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Horace Young

Horace Alexander Young is an American saxophonist and flute player. A native of Houston, Young started taking music lessons at eight years of age, initially on the piano but he subsequently took up the flute, saxophone and clarinet. He is an adept musician with various skills, including as a keyboardist, arranger, musical director, percussionist, producer, songwriter, woodwind instrumentalist, vocalist, author and music journalist.


Young earned his BM in Music from Texas Southern University (Houston, Texas) in 1978 and later pursued a MA in Music at Washington State University (Pullman, Washington), which he completed in 1983. Prior to his attendance at Washington State, he studied for two years at The Shepherd School of Music/Rice University (Houston, Texas), with a focus in Flute Performance and Composition.

After more than three decades of active touring and recording, Young is now primarily a college professor/ music teacher, having taught music courses at various institutions, including the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (Houston, TX), Sonoma State University, Mason Gross School of Music at Rutgers University, Douglas MacArthur High School (Houston, Texas), and Houston Community College, Central Campus. He was formerly an Associate Professor at Washington State University, where his teaching focus was in Jazz Studies and Music Business. He currently directs the Texas Southern University Jazz Experience Big Band and The Joe Sample Jazz Orchestra. Young is Chair of the Contemporary Music Program at Santa Fe University of Art and Design.

Young has also done private tutoring in music in various U.S. cities and Canada including Houston (Texas), Pullman (Washington), Santa Rosa, Novato and Oakland (California), Nanaimo (British Columbia) and Englewood (New Jersey). In 1997 he developed his own record label (Design Records), which he operated until 2008, after which his recordings were released on the Pacific Coast Jazz label. Young has performed for various events throughout the world, including at major jazz festivals in Hamburg, Berlin, Munich and Leverkusen (Germany), London, Glasgow, New York, Detroit, Chicago, Houston and Seattle.

Young has performed alongside acts such as B.B. King, Bill Withers, Freddy Fender, Jonathan Butler, The Manhattans, McCoy Tyner, Nancy Wilson, Norman Brown, Regina Belle, Sam Hopkins and Toots Thielemans. Young has performed on recordings for several musicians, among them Bubbha Thomas, Freddy Fender, B.B. King, Madd Hatta, Abdullah Ibrahim, Regina Belle, Mark Ledford, Texas Johnny Brown and Youssou N'Dour.