fuel with J.C. Clifford

Drum Rants with Kevin

Last Friday’s Podcast 

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