Los Angeles-based saxophonist and woodwind doubler Brian Scanlon has made his mark in studios, concert venues, and clubs all over the globe. As an in-demand studio musician, Brian has appeared on a multitude of film soundtracks, such as La La Land, The Secret Life of Pets, Sideways, Monsters, Inc., and Analyze This. He has also played on the scores of several television shows, including The Simpsons, Family Guy, American Dad, Mad Men, and Two and a Half Men and on records with notable artists such as Bob Dylan, Seth McFarlane, Randy Newman, Bette Midler, Patti Austin, and Rosemary Clooney.
The capacity for which Brian is best known is for his work as the first tenor saxophonist for the Grammy award-winning Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band. He can be heard on the title track of their critically acclaimed album Life in the Bubble, which won a Grammy in 2014 for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album, and on the band’s jazz-rock hit “The Jazz Police” from their album XXL, both as a featured soloist.
As a live performer, Brian has played with a number of musical artists, such as Alicia Keys, Tony Bennett, Dizzy Gillespie, Brad Mehldau, Michael Bublé, Neil Diamond, Take 6, Barry Manilow, Dianne Reeves, John Williams, Josh Groban, Adina Menzel, Kristen Chenoweth, and others. Additionally, Brian has appeared as a soloist and extra musician with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, and Long Beach Symphony. From 1988 to 1992, Brian performed with the Tonight Show Band. After host Johnny Carson retired from the show, Brian continued to tour with the Tonight Show Band leader, trumpeter Doc Severinsen. Brian has also toured with singers Ben Vereen, Natalie Cole, Maureen McGovern, and Suzanne Somers, as well as with the Buddy Rich Big Band and the Glenn Miller Orchestra.
In 2002, Brian began teaching saxophone and directing the jazz ensemble at Pepperdine University, before stepping down from the position in 2016.
Brian is a Vandoren Artist and an alum of the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, where he received a BM in Music Education (’81) and an MM in Jazz Studies and Contemporary Media (’83).