Now a grammy award winning sideman (for work on Beyoncé’s “Love on Top”), Josiah Woodson picked up trumpet at the age of 12. As a product of the Oaktown Jazz Workshop he refined his craft under the private instruction of his late mentor, Khalil Shaheed. Since leaving the Bay Area, Woodson has regularly returned to teach and perform, including an exposition of an original piece for orchestra entitled “The Third Day,” with conductor Michael Morgan and the Oakland East Bay Symphony.
Woodson obtained his Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Ohio, where he studied under Marcus Belgrave. There, he was a member of several ensembles, most notably the Oberlin Jazz Septet. Moving to Boston to receive a Master of Music degree (with academic honors) from the New England Conservatory of Music, Woodson was among students selected to perform at the Panama Jazz Festival with Danilo Perez, sharing the stage with David Sanchez, Victor Paz, and Kurt Rosenwinkel. The Boston Globe heralded his playing as “outstanding!”
While in Boston, where he toured with Lamine Toure and Group Saloum playing trumpet, flute, and guitar, Woodson became an integral member of “The Makanda Project” with Oliver Lake, Yoron Isreal and John Lockwood, playing trumpet and flute. He continued to perform with the Boston-based ensemble while stationed in New York. In New York City, Josiah played trumpet, flute, and guitar in several bands including Out to Lunch, The People’s Champs and The SuperPower Horns, with whom he wrote and recorded material for seven tracks on the award-winning singer Beyonce’s latest album, 4.
Woodson has had the honor of collaborating and/or sharing the stage with such notable artists and musicians as, Branford Marsalis, Billy Hart, Gary Bartz, David Sanchez, Danilo Perez, Ronnie Burrage, John Lockwood, Dave Holland, Ben Williams, Mulgrew Miller, Marcus Belgrave, Clarence Clemons, Beyoncé Knowles, Blitz the Ambassador, Mos Def, Winard Harper, Steve Turre, Najee and many more.