Mike Smith is an American jazz saxophonist who has released albums as leader on Delmark Records, and his own labels Fastrax and Underground Labs. Mike graduated in 1980 from the University of North Texas and played in the famed One O’Clock Lab Band. He studied with notable saxophone professor Jim Riggs. That same year, he moved to Chicago. He toured with the Maynard Ferguson and Buddy Rich bands in the early 80s. While he was with Buddy Rich, he toured with Frank Sinatra. Since 1981, he has worked for both Frank Sinatra and Frank Sinatra Jr. as featured saxophonist and music contractor. In 1985, he won a National Endowment for the Arts award. In 1993, he won the Cannonball Adderley Award for alto saxophone. He has recorded and performed with Tony Bennett, Harry Connick, Jr., Nancy Wilson, Art Farmer and Nat Adderley. Currently, he is professor of saxophone at Roosevelt University, Chicago College of Performing Arts. In addition, he is a clinician and performing artist for Powell Saxophones and Rico Reeds. Mike is currently on the design team for the Verne Q. Powell Group. Working with Chris French and John Weir they are building and producing an American made saxophone in Elkhart, Indiana. This high end professional instrument will be called “The Silver Eagle” by Powell.
For more information on the Silver Eagle, click here.