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Marcus Rojas

"Phenomenal tubist Marcus Rojas" (Whitney Balliet, The New Yorker) is a native of New York City. Considered one of "the best all around tuba players in the world" (Harvey Pekar,Jazziz); among the diverse groups in which he has played are the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Ballet, New York City Opera, American Symphony, American Ballet Theater, Joffrey Ballet, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, the New York Pops, EOS, Radio City Music Hall, Lester Bowie's Brass Fantasy, Charlie Haden's Liberation Music Orchestra, the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Jazz at Lincoln Center with Wynton Marsalis, ensembles led by Gil Evans, George Russell, Jim Hall, Lionel Hampton, Dave Douglas, Wayne Shorter, David Byrne, and P.D.Q. Bach. He has also appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, the Today Show, Saturday Night Live and The Grammys from New York City.

Marcus has played on over three hundred recordings, from CDs of his own groups (Spanish Fly and Les Miserables Brass Band) to Reggae stars Sly and Robbie and the Metropolitan Opera. He has performed and recorded with Michael Jackson, Ray Charles, Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, Dawn Upshaw, Queen Latifah, Donnie Osmond, Dr. John, Harry Connick Jr., Aretha Franklin, They Might be Giants, and Rosie O'Donell among others. He has recorded for every major film, television and record company in the United States as well as countless commercial jingles and over 60 film scores including Wolf, Interview with the Vampire, Mission to Mars, Muppet Christmas Carol, Ed Wood, You've Got Mail, The Spanish Prisoner, Fargo, Snake Eyes, Primary Colors,101 Dalmations, Shaft, S.W.A.T., American Splendor, Everything is Illuminated and Sleepless in Seattle. He can be heard daily on Nick Jr's. Oswald and the Backyardigans.


An avid proponent of contemporary classical and improvised music, he performs solo and duo recitals with flutist Helen Campo, and is a founding member of SingleTree, a trio of flute, tuba and marimba. He was a member of Henry Threadgill's Very Very Circus and has performed the premieres of composers LaMonte Young, Peter Zummo, Gunther Schuller, Ralph Shapey, Philip Johnston, Anne LeBaron, Tom McKinley, Daniel Pinkham, Peter Schickele and John Zorn. New music groups he performs with include Contuum, the SEM Ensemble and the Kamakazi Ground Crew. He did the World Tour of Robert Wilson's Knee Plays.


Broadway credits include The Flying Karamotzov Brothers Do the Impossible, State Fair and Candide.


Dedicated to giving back so much of what was given to him, Marcus performs over 30 children's concerts and workshops yearly. He has given master classes throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe on topics ranging from Imagination; Creating Your own Musical World, to Why do We Play? and Breathing; How Much is Enough.

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Liner Notes

Marshall Gilkes: Cyclic Journey

Read "Marshall Gilkes: Cyclic Journey" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Wonders never cease with Marshall Gilkes. Having previously reached extraordinary heights as a leader on a breakout quartet set, two standout quintet dates, a pair of essential releases with the WDR Big Band and one stunning trio album, this celebrated trombonist and composer now moves beyond known borders. Directing and fronting a sui generis assemblage merging a top-shelf rhythm combo with a brilliant brass ensemble, he uncovers and explores the conventions of his own cyclic journey. “I wrote the music ...

Album Review

Michael Blake: Combobulate

Read "Combobulate" reviewed by Chris May

The instrumentation alone promises something out of the ordinary. Saxophone, two tubas, trumpet, trombone, drums. Then there are the musicians, luminaries of downtown New York jazz. Michael Blake, Bob Stewart, Marcus Rojas, Steven Bernstein, Clark Gayton, Allan Mednard. And within seconds of the needle descending on track one, side one, Combobulate starts delivering on the promise. The album is one of four marking the return of audiophile-vinyl label Newvelle after a two-year hiatus. The approximate meaning of its ...

Album Review

John Ellis, Andy Bragen: The Ice Siren

Read "The Ice Siren" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

Dopo Dreamscapes e MOBRO John Ellis e Andy Bragen firmano un altro lavoro d'ampio respiro, che si snoda in equilibrio tra scrittura cameristica, jazz e opera contemporanea. Ellis ha scritto la musica e partecipa come strumentista; Bragen ha composto il libretto, ispirandosi al filone gothic fantasy di autori come Tim Burton ne “La sposa cadavere" (titolo originale The Corpse Bride). L'opera è stata commissionata dalla Jazz Gallery di New York e presentata lo scorso anno durante ...

Album Review

Charles Pillow Ensemble: Chamber Jazz

Read "Chamber Jazz" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Chamber Jazz, alto saxophonist Charles Pillow's eighth recording as leader of his ensemble, is a generally sedate but remarkably engaging series of tone poems that combine contemporary jazz with elements of classical music to produce a hybrid that underlines what is most harmonious and charming in each genre. Chamber Jazz is what it says, and chamber jazz is what it is. For comparison's sake, think of the ensemble as the Modern Jazz Quartet times five. True, there is no John ...

Musician 2 Musician

Marcus Rojas: Dancing with a Tree

Read "Marcus Rojas: Dancing with a Tree" reviewed by Michael Blake

Sometimes musicians transcend what is considered normal technique. They discover new worlds of sound and establish concepts previously unknown; concepts that even defy the practical methods that the inventors of the instrument intended. One person I know that has done just that is Marcus Rojas. In third grade he decided to play the tuba and, even though his family asked why he wouldn't play a more common instrument like trumpet or trombone, he stuck with it. Today, Marcus is one ...


Marcus Rojas: Finding the Sound World

Read "Marcus Rojas: Finding the Sound World" reviewed by Sean Patrick Fitzell

Scurrying through the apartment, he was already running late for a rehearsal. Passing bags of CDs, many of which he played on, and un-hung framed photos from tours and bands past, he rummaged for keys, money for cab, the music to be rehearsed, mouthpiece. When he gathered everything, Marcus Rojas slung his tuba over his shoulders and stole out the door. It's a familiar scene for the 44-year-old, who's been riding the resurgent interest in tuba for ...

Album Review

Dave Douglas: Mountain Passages

Read "Mountain Passages" reviewed by Brandt Reiter

A chunky stew of countless cultural influences and myriad musical forms, jazz has always stolen freely from just about anything it could get its hands on. This unfettered kleptomania has always been key to music's vibrant nature, yet at the same time has made the music itself increasingly difficult to define. Case in point: pathologically restless trumpeter/composer Dave Douglas' Mountain Passages , the first release by his newly minted Greenleaf label. The 41-year-old Douglas, who seems intent on ...

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Performance / Tour

Burton Greene (Mon) Marcus Rojas's Big Happy (Tue) Sanda & the New Gang (Wed) Paul Shapiro's Ribs and Brisket Revue (Thu) This Week at Cornelia Street

Burton Greene (Mon) Marcus Rojas's Big Happy (Tue) Sanda & the New Gang (Wed) Paul Shapiro's Ribs and Brisket Revue (Thu) This Week at Cornelia Street

Source: Jim Eigo, Jazz Promo Services

This Week At Cornelia Street Cafe Mon Jul 02 6:00PM BURTON GREENE TRIO (George Schuller, drums;Ed Schuller, bass;Burton Greene, piano) This is a new group, although the players know each other and have been friends for years. The idea of the piano trio is to present jazz which emcompasses a wide history of the jazz piano literature. We play “inside", “outside", “up and down", for that matter.. The group members have vast experiences in all kinds ...



Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson


Newvelle Records


Cyclic Journey

Self Produced


Chamber Jazz

Summit Records


The Ice Siren

Parade Light


Rare Metals

Greenleaf Music



From: Rare Metals
By Marcus Rojas



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