Steve Coleman is an American saxophone player, spontaneous composer, composer and band leader. His music and concepts have been a heavy influence on contemporary jazz.
Born on 20 September 1956 in Chicago, Illinois, Coleman moved to New York in 1978 and has lived in the NY area since that time. Although he has led several groups over the years, his main group Steve Coleman and Five Elements began in 1981 and is still active today. Others have included M-Base Collective, Steve Coleman and Metrics, Strata Institute, and Steve Coleman and the Council of Balance, and Steve coleman and the Mystic Rhythm Society.
He was one of the founders of the so-called M-Base movement, has lead several groups, and has recorded extensively. Initially influenced by saxophonists Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, Chicago legend Von Freeman and Bunky Green, Coleman has performed and recorded with Thad Jones, Sam Rivers, drummer Doug Hammond, Cecil Taylor, Abbey Lincoln and Dave Holland. He has incorporated many elements from folkloric music from the African Diaspora fused with musical ideas influenced by ancient metaphysical concepts. He has stated that his main concern is the use of music as a language of sonic symbols used to express the nature of man's existence.