David Demsey is Coordinator of Jazz Studies and Curator of the Living Jazz Archives at William Paterson University.
David Demsey is Coordinator of Jazz Studies and Curator of the Living Jazz Archives at William Paterson
University. He has appeared with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra since 1999 including numerous
performances of Pucchinni’s Turandot, and Nixon in China conducted by composer John Adams, and has
performed with the New York Philharmonic since 1994 including an all-Gershwin recording and two world
tours. His Golden Crest album Demsey Plays Wilder features the jazz and chamber music of Alec Wilder. He
is a member of the New Hudson and American Saxophone Quartets, toured with the Kirov Orchestra, is a
member of big bands led by Phil Woods (now the Deer Head Jazz Orchestra) and Dick Meldonian, and
appeared with such artists as Clark Terry, pianists Mulgrew Miller, James Williams and Jim McNeely, and
bassists Milt Hinton and Rufus Reid. Demsey’s book John Coltrane Plays Giant Steps (Hal Leonard) is widely
known; he co-authored Alec Wilder: A Biobibliography (Greenwood Press), and edited the new edition of
Wilder’s autobiographical Letters I Never Mailed (University of Rochester Press). His “Improvisation and
Concepts of Virtuosity” is the final essay in the Oxford Jazz Companion. A longtime Saxophone Journal
Contributing Editor, his articles appear in Down Beat, Instrumentalist, Jazz Educators Journal, and Journal of
Jazz Studies, and he wrote liner notes for five Verve Records CDs. His graduate degrees are from Eastman
School of Music and the Juilliard School, and has been a Selmer Saxophone Clinician since 1988.