The University of the Arts
Artist's BiographyPhiladelphia-raised musician and composer Maxfield Gast has been widely recognized for his performance on the alto, tenor, soprano and baritone saxophones and EWI, as well as for his composition. In 2009 he began writing and performing the soundtrack for Louis CK\'s hit show Louie as part of the studio band, SweetPro. The show has gone on to be named the #1 television series of 2011 by Time Magazine and won 2 Emmy Awards in 2012. Gast and SweetPro also wrote and performed the music for CK\'s Emmy Award winning DVD release Live at Beacon Theater. The FX series is continuing into its 4th season.
Gast has released several solo albums, including Side By Side, Eat Your Beats, and Trio Innovations on the Militia Hill label. The eclectic grooves of Eat Your Beats met with a great deal of success, landing on college radio charts, National Public Radio, and was licensed by MTV for shows like Cribs and True Life. Gast has most recently released a single from the GLG Sessions on which he collaborated with Grammy Nominated song writer (of The Roots) Jeremy Grenhart and Philadelphia composer Tyler Lynch. The project features a soulful, sophisticated sound combining Gast\'s roots in pop, jazz, and rhythm and blues. He is currently working on a new solo album as well as collaborative works with a variety of artists including Grammy Award winning songwriter and performer Scot Sax of the band Wanderlust. He is also producing other local artists in the Philadelphia and New York area.
Gast studied with Terell Stafford and Dick Oatts at Temple University from which he earned a BA of Music. He first began playing at the age of ten and by 13, he was performing with the Rohm and Haas Scholarship Jazz Ensemble at Philadelphia\'s Settlement Music School. There he had the opportunity to learn from and perform with many jazz legends like Grover Washington Jr., Betty Carter, Christian McBride, and Kenny Barron. In high school Maxfield was a member of the Mid-Atlantic Grammy Band, Philadelphia All City Jazz Band, and the Mellon Bank Jazz Ensemble where he performed with band mates including Bilal, Derek Hodge, Rodney Green Jr., Jonathan Blake Jr. and Jaleel Shaw. At 15, Gast and his jazz trio Indigo Mood were featured nationally in Downbeat Magazine, and by 17, he had performed in New York\'s Carnegie Hall and Philadelphia\'s Academy of Music.
Maxfield is an accompanist at University of the Arts, where he performs and composes for classes in the School of Dance. In 2012, he joined the writing team at Yessian Music, based out of LA, Detroit, and New York. He has performed with many names in the industry including Reggie Watts, Doodlebug of the Digable Planets, Sharon Little, Namoi Shelton and the Gospel Queens, American Music Award winning band the Bomb Squad, Grammy Nominated Ryan Shaw, and rising star Dana Leong. Along with production and composition, Gast actively performs in and around New York and tours with a variety of acts including Brooklyn based band Wu Li, Keith DeStefano\'s Puzzlebox, and Philadelphia\'s rising pop group Work Drugs. In addition to performance, Gast is highly active in the field of education and has taught in multiple venues like the Philadelphia Cleff Club of Jazz, Temple University, and surrounding middle and high schools focusing on both private instruction and small and large ensemble playing.