“Mark Zaleski never figured his musical itinerary would include backing everyone from Joan Rivers to Jethro Tull.  But that’s exactly the kind of versatility that makes the Mark Zaleski Band one of the more compelling jazz-rock fusion groups on the contemporary scene.”

The Patriot Ledger

ABOUT

Internationally touring musician, Mark Zaleski, has distinguished himself as a uniquely dynamic soloist, mulit-instrumentalist, and band leader. He has performed with a diverse group of notable artists including Dave Brubeck, Christian McBride, Ian Anderson, Connie Francis, Mahmoud Ahmed, Rakalam Bob Moses, the Either/Orchestra, Jason Palmer, and Matt Savage.

Growing up in the small town of Boylston, MA, Zaleski was influenced by the musical tastes of his friends, family, and teachers.  His parents were fans of rock and pop music from the 1960’s and 1970’s like The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, The Temptations and Stevie Wonder.  His friends were fans of punk and metal bands of the 1990’s like Nirvana, Metallica, and Pearl Jam.  His brother, Glenn Zaleski, and his music teachers listened to jazz artists such as Dave Brubeck, Ray Brown, Oscar Peterson, Cannonball Adderley, and John Coltrane.

His unique approach to jazz led him to become the first alto saxophonist selected to the prestigious Dave Brubeck Institute Fellowship Program in Stockton, CA in 2003. Zaleski spent those two year performing with his virtuostic peers and learning from established pros such as Bobby Watson, Ndugu Chancler, Conrad Herwig, Eric Harland, Greg Tardy, Rufus Reid, Robin Eubanks, and Mic Gillette. Upon completion of the Brubeck Institute, Mark continued his studies at The New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, MA. It was at the New England Conservatory that he was able to study with some of the most influential teachers of his life, Charlie Banacos and Jerry Bergonzi.

While at The New England Conservatory, Zaleski began to delve deeply into composition.  His compositional style derives itself from the music he grew up listening to while still drawing from his training as a jazz musician.  While the band has no vocalist, Zaleski takes on the lead voice channeling a combination of his saxophone heroes and inspirational vocalists like Stevie Wonder, Robert Plant, Michael Jackson, and Donny Hathaway.  This sound proved to be a unique voice in music, and started touring at clubs, colleges, and festivals around the country.  Notable appearances have been at Small’s in New York City, Ryles in Boston, Egan’s in Seattle, Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and Vitello in Los Angeles.

The personal relationships within the ensemble is one of the most important and unique aspects of the Mark Zaleski Band. Beginning at the ages of 10 and 8 years old, Mark and his brother, Glenn Zaleski, have been playing music and creatively callaborating together for the past twenty years! Since meeting at The New England Conservatory, Zaleski and tenor saxophonist Jon Bean have played together as a saxophone duo for 10 years and work together as if one mind is manipulating both of their musical voices. These are only two examples of how the interpersonal relationships within the band play a major role in creating its sound.

Additionally, Zaleski is active in many musical projects including the Omar Thomas Large Ensemble, The Brighton Beat, John Allmark Jazz Orchestra and the Either/Orchestra. He also is on faculty at the Berklee College of Music and Longy School of Music at Bard College.

MZB is what Mark describes as his “passion project.” It is an ever evolving musical concept and continues to explore the various creative gifts of it’s ensemble. Zaleski hopes to live up to a claim the Patriot Ledger once made of his band; “no one will ever accuse the Mark Zaleski Band of being boring.”

DISCOGRAPHY

Mixed Messages

Mixed Messages

Sarah Borges and Girls, Guns, and Glory

tenor saxophone

whatsnext?

whatsnext?

Mehmet Ali Sanlikol

alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, clarinet, flute

Garden of Rainbows

Garden of Rainbows

Lowman

tenor saxophone

We Will Know

We Will Know

Omar Thomas Large Ensemble

alto saxophone, soprano saxophone

Superhero Dance Party

Super Hero Dance Party

Brian Thomas/Alex Lee-Clark Big Band

alto saxophone

Stevens

Stevens’ Swingin’ Session

Beantown Swing Orchestra

alto saxophone, lead alto saxophone, clarinet

Winters Relative

Winters Relative

Dennison Blackett

guest soloist: alto and soprano saxophone

I Am

I Am

Omar Thomas Large Ensemble

lead alto saxophone, soprano saxophone solist

celebration

A Bigger Celebration

Matt Savage

alto and soprano saxophone

Shapes of Nature

Shapes of Nature

George Lernis Quartet

double bass

Scott Boni Trio

Scott Boni Trio

Scott Boni Trio

double bass

Live at the Beanrunner

Live at the Beanrunner

Brighton Beat

alto, soprano and baritone saxophone

Meridian 71

Meridian 71

Giueseppe Paradiso

alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, clarinet, flute

Trolley Songs

Trolley Songs

Beantown Swing Orchestra

lead alto saxophone, clarinet

A Beantown Christmas

A Beantown Christmas

Beantown Swing Orchestra

lead alto saxophone, clarinet

Low Contrast

Low Contrast

The Olsen/Pingrey Quartet

double bass

Brighton Beat

Brighton Beat

Brighton Beat

alto and baritone saxophone

Duet Suite

Duet Suite

Mark and Glenn Zaleski

alto and soprano saxophone, clarinet

Mark Zaleski Band

Mark Zaleski Band

Mark Zaleski Band

alto saxophone, soprano saxophone

Rocco and the Stompers

Rocco and the Stompers

Rocco and the Stompers

alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, clarinet

Olanchito

Olanchito

Charles Licata

tenor saxophone

Adding Fuel to the Fire

Adding Fuel to the Fire

Nate Aronow Nextet

alto and tenor saxophone