A Master Class in Jazz

RICHMOND, Va. — Legendary saxophone player James “Saxsmo” Gates and percussionist Taylor Moore continually regale audiences throughout the globe with their spectacular crowd-pleasing performances in jazz and other musical genres.

James Gates - Together We Can Make It-2

James “Saxsmo” Gates

On September 30, 2017, these two talented musicians will discuss the impact of music and media that led to their success during a lecture/demonstration, “A Master Class in Jazz for the Young and Not-So- Young.”

Presented by the BND Institute of Media and Culture and MLH Assets Management LP, the program is designed to spark an interest in jazz among students ages 10-16. However, all generations are encouraged to attend. The free program will take place from 10 a.m. – noon at the Richmond Performing Arts Alliance, 600 E. Grace Street, Richmond, Va.

Growing up in Richmond, Va., Gates was constantly surrounded by jazz. His father, the late James Bryant “Boo” Gates Sr., played saxophone for Della Reese’s band, and other


Taylor Moore

well-known musicians. Gates graduated from John F. Kennedy High School in 1978. He attended Virginia State University and later transferred under a full scholarship to the prestigious Berklee College of Music where he graduated in 1984. Gates received his master’s degree in Jazz Studies from North Carolina Central University in 2011, and is the director/coordinator of the Dr. Billy Taylor Jazz Studies Program at Virginia State University.


Beloved by a legion of fans in his hometown, Gates has played and traveled extensively throughout the United States and abroad, performing with such notable artists as Joe Kennedy, Jr., Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Walter Davis, Jr., Walter Bishop, Jr., The Temptations, Dianne Reeves, Jimmy Cobb, Hod O’Brien, Larry Willis, Roberta Flack, Marvin Gaye, Larry Carlton, Billy Kilson, Jeff Lorber, Alex Bugnon and The Main Ingredients.

Gates credits the forefathers and Masters of Jazz for his musical foundation and passes it along every chance he gets by serving as a teacher and instructor of jazz. He has released several CDS featuring artists such as Fred Wesley, Freddie Fox and Walter Beasley. Gates celebrated the release of his single, “Together We Can Make It,” on Sept. 8, 2017.


Born and raised in Chicago, Taylor Moore’s home was filled with various musical genres, whether it boomed from the radio or emanated from the record collection owned by her mother, Trudy Moore, a former entertainment writer for Jet magazine.

A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Taylor received her bachelor’s degree in music performance and production.

Dubbed The Princess of Percussion, Moore has played with a multitude of great musicians such as Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Famer Shirley Alston Reeves of the Shirelles, jazz fusion artists Roy Ayers, Boney James, Shelia E. and Patrice Rushen, gospel greats Marvin Winans and the late Andre Crouch, as well as jazz icons Kurt Elling, Jimmy Cobb and Grammy Award-winning vocalist Cassandra Wilson.

“Taylor Moore has a rare and glorious gift! I’m enthralled with her technique, movement and passion,” exclaims Wilson.

Saxophonist Boney James shows equal excitement and praise for Moore’s talent.

“When she is performing, she’s IN IT and that comes off the stage,” says James. “She has a lot of charisma and stage presence!”

Contact: Bonnie Newman Davis


804 683-7203

The BND Institute of Media and Culture, Inc. provides programs, services and training dedicated to educating
and engaging diverse audiences about contemporary news media and its impact on African-American life and culture.