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Pete Robbins

Pete Robbins (age 35) moved to New York in September, 2002, and immediately became “a welcome presence on the creative music scene” (Time Out New York). He has since performed or recorded with Vijay Iyer, John Hollenbeck, John Zorn, Craig Taborn, Mark Dresser, Ben Monder, Mario Pavone, Kenny Wollesen, Tyshawn Sorey, Dan Weiss, Thomas Morgan, and countless others, and has performed at festivals and clubs in nine different countries. Robbins’ leads “an ambitious ensemble that combines spacious avant-gardism with the melodic punch of rock” (New York Times), and has been called a "style master" (AllAboutJazz.com), "fiercely creative" (Time Out New York), and "a real force" in jazz (pianist Paul Bley). His studio releases “Waits and Measures” (Playscape) and “Do The Hate Laugh Shimmy” (Fresh Sound/New Talent) were both named as top-10 jazz releases in 2006 and 2008, respectively; Robbins's fourth album as a bandleader will be released on May 25, 2010 on his own Hate Laugh Music label. Robbins has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, JazzTimes, JazzWise, Jazzman, and National Public Radio.


For his compositional achievements, Chamber Music America recently awarded Robbins with their prestigious “New Works: Creation and Presentation” grant as well as their "New Works: Encore" award on behalf of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. Robbins has also been a guest adjudicator for the Brooklyn Arts Council, acts as Managing Director at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, and works with various organizations in a music education capacity.


Album Review
Album Review
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“Mr. Robbins, an industrious and venturesome alto saxophonist and clarinetist, leads...an ambitious ensemble that combines spacious avant-gardism with the melodic punch of rock...[He has] a cool tone and a thoughtfully off kilter sensibility.…[C]omplex but welcoming... Mr. Robbins plays with coolness as well as confidence. ...[H]is compositions seem to breathe according to some collective whim." (Nate Chinen, New York Times) "No doubt, Robbins’ third solo outing looms as a logical progression of his spiraling notoriety within global jazz circles....A compelling and irrefutably, entertaining effort...Robbins should win over a horde of admirers with this outing, which conveys asymmetrical parts chops, gusto, funk, fusion and a clear-sighted view of the jazz canon

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Primary Instrument

Saxophone, alto

Willing to teach

Advanced only


Managing Director, Brooklyn Conservatory of Music (bqcm.org)

Clinic/Workshop Information

leads workshops across the US and Europe on contemporary improvisation and composition



Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson


Hate Laugh Music


Live In Basel

Hate Laugh Music


Live in Brooklyn

Not Two Records



Hate Laugh Music


siLENT Z Live

Hate Laugh Music


Do The Hate Laugh...

Fresh Sound Records


Waits and Measures

From: Waits & Measures
By Pete Robbins


Dave Liebman
saxophone, soprano
David Binney
saxophone, alto
Mark Turner
saxophone, tenor
Tim Berne
saxophone, alto
band / ensemble / orchestra
Jerome Sabbagh
saxophone, tenor
Todd Sickafoose
bass, acoustic

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