The famous and legendary jazz artist Jerome Najee Rasheed or better known as Najee is truly one of the greatest jazz artists of our time. The saxophonist and flautist has had a remarkable music career and has given us some incredible soul touching music. Jazz is not just a genre of music, but it is a feeling, an emotion that creates pure bliss and energizes the soul. The visionary artist has enjoyed an enviable three-decade career by staying true to his own artistic vision. With awe-inspiring and mesmerizing performances, he truly has magic in his creations. So we’re going to take you through his amazing music journey and how he reached the heights where he is today.
Born in New Your City, he spent the majority of his teenage years in Queens. His father died at an early age and he and his siblings were raised by his mother, who played a very big role in his music career by always supporting and motivating him. His music career began at school when he was just eight years old where he started playing the Clarinet. But deep down his desire was to play the saxophone. Najee was inspired at a very young age by hearing the music of legendary jazz musicians like Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong, and other such amazing artists.
The turning point in Najee’s music career came when he decided to become a professional jazz musician. When he was in high school he took up jazz as a subject at the Jazz-mobile program where he worked and developed his skills on the saxophone and flute. At age sixteen, he studied flute at the Manhattan School of Music Preparatory Division, where he took lessons with Harold Jones. He takes inspiration from saxophonists such as John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Joe Henderson and various other amazing musicians.
After his education, Najee began his career as a young artist performing in local bands in the New York City area. Najee’s first world tour was with a band from New York City called “Area Code”. And finally in 1987, he released his debut album titled “Najee’s Theme”, which earned the musician a Grammy Award nomination for the Best Jazz Album. His second album too was a super hit which was titled “Day By Day” and went platinum. And in 1990 his album “Tokyo Blue” was released which was produced by his brother Fareed, and it is one of his most successful recordings to date. Gradually his music career advanced and he earned a big name and reputation for himself in the music industry and showcased the potential and talent he housed.
The jazz genre has seen some incredible artists but Najee is one phenomenal artist with awe-inspiring music. His soul touching and mesmerizing music has made a place in our hearts and has influenced the jazz music genre a lot. He is an inspiration and an artist to look up to for many young jazz musicians, and we truly can’t appreciate how much he has given to the jazz music genre.