TONY DAGRADI is an internationally recognized jazz performer, artist, composer, author and educator. For over three decades he has made his home in New Orleans, performing on tenor and soprano sax with many of the Crescent City's most celebrated artists,... Read More
TONY DAGRADI is an internationally recognized jazz performer, artist, composer, author and educator.
For over three decades he has made his home in New Orleans, performing on tenor and soprano sax with many of the Crescent City's most celebrated artists, including Ellis Marsalis, Allen Toussaint, Professor Longhair, James Booker, The Meters, Dr. John, James Black, Johnny Adams and Gatemouth Brown. An accomplished classical performer as well, he's often called upon to augment the woodwind section of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. His performing past includes five years as a member of the internationally acclaimed Carla Bley band and appearances with Bobby McFerrin, Mose Allison and Nat Adderley.
Dagradi is most well known for his work with Astral Project, an adventurous quartet made up of top New Orleans players dedicated to playing cutting-edge improvisational music. Over the years the band has performed throughout the world, garnering universal praise as one of the most innovative, compelling jazz bands anywhere.
Since 2015, Dagradi has been exploring the visual possibilities of altered books. Choosing from antiquarian texts, vintage encyclopedias and technical manuals, modern publications and graphic novels, he carefully cuts through one page at a time arranging existing images to create a three dimensional collage or sculpture. The results allow the contents and imagery of long outdated or otherwise familiar material to be viewed in a manner that is both exciting and thought provoking.
His recent exhibition record includes “Art Of The Book” - Seager Gray Gallery, Mill Valley, CA; “Ephemera Obscura”, Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, LA; No Dead Artists”, Jonathan Ferrara Gallery, New Orleans, LA; “Books Transposed” (solo show) Jonathan Ferrara Gallery, New Orleans, LA; Pirate: Contemporary Art, Denver, CO.
In addition to his work as a performer, artist and award winning composer, Dagradi has authored several books which focus on saxophone technique and improvisational skills. His newest book, “Sax Solos Over Jazz Standards,” contains twelve modern etudes with a play-along CD and is published by Jamey Aebersold Jazz. Dagradi has been a Professor of Saxophone and Jazz Studies at Loyola since 1990. He maintains a large saxophone studio, teaches classes in improvisation, and directs various