Joshua Redman is one of the most acclaimed and charismatic jazz artists to have emerged in the decade of the 1990s. Born in Berkley, California, he is the son of legendary saxophonist Dewey Redman and dancer Renee Shedroff and an alumnus of the jazz studies program at Berkley High School. After graduating from Harvard College, Redman was accepted by Yale Law School in 1991, but postponed his entrance for one year to satisfy a growing desire to pursue music. Four months later, Redman's instincts were validated when he was named the winner of the Thelonious Monk International Saxophone Competition by a panel of judges comprised of Jimmy Heath, Branford Marsalis, Frank Wess, the late Benny Carter and the late Jackie McClean.
Now fully committed to a career in the arts, Redman was quickly signed by Warner Bros. Records and issued his first, self-titled album in 1993, where he was featured on tenor saxophone. That same year saw the release of Wish, where Redman was joined by an all-star supporting cast of Pat Metheny, Charlie Haden and the late Billy Higgins. His next recording, MoodSwing, introduced his first permanent band, which included three other young artists who have gone on to make their mark in the jazz world: pianist Brad Mehldau, bassist Christian McBride and drummer Brian Blade. Over a series of celebrated recordings including Spirit of the Moment/Live at the Village Vanguard, Freedom in the Groove and Timeless Tales (for Changing Times), Redman established himself as one of the music's most consistent and successful bandleaders, and added soprano and alto saxophones to his instrumental arsenal. His second acclaimed quartet, featuring pianist Aaron Goldberg, bassist Reuben Rogers and drummer Gregory Hutchinson, made its debut on Redman's 2000 album Beyond, and is also featured performing the saxophonist's first extended composition on the 2001 disc Passage of Time.
A year later, Redman channeled his jazz sensibilities through electric instrumentation and formed a new trio, the Joshua Redman Elastic Band, with keyboard player Sam Yahel and drummer Brian Blade, building on an ongoing collaboration with Yahel. The trio debuted on the 2003 release, Elastic, which was met with widespread critical and popular acclaim, and released a second recording the same year under the moniker Yaya3. In a subsequent Elastic Band recording, Momentum, released in 2005 to inaugurate his affiliation with Nonesuch Records, Redman alternated Blade on drums with Jeff Ballard, and the recording also featured an array of guest artists as Redman continued his exploration into the arena of electric jazz.
In addition to his own projects, Redman has been heard with an array of musicians including Ray Brown, Dave Brubeck, Chick Corea, Lionel Hampton, Roy Haynes, Milt Jackson, Elvin Jones, Quincy Jones, Joe Lovano, Marcus Miller, Paul Motian, Dianne Reeves, McCoy Tyner and Cedar Walton. He provided the music for the film Vanya on 42nd Street and is both seen and heard in the Robert Altman film Kansas City. Redman will release a new Nonesuch album in January 2009 entitled Compass, with a newly-formed double trio of Brian Blade and Larry Grenadier on drums, and Gregory Hutchinson and Reuben Rogers on bass.