Derek Brown

Artist Photo

“Hands down, Légère makes the most consistent and durable reeds on the market today. With Légère reeds, I know exactly what I'm going to get from each individual reed I order. I can't say that about any other reed I've tried. Also, no other reeds can withstand the strain I put on them with my beatbox style. One reed will last you a LONG time. Make the switch to Légère, and you'll never go back! I used to go back and forth between various brands of reeds, until I discovered Légère; I am a fan for life!” - Derek

Saxophone innovator Derek Brown lives and performs in Chicago. Crossing genres from jazz to funk to pop, Derek's unique playing style, using creative, new "beatbox-like" techniques, has wowed audiences across the world.

With a fairly straightforward musical upbringing in small-town Michigan, Derek really started to show some creative musical juice in the summers between years at Hope College. As one third of the jazz/bluegrass hybrid band, Afterthought, Derek began to write original tunes and experiment with the saxophone. By the time he left grad school at the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music he was well on his way to creating his own unique approach to playing.

For the next six years, Derek was the Director of Jazz Studies at Abilene Christian University, way down in Abilene, Texas. In between teaching classes and lessons, directing the various jazz ensembles, starting up the annual Abilene Jazz Fest, and lots of grading, Derek formed a few different jazz/rock fusion groups playing his original compositions: Derek Brown and the Chauffeurs and The Derek Brown Collective.

On the side, when asked to play for some non-profit events, instead of asking his fellow musicians to play for free (not easy to do!), Derek further challenged himself to see how full a sound he could get out of one horn, with no electronic help. Using some established techniques like slap-tonguing and double-tonguing, as well as some not-so-established techniques like Tartini tones and various new percussive sounds, Derek found something truly fresh!

You can see and learn about this new way of playing the saxophone on his popular BEATBoX SAX YouTube channel, where Derek is releasing a new tutorial every week.
Why Derek Brown prefers Légère reeds 
The Duo Project - Derek Brown & David Youngman (2013) 
JazzGrass - Afterthought - Derek Brown, David Youngman, Michael Youngman (2011)