Jesse Colford is a musician and composer who uses a variety of styles and instruments to find expression. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Saxophone Performance and Composition from Boston University, summa cum laude, where he put on a junior recital and two senior recitals. He has studied saxophone with both Amy McGlothlin and Jennifer Bill, and composition with Rodney Lister. He is originally from North Andover, MA, where he participated highly in public school music and theater programs and held student leadership positions.
As a performer, Jesse has played in many ensembles including wind ensembles, jazz bands, marching bands, choirs, and chamber groups, often being featured as a soloist. He performed solo saxophone music at the 2017 NASA (North American Saxophone Alliance) Regional Conference at Bridgewater State University in addition to his junior and senior saxophone recitals. He also has experience performing with percussion, piano, and bass guitar, and gigs regularly with jazz combos and his band Cathartic Conundrum.
As a composer, Jesse has written and arranged works for chamber ensembles, jazz groups, large ensembles, solo musicians and electronics. His first original piece was performed as part of an AP Music Theory project in 2013. At BU, he had works read by the University’s Wind Ensemble and Orchestra, and works performed on Student Composer's Concerts and recitals. He also takes an active role in songwriting and arranging for Cathartic Conundrum and other non-academic groups.
Jesse believes that music should be accessible and enjoyable to the untrained listener, and that it can be a driving force for compassion and empathy in our communities. While receiving his training in classical theory and repertoire, he also spent time practicing and performing jazz, rock, and popular styles. Recently, he has also been more active in social justice issues through music. He performs as a singer and saxophonist in the nonprofit choir Voices 21C, which spends a week abroad every summer working with communities to encourage global empathy and understanding. He also visited the men’s prison in Norfolk, MA to participate in an Empowering Song class with the inmates, as part of BU’s Prison Education Program, then brought ideas from the experience into public performances in Boston. Jesse hopes to continue community work through music, understanding that genre can be an important element in accessing people’s hearts.