Jason Marsalis


Drummer Jason Marsalis is the youngest son of pianist and music educator Ellis Marsalis. At age seven, he was sitting in with his father’s jazz group and progressed so rapidly as a drummer that his father started using him for some of his own shows. Shortly after graduation from New Orleans Center for Creative Arts in 1995, Marsalis joined a new group lead by the virtuoso pianist, Marcus Roberts, while also furthering his educational goals at Loyola University in New Orleans. In 2008, Marsalis began playing vibraphone and touring with his vibes quartet. At the same time, he has remained an instrumental member of the Marcus Roberts Trio. His skill at the drum set has been a critical part of the sound and philosophy of the trio for many years, and, in fact, he has been featured on all of Roberts’ recordings for the past 20 years. During that same time period, he continued to release his own recordings both on vibes and on drums. His recording, The 21st Century Trad Band, was critically acclaimed in the jazz world and his newest release is entitled Melody Reimagined, Book 1 (Basin Street Records, 2019). In recent years, Marsalis has also become increasingly known for his own educational contributions. He frequently teaches at the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts and he is a key member of The Modern Jazz Generation group, helping to train many of the younger musicians in the group.