Biography All Music GuideWikipedia
All Music Guide:
Born in 1979, jazz saxophonist Marcus Strickland is a charter member of the 21st century jazz vanguard. Similar to the torrent of artists that appeared on the jazz landscape in the early '80s to pull jazz out of the grasp of the Fusion Era, Strickland, his identical twin brother E.J. Strickland (drummer), and artists such as Jeremy Pelt and Robert Glasper breathed new life into jazz early in the new millennium. During a five-year stint with venerable drummer Roy Haynes, Strickland released two albums on the Fresh Sound New Talent label. At Last was released in 2001, followed by Brotherhood in 2003. Both albums featured precocious peers (Pelt, Glasper, bassist Brandon Owens) playing a lyrical, fiery, contemporary jazz. For the next three years, Strickland toured with artists such as Jeff "Tain" Watts and Haynes and Dave Douglass, while also holding down dates with his own band. In 2006, he independently released Twi-Life, an adventurous double-album on his own label, Strick Muzik. The album received much critical praise and proclaimed him "Best New Artist" in the JazzTimes Readers' Poll. In 2007, the Twi-Life Group released a live album entitled Open Reel Deck on Strick Muzik. The album featured Lage Lund on guitar, Carlos Henderson on electric bass, and E.J. Strickland on drums, as well as trumpeter Keyon Harrold, the hip-hop-tinged poetry of Malachi, and one track with pianist Jon Cowherd. The album displayed the curious side of Strickland's compositional skills through funk, hip-hop, Afro-beat, rock, ska, and jungle grooves. Strickland was voted "Rising Star, Soprano Saxophone" in Downbeat Magazine's 2008 Critic's Poll. He released two albums in 2009 -- Of Song on the Criss Cross label and Idiosyncrasies on his label under the new name of SMK. Of Song, with brother E.J., Ben Williams, and David Bryant was a more straight-ahead set, whereas Idiosyncracies featured Strickland's increasingly daring compositions. Throughout his career, Strickland has worked with a variety of artists, including Mos Def, Nicholas Payton, Christian McBride, and the Charles Tolliver Big Band, Tom Harrell, among others.
Marcus Strickland (born 1979 in Gainesville, Florida) is a jazz soprano, alto and tenor saxophonist who grew up in Miami, Florida who currently lives in New York. Down Beat Magazine's Critic's Poll named Marcus 'Rising Star on Tenor Saxophone' in '10 and 'Rising Star on Soprano Saxophone' in '08 and JazzTimes Magazine's Reader's Poll named him 'Best New Artist' in '06, he placed third in the 2002 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition.
The saxophonist also has seven releases as a leader: Triumph of the Heavy, Vol 1 & 2 ('11), Idiosyncrasies ('09), Open Reel Deck ('07), & Twi-Life ('06) on his own music label Strick Muzik (launched in 2006).; Of Song ('09) on Criss Cross Records; Brotherhood ('02) & At Last('01) on Fresh Sound Records.
In addition to his own trio and quartet, Marcus currently plays with Dave Douglas, Jeff 'Tain' Watts, and also had a five-year stint with legendary drummer Roy Haynes. Strickland has been on two Grammy-nominated recordings (Fountain of Youth - Roy Haynes & Keystone - Dave Douglas). He considers his father an early inspiration as he had been a drummer in jazz and rhythm and blues, but is now a lawyer. Marcus' identical twin brother E.J. Strickland is a drummer, and is currently a member of Marcus' quartet and leads his own quintet as well.
As leaderAt Last (Fresh Sound, 2001) Brotherhood (Fresh Sound, 2003) Twi-Life (Strick Muzik, 2005) Open Reel Deck (Strick Muzik, 2007) Of Song (Criss Cross, 2009) Idiosyncrasies (Strick Muzik, 2009) Triumph of the Heavy, Vol. 1 & 2 (Strick Muzik, to-be-released on September 27, 2011)
With E.J. StricklandIn This Day (Strick Muzik, 2009) 
With Ben WilliamsState of Art (Concord, 2011) 
With Mike MorenoBetween the Lines (World Culture Music, 2007) 
With Roy HaynesFountain of Youth (Dreyfus, 2004) 
With Jeff "Tain" WattsDetained (Half Note, 2004) Jeff "Tain" WattsFolk's Songs (Dark Key Music, 2007) Jeff "Tain" Watts
With Dave Douglas KeystoneKeystone (Greenleaf Music, 2005) Dave DouglasKeystone: Live in Seden (Greenleaf Music, 2006)Dave DouglasMoonshine (Greenleaf Music, 2007) Dave DouglasKeystone: Live at the Jazz Standard (Greenleaf Music, 2008) Dave DouglasSpark of Being (Greenleaf Music, 2010) Dave Douglas
With Lonnie PlaxicoMelange (Blue Note, 2001) Lonnie PlaxicoLonnie Plaxico Live at the 5:01 Jazz Bar (Orchard, 2002) Lonnie PlaxicoLive at the Zinc Bar (Plaxmusic, 2007) Lonnie Plaxico