JWP Agency / Jim Wadsworth Productions

> Artist Roster (pdf)

Ernie Watts Quartet   

"The celebrated young lions of jazz may have daunting power and speed, but few of them have what tenor saxophonist Watts has honed to perfection; phrasing as natural as falling water and a sound that is at once steeped in tradition and wholly unique.”
- People Magazine

Two-time Grammy Award winner Ernie Watts is one of the most versatile and prolific saxophone players on the music scene. In a diverse career that has spanned more than 40 years, he has been featured on over 500 recordings by artists ranging from Cannonball Adderley to Frank Zappa.

After 15 solo records for a variety of labels, large and small, Watts started Flying Dolphin Records. “I’ve reached a place in my life where I need to make music on my terms and starting my own label provided me with a new sense of freedom,” comments Watts. Flying Dolphin has several projects in release, including numerous titles by the Ernie Watts Quartet and has also re-released many of the fine recordings the artist made for JVC which feature talent such as Arturo Sandoval, Jack DeJohnette, Geri Allen, Mulgrew Miller, Steve Swallow, Jimmy Cobb and Kenny Barron.

Watts started playing saxophone at age 13. He soon won a Downbeat Scholarship to the Berklee College of Music in Boston. He left Berklee for an important spot, playing in the Buddy Rich Band. When he moved to Los Angeles in the 1960s, he began working in the big bands of Gerald Wilson and Oliver Nelson. It was with Oliver Nelson that Watts had the occasion to record with the legendary Thelonious Monk on "Monk’s Blues" (Columbia).

During the 1970s and ‘80s, Watts was immersed in the busy production scene of Los Angeles. His signature sound was heard on countless TV shows and movie scores, almost all the early West Coast Motown sessions and with pop stars such as Aretha Franklin and Steely Dan. At the end of a long day of sessions, he could frequently be heard playing fiery jazz in late-night clubs around Los Angeles.

In 1983, the film composer Michel Colombier wrote an orchestral piece entitled “Nightbird” for Watts. At the work’s inaugural performance at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, Charlie Haden came backstage to introduce himself. The meeting led to Watts becoming a charter member of Haden’s critically acclaimed Quartet West.

Watts’ eclectic mix of career activities includes work with vocalist Kurt Elling and drum legend Billy Cobham. A typical year finds Watts touring Europe with his own quartet, in Asia as a featured guest artist and performing at summer festivals throughout North America and Europe. A skilled educator, he continues his commitment to music education by conducting student workshops and has compiled a collection of orchestral arrangements for guest soloist appearances with symphonies.


A Simple Truth
Ernie Watts Quartet
Flying Dolphin (2014)


Ernie Watts Quartet

Flying Dolphin (2011)

Four Plus Four

Ernie Watts Quartet

Flying Dolphin (2009)

To The Point

Ernie Watts Quartet

Flying Dolphin (2007)

Analog Man

Ernie Watts Quartet

Flying Dolphin (2006)

Spirit Song

Ernie Watts Quartet

Flying Dolphin (2005)


Ernie Watts Quartet

Flying Dolphin (2004)


Ernie Watts & Ron Feuer

Flying Dolphin (2003)

Classic Moods

Ernie Watts

JVC Music (1999)

The Long Road Home

Ernie Watts

JVC Music (1996)


Ernie Watts

JVC Music (1994)

Reaching Up

Ernie Watts

JVC Music (1993)

Stand Up

Ernie Watts

Odyssey (Singapore -1992)

Afoxé (“ah-foh-SHAY”)

Ernie Watts w/Gilberto Gil

CTI (1991)

Ernie Watts w/Gamalon

Ernie Watts w/Gamalon

Amherst (1989)

The Ernie Watts Quartet

Ernie Watts Quartet

JVC Music (1987)


Ernie Watts

Qwest/Warner Bros (1986)


Ernie Watts

Qwest/Warner Bros. (1985)

Chariots Of Fire

Ernie Watts

Qwest/Warner Bros. (1981)

Look In Your Heart

Ernie Watts

Elektra (1980)

The Wonder Bag

Ernie Watts Encounter

Vault (1972)

Come Together

Ernie Watts with Richard "Groove" Holmes

World Pacific Jazz (1970)

Planet Love

Ernie Watts

World Pacific Jazz (1969)


Grammy Awards

1983 -- Best Pop Instrumental "Chariots of Fire"

1985 -- Best rhythm and Blues Instrumental "Musican"

Winner of the 2014 Frankfurt Music Prize

“He is one of the greatest living tenor saxophonists, at the top of his game.”

- Ian Patterson / All About Jazz

Note: all of the documents, audio and video samples below can be downloaded and used in your publicity by opening the item and then saving to your computer.  Or you can copy the link and use the link on your website by right clicking on the link and then selecting "Copy link location".

> Ernie Watts Biography (pdf)
> Frankfurt Music Prize 2014 (pdf)
> Symphony_Orchestra_Arrangements (doc)


> Ernie Watts Press Photo #1
> Ernie Watts Press Photo #2

> Ernie Watts Hi-Res Press Photo #1
> Ernie Watts Hi-Res Press Photo #2
> Ernie Watts Hi-Res Press Photo #3

Audio Samples

"The_Sound: Morning" from "A Simple Truth" Flying Dolphin Records 2014 (mp3 sample)

"No_Lonely_Nights" from "A simple Truth" Flying Dolphin Records 2014 (mp3 sample)

The_Road_We're_On" from " A Simple Truth" Flying Dolphin Records 2014 (mp3 sample).mp3

Ernie Watts Quartet - Crescent (2011 Sample mp3)

Ernie Watts Quartet - Shaw 'Nuff (2011 Sample mp3)

Ernie Watts Quartet - Oasis (2011 Sample mp3)

Ernie Watts Quartet - Reaching Up (Live 2007 Sample mp3)

Ernie Watts Quartet - Season of Change (Live 2007 Sample mp3)

Ernie Watts Quartet - To The Point (Live 2007 Sample mp3)

YouTube Videos

Ernie Watts performs "No Doubt About It" (Live 1986)

Ernie Watts Quartet (Live 2012)

Ernie Watts Quartet perform in Warsaw, Poland (Live 2012)

Artist Web Page


Request PR Materials

Click here to request a printed PR package on the Ernie Watts Quartet including his latest CD*
Click here to request a digital download copy of 
the latest the Ernie Watts Quartet CD*

* Note CD's and digital access to CD's are strictly for performing arts centers, festivals, clubs and for producers of live performances. 
All other  requests should be forwarded to the label. 

  Copyright 2014 JWP Agency / Jim Wadsworth Productions. All rights reserved.