Los Angeles based saxophonist, woodwind player, composer and educator
Gavin Templeton is a Los Angeles based saxophonist, woodwind player, composer and
educator. Gavin spent his formative years in Reno, Nevada. He began studying classical
violin at five years old, but switched to the alto saxophone a few years later. His saxophone
teacher introduced him to the music of Charlie Parker, which deeply affected him. Gavin
felt an instant affinity with bebop music. He memorized Parker tunes and performed
them for friends, family, and at his saxophone teacher’s gigs when he would be invited up
to the bandstand.
Gavin's professional music career began in his teens. He played weekly hits at local venues
and eventually found himself on stage backing visiting artists such as Wayne Newton and
The Temptations. These experiences fueled his desire to continue studying music. He
enrolled in the Jazz Studies program at the University of Nevada, Reno, where he received a
Bachelor of Music degree.
Always curious, Gavin experimented playing in a variety of musical genres and contexts.
During college he performed, recorded, and toured with high energy rock and funk groups.
He views those years as a crucial part in his musical development. The electrifying music
and emotions of rock and funk are integral to his performance style.
Gavin moved to Los Angeles in 2006. He went on to receive a Master’s degree from the
California Institute of the Arts where he focused on composition and performance. In
addition to jazz, he spent significant time studying Indian classical music, West African
drumming, traditional Balkan music, and modern classical composition. That exposure lead
him to join the Eastern European-influenced band, PLOTZ! and co-create the experimental
improv group, DR. MiNT.
Gavin performs under his name in varying configurations, and is a member of the Vinny
Golia Sextet, the Joshua White Quintet and Daniel Rosenboom Quintet/Septet. He has
performed and/or recorded with Charlie Haden, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Nels
Cline, Joe LaBarbera, Vinny Golia, Larry Koonse, Darek Oles, the New Century Players, Butch
Morris, Alfred Ladzekpo, Swapan Chaudhuri, Peter Epstein, David Rosenboom, daKAH Hip
Hop Orchestra, The Temptations, and Wayne Newton, among many others.
Gavin's quintet album 'Asterperious Special' is out on Nine Winds Records. The album is
comprised of his original compositions, and he is joined by Joe LaBarbera (d), Darek Oles
(b), Larry Koonse (g), Gary Fukushima (p).
'In Series' will be his 2013 release on Nine Winds Records. It features Perry Smith (g), Matt
Politano (p), Sam Minaie (b), Matt Mayhall (d).