Styles: Straight-Ahead Jazz, Post-Bop, New Orleans Jazz, Modal Music, Standards
The Marsalis Family was a one-off project assembled for a 1982 Columbia recording date. Pianist Ellis Marsalis teamed up with his young-lion sons Wynton (trumpet) and Branford (tenor sax) (though brothers Delfeayo and Jason were too young to participate). Together, with bassist Charles Fambrough and drummer James Black, the Marsalis Family recorded five tunes that made up half of the LP Fathers and Sons (the other half featured the father-son saxophone team of Von and Chico Freeman). It wasn't the first or last time the three recorded together, but it was the only time they were specifically billed as the Marsalis Family. In 2003, they released the live album The Marsalis Family: A Celebration which featured the family performing live in 2001 to mark Ellis' retirement from teaching at New Orleans University. In 2010, the Marsalis Family released the similarly themed live charity album Music Redeems which benefitted The Ellis Marsalis Center for Music - part of the New Orleans Habitat Musicians' Village.
- Steve Huey (All Music Guide)