North Central College - Naperville, IL

Smooth jazz saxophonist Richard Elliot performs April 2

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Jan. 29, 2011—Saxophonist Richard Elliot, named Best Wind Player at the 2010 American Smooth Jazz Awards, performs April 2 in North Central College’s acoustically stunning Wentz Concert Hall.

With a best-selling discography of more than 15 recordings and thousands of live performances since his 1986 debut, Elliot claims one of the most loyal fan bases in contemporary urban jazz. He has had six albums reach No. 1 on Billboard’s new adult contemporary chart.

Elliot’s performance will begin at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 2, in North Central College’s Wentz Concert Hall at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville. Tickets are $40 and $30; call the North Central College Box Office at 630-637-SHOW (7469) or visit

Elliot is equally at home in smooth jazz as well as classic R&B and most rock ‘n’ roll. His most recent album “Rock Steady” brings him back to his R&B beginnings to create an overall vibe that has a decidedly retro feel while also incorporating more contemporary flavors.

“What I’m doing now, enjoying this upward trend in my career, is seriously the most fun I have ever had,” Elliot says. 

Elliot was born in Scotland and raised in Los Angeles. He found his musical voice on tenor sax as a teenager and landed his first professional gig touring with Natalie Cole and The Pointer Sisters while he was still in high school. He played with the adventurous fusion band Kittyhawk and recorded with his Motown heroes Smokey Robinson, The Four Tops and The Temptations.

He later performed with Melissa Manchester and Yellowjackets, which found him hooking up for the first time with Ricky Lawson, founding drummer of the legendary fusion band Tower of Power. Elliot was still on the road with Tower of Power when he released his debut album “Trolltown” in 1986. Its success gave him confidence to launch his solo career, which took off with his cover of “When a Man Loves a Woman.” Visit to learn more about the artist.

North Central College’s 2010-2011 Sesquicentennial Fine & Performing Arts Season is supported by a generous grant from the Illinois Arts Council. USG Corporation and Navistar, Inc. are underwriting sponsors.

This performance is one of many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. North Central offers a variety of venues accommodating a rich range of local and world-class events, performances and space needs for the public. For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit or call 630-637-SHOW (7469).