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Ken Vandermark is a Chicago based saxophone and clarinet player.
Born September 22, 1964 in Rhode Island he was raised in Boston and relocated to Chicago in 1989.
It was in 1992 his free jazz ensemble the Vandermark Quartet (also featuring violinist/guitarist Daniel Scanlan, bassist Kent Kessler, and percussionist Michael Zerang) landed a weekly gig at the local HotHouse club which brought him to fame in the Chicago scene.

By 1995, Vandermark was involved in a series of projects including the NRG Ensemble, the Flying Luttenbachers, Caffeine, Cinghiale, Signal to Noise Unit, the Steel Wool Trio, Witches & Devils, Barrage Double Trio, and the Crown Royals.

In 1997 he cut back to focus his energies into the Vandermark 5 (founded in 1996 with saxophonist Mars Williams, trombonist Jeb Bishop, bassist Kent Kessler and drummer Tim Mulvenna), the DKV Trio (with Kessler and percussionist Hamid Drake), and Steam (again with Kessler, Mulvenna, and pianist Jim Baker).

Renowned for a sound embracing bop, free-jazz and R&B, Vandermark also collaborated with visiting musicians including German reedist Peter Brotzmann, French bassist Joelle Leandre, and Swedish saxophonist Mats Gustafsson.

In 1999 he won a MacArthur Foundation Genius grant (the first jazz musician to win the award.

For a comprehensive discography see: http://tisue.net/vandermark/

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