Profile: Kamasi Washington

Kamasi Washington is an American jazz saxophonist, usually playing tenor saxophone.

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Career

Washington was born in Los Angeles, California. He is a graduate of the Academy of Music of Alexander Hamilton High School in Beverlywood, Los Angeles. Washington next enrolled in UCLA’s Department of Ethnomusicology, where he began playing with faculty members such as Kenny Burrell, Billy Higgins and band leader/trumpeter Gerald Wilson. Washington features in the album Young Jazz Giants in 2004.

Washington joined the Gerald Wilson Orchestra for its 2005 album In My TimeWashington played saxophone on Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly. His debut solo recording, The Epic, was released in May 2015. The mini-album/EP Harmony of Difference followed in September 2017. His second full-length studio album, Heaven and Earth, was released in June 2018, with a companion EP titled The Choice released a week later.

Kamasi Washington was featured in the final episode of Homeland as himself, performing a live show where protagonist Carrie Mathison was in the audience.

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