Bass Clarinet Jazz Innovator: Todd Marcus on Art, Creativity, and Community

Todd Marcus is a talented jazz artist known for his innovative use of the bass clarinet. He is one of the few artists worldwide to focus on the bass clarinet as his main instrument in modern jazz with small and large ensembles.

Todd discusses his early interests, influences, and creative process. He shares how he taught himself jazz theory and harmony through listening to records and transcribing solos. Todd also talks about the challenges of being a musician in the current jazz scene and the importance of capturing and preserving the history and culture of jazz.

In this episode, we explore:

  • Todd Marcus's self-taught journey through the intricate world of jazz theory and harmony, uncovering how his passion for music propelled him to learn from records and transcribe solos.
  • The musical influences that have shaped Todd Marcus's unique style, immersing ourselves in the world of jazz legends like Eric Dolphy, John Coltrane, and Chick Corea, while also recognizing the profound impact of bass clarinetists Benny Maupin and Don Byron.
  • A sonic adventure, tracing the evolution of Todd Marcus's innovative fusion of jazz and Middle Eastern musical traditions, and how his compositions weave together these diverse sounds to create a harmonious tapestry.
  • Baltimore's thriving jazz scene, exploring the wealth of talent that graces the city's musical landscape, while also addressing the challenges that musicians like Todd Marcus face in navigating the quest for venues and performance opportunities.
  • The significance of oral history and cultural preservation in the realm of jazz as Todd Marcus sheds light on his mission to safeguard the heritage and essence of this genre through engaging conversations and interviews with fellow musicians, giving us insights into the vital role of storytelling in the world of jazz.

🎺🎢 Join us as we dive into the world of jazz with bass clarinet innovator Tod Marcus. His unique approach to the instrument and fusion of Middle Eastern sounds will leave you mesmerized. Tune in to The Truth in This Art podcast now! 

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This program is supported (in part) by a grant from the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation.

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Original music by Daniel Alexis Music with additional music from Chipzard.

Episode illustration by Alley Kid Art.

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"The Truth In This Art," hosted by Rob Lee, is a podcast that explores the essence of creativity and its community impact, amplifying artists' voices and their profound stories.

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Rob Lee
Rob Lee
The Truth In This Art is an interview series featuring artists, entrepreneurs and tastemakers in & around Baltimore.
Bass Clarinet Jazz Innovator: Todd Marcus on Art, Creativity, and Community
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