Matt Willard was born in Newport News, Virginia and has lived in Virginia for the majority of his life. He started playing saxophone in sixth grade. He later auditioned for his middle school jazz band and not only got in but had a solo!
In high school, Matt hopped right into a very historic and prestigious marching band that has won tons of competitions since the 1970s and continues to win them now.
“It was at that school where I met my mentor and band director Richard Purvis,” Matt says. Mr. Purvis was such a great teacher that in everything we did he made sure we did it well. He pushed us so much further than we realized we could go.”
Things started getting really serious for Matt after high school. Already playing baritone sax in high school, Matt bought his first tenor saxophone with graduation money and started prepping cover songs to start playing gigs in the local area.
“When I was ready to start gigging, I started finding several places that needed live music. I got several gigs over the next three years spanning from restaurants, to private events and weddings.”
After releasing several singles locally, Matt decided to get serious with his music on a national stage. He started to work in Nashville with engineer/producer Steve Dady and the amazing session players in Music City. He also began work with jazz label Creative Soul Jazz and longtime jazz producer Eric Copeland.
“This new music is going to be great! I have had a blast recording them in Nashville. And cannot wait to see everyone’s reaction to them. I hope that these songs touch as many lives as possible, like it did mine. I am truly blessed to have a great team working to write and produce these songs!”