Scotty Barnhart is an internationally acclaimed Jazz trumpeter, composer, arranger, educator, author, and is the Director of The Legendary Count Basie Orchestra. A featured trumpet soloist with the orchestra for over twenty years, he's a two-time Grammy Award winner, appears on three critically acclaimed recordings with pianist Marcus Roberts, and over fifteen others with artists as diverse as Tony Bennett, Diana Krall, Ray Charles, and Tito Puente. Acknowledged as an authority on the history of Jazz trumpet, he has given two keynote lecture-demonstrations at The International Trumpet Guild Conference and continues to give lectures and seminars at universities in South America, Japan, China, Europe, South Africa, and all across the United States. Hal Leonard published his groundbreaking book, The World of Jazz Trumpet – A Comprehensive History and Practical Philosophy worldwide in December 2005 to rave reviews.
As Professor of Jazz Trumpet at Florida State University since 2003, two of Scotty’s former students won First place in the National Jazz Trumpet Competition. He was also trumpeter for the Marcus Roberts Quintet in the late 80s and early 90s and garnered critical acclaim for his playing and sound of which The New York Times wrote: “Barnhart bears watching…laid out assured melodic lines in a singing, silvery tone.” He has also performed or recorded with Frank Sinatra, Wynton Marsalis, Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, The Duke Ellington Orchestra, Ray Brown, Take 6, Lena Horne, Max Roach, Nat Adderley, Aretha Franklin, Lalo Schifrin, Natalie Cole, Jane Monheit, Jon Hendricks, Hank Jones, Freddie Hubbard, Clark Terry, Nancy Wilson, George Benson, and Barbara Streisand among others. Additionally, Scotty has been featured in the Asian Wall Street Journal, performed at The Academy Awards, and is in demand as a soloist and lecturer on jazz history.
In April of 2008, Unity Music signed Scotty to his first recording contract as a leader and released his long anticipated debut CD, Say It Plain, to critical acclaim on May 19, 2009. Of Say It Plain, Bill Cosby states “Scotty Barnhart’s soulful work combines a mastery of tradition with vibrant originality. I love it!” An unprecedented lineup of musicians appearing with Scotty on his solo recording are Wynton Marsalis, Clark Terry, Ellis Marsalis, Marcus Roberts, Herlin Riley, Todd Williams, Leon Anderson, Jr., Bill Peterson, and Rodney Jordan. It reached #3 on the Jazz Charts.
A graduate of Florida A&M University with a degree in Music Education, he is profiled in the book Trumpet Kings, which places him with the most important Jazz trumpeters in history, from Louis Armstrong to Miles Davis and others.