Greg Osby

Greg Osby (born August 3, 1960) is an American saxophonist known for his very personal playing style and compositions.

Greg Osby
Osby performing in 2008
Background information
Born (1960-08-03) August 3, 1960
St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.
GenresFree jazz, free funk, M-Base
Occupation(s)Musician, record label owner
Years active1980–present
LabelsJMT, Blue Note
Associated actsStata Institute, M-Base Collective


Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Osby studied at Howard University, then at the Berklee College of Music. Osby's main instrument is alto saxophone but he occasionally plays soprano saxophone as well. He played with Jack DeJohnette's group Special Edition from 1985-1991and has recorded with Jim Hall and Andrew Hill, among many other legendary icons in music. With Geri Allen, Steve Coleman, Gary Thomas, and Cassandra Wilson, he was a founding member of the M-Base Collective.[1]

He began recording albums under his own name for JMT Records in the 1980s, then recorded for Blue Note in the 1990s. In the 2000s, he formed his own label, Inner Circle Music.[1] He gave exposure to young pianist Jason Moran, who appeared on most of Osby's 1990s albums, including Further Ado, Zero, Banned in New York and Symbols of Light, a double quartet featuring the addition of a string quartet to the band.

He has also played with Phil Lesh and Friends, and he has toured with the Dead, a reincarnation of the Grateful Dead. He was named Jazz Artist of Year in the March 2009 issue of Playboy magazine.[2]


As leader

Title Recorded Released Label Notes
Greg Osby and Sound Theatre May–June 1987 (*) 1987 JMT
Mindgames May 1988 1988 JMT
Season of Renewal July 1989 1989 JMT
Man-Talk for Moderns Vol. X October–November 1990 1991 Blue Note
3-D Lifestyles 1993 Blue Note
Black Book 1995 Blue Note
Art Forum 1996 Blue Note
Further Ado 1997 Blue Note
Zero January 1998 1998 Blue Note
Banned in New York 1998 Blue Note Live
Friendly Fire December 1998 1999 Blue Note with Joe Lovano
New Directions May 1999 2000 Blue Note with Stefon Harris, Jason Moran, Mark Shim
The Invisible Hand September 1999 2000 Blue Note With Gary Thomas, Andrew Hill, Jim Hall, Scott Colley, Terri Lyne Carrington
Symbols of Light (A Solution) January 2001 2001 Blue Note
Inner Circle April 1999 2002 Blue Note
St. Louis Shoes January 2003 2003 Blue Note
Public January 2004 2004 Blue Note Live
Channel Three February 2005 2005 Blue Note
9 Levels August 2008 2008 Inner Circle Music

As sideman

With Franco Ambrosetti

With Cecil Brooks III

With Uri Caine

With Steve Coleman

With Robin Eubanks

With Gary Thomas

With Andrew Hill

With Jason Moran

With Tineke Postma


  1. Ankeny, Jason. "Greg Osby". AllMusic. Retrieved June 4, 2017.
  2. "innercirclemusic ::". Archived from the original on July 23, 2011.
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