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Miles Leon holding his saxophone

From Band Geek to Sax Superstar: The Unconventional Journey of Miles Leon!

Meet the one and only Miles Leon, your friendly neighborhood saxophonist! Originally hailing from the vibrant city of Atlanta, Georgia, Miles embarked on a musical journey that started with the sweet sounds of jazz and never looked back.

Picture this: Miles as a young musician, finding his groove at the Tri-Cities High School's visual and performing arts academy in the heart of Atlanta. There, he studied privately under jazz legend Joseph Jennings, all while embracing his inner band geek as a member of the school's marching band. Starting as a chubby band enthusiast, he soon found himself shedding both weight and musical notes on his way to saxophone stardom.

Fast forward to his college years, where Miles traded Southern hospitality for the scenic landscapes of Upstate New York. Landing at Bard College on a full scholarship, he blossomed into a triple-threat: a talented player, a creative composer, and an all-around music enthusiast. You name it, he could play it – tenor saxophone, flute, clarinet – you name it! His time at Bard wasn't just a formative experience; it was more like a full-on college cliché. While others were out partying on Saturday nights, Miles could be found nerding out, diving into music theory like it was the latest blockbuster. Under the mentorship of the remarkable Erica Lindsay, Miles's composing talent emerged like a jazz improvisation. He arranged tunes and conducted them for Bard's Contemporary Jazz Ensemble, all while sharing his wisdom with budding grade-school musicians at Bard's Jazz Prep program. Teaching and playing were like his favorite jazz chords, inseparable and harmonious.
His jazz journey didn't stop there; he set sail for a master's degree in jazz performance at William Paterson University. Along the way, he rubbed shoulders with the likes of Dayna Stephens and Bill Charlap – no big deal, right? Miles was all about sharing the joy of jazz, even though his bank account was more in sync with the rhythm of a broken drumstick than the sound of success. While others were chasing corporate dreams, Miles proudly sported the unusual occupation of a 'professional musician,' where 'professional' sometimes meant playing for applause and ramen noodles. He considered grad school a bit like his 'promotion' in the world of jazz, from broke artist to slightly-less-broke artist.

Following grad school, Miles became the jazz ensemble director at an elite boarding school in Massachusetts, or as he lovingly referred to it, 'The Epicenter of Epic Unprofitable Musical Adventures.' He didn't just teach students the art of big band playing; he doubled down on imparting the cultural and historical significance of the music they played, because why not make things even more complicated, right? His leadership wasn't confined to the jazz band; it extended to directing the school's Chapel Chorus, an a cappella girls group, steel drum ensemble, and even the beginners' band, where every note sounded like it had yet to find its true purpose in life. Miles also had the honor of designing and teaching a music appreciation curriculum to 9th graders, molding young minds into connoisseurs of music while secretly questioning his life choices.
After a year of teaching, Miles made a bold decision. He realized that while he could teach music, the calling of performing on the saxophone was practically shouting in his ear. So, he made a change and stepped onto the Celebrity Equinox cruise ship to join the Equinox Orchestra. As a member of the orchestra, he often found himself playing music behind the headliners, essentially putting himself in the background. Yet, as he watched their show-stopping performances from the shadows, a thought started to take center stage in his mind: 'I can have my own show too'
Today, Miles graces major cruise lines as a headliner with his remarkable shows: "Rock with You: A Tribute to the King of Pop" and "Funk Your Soul: A Tribute Celebrating Funk and Soul Artists." It's a pretty fancy way of saying that he fled the world of lesson plans and tests for a stage where the only pop quizzes involve audience applause. His journey has landed him in the warm and welcoming city of Providence, Rhode Island, where he brings his soulful saxophone melodies to weddings, local venues, and special events.
Whether you catch him on land or at sea, Miles is sure to touch your heart and leave you with a tune in your step.
Join Miles on this musical journey, and let's spread some joy together, one sax note at a time!




Don Casino




Theresa Ferner


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