Dave Hubbard continues to be an inspiring force in music as a performer, teacher and composer. He began performing on tenor saxophone professionally at the age of 13 with the Baltimore Municipal Band. In 1960 he was selected by the legendary R&B star Maxine Brown for her touring band.
In 1963 Dave started his own group of musically adventurous youngsters, among whom were saxophonist Gary Bartz (Miles Davis group), trumpeter Carl Adams, bassist Mickey Bass, pianist Lonnie Liston Smith and drummer Joe Chambers. Also during this period Dave played the Bohemian Caverns and in the house band at the Howard Theater, both in Washington, D.C.
Dave’s career has embodied him with a broad, rich experience in music as he has performed and toured with the Ray Charles Show, Ethel Ennis, Patti LaBelle, Ruth Brown, Buck Clarke, Kenny Dorham, Roy Haynes, Charles Earland, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Lonnie Liston Smith & The Cosmic Echoes, George Benson and many others.
After receiving his B.A. in music from Morgan State University, and then leaving the Ray Charles Big Band, Dave settled in New York City, where his unique saxophone sound was heard at such venues as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Village Vanguard, The Village Gate, Fat Tuesdays, The Halfnote, Minton's Playhouse, The Bluenote, Count Basie's, The Club Barron, The Five Spot and The Actor’s Theater Workshop.
During his concert tours with Lonnie Liston Smith and the Cosmic Echoes and the years following, Dave composed music which has become known as “jazz fusion.” As one of the architects of the evolution of jazz, Dave asserts that the genre of fusion is simply jazz “taken to a different level of interpretation.” His compositions and charts were studied by Miles Davis and others.
Dave has recorded his original music with his group on releases through Mainstream, Blue Note and Sybarite record labels. His complete discography numbers over fifty recording releases. Hubbard’s full, rich tenor sound can be heard on recordings with Les McCann, Joe Jones, Charles Earland, George Benson and others. Check out Dave’s CD “Groovin’ with Dave Hubbard” on the Debede music label.
“. . . Hubbard’s harmonic pattern is the key to his charm, which is further enhanced by his deftly woven lines in the sinuous elaboration of the melody.”
— LEONARD FEATHER
(Los Angeles Times-Washington Post)
“. . . An internationally acclaimed master of the tenor saxophone, Hubbard has been an exciting and popular presence on the local jazz club scene since the mid-90's when he moved to Palm Beach County, Florida . . . This is the real, uncompromising thing -- jazz as a rush of thrills, music that makes your heart race . . . Hubbard builds a solid, architectural solo with a room-filling tone like Dexter Gordon’s.”
— MATT SCHUDEL
(Jazz Columnist, Sun Sentinel)
“ . . . His tenor has a fat, rich sound that fills the room and promises excitement, and his clean, fiery technique and endless capacity for invention seldom fail to deliver. His solos are packed with riff after swinging riff, from gravelly bass to piercing shrieks and a flood of edgy, focused fluency in between.”
— DAN NEAL
(Palm Beach Post Staff Writer)
“ . . . I was impressed with his complete facility on his horn and his command of the jazz idiom, the way he could aggressively drive through a hard bop tune at a fast pace and then relax back on a lush ballad filled with lyrical turns and warm tones.”
— MICHAEL MATTOX
(Jazz Critic, Heat Beat Magazine)