Walton Arts Center is excited to announce that the world’s top-selling jazz instrumentalist and musical visionary, Chris Botti, will play Friday, Dec. 2 at 8 pm. Ticket prices start at $45 and can be purchased by calling our Box Office at 479.443.5600 or by visiting waltonartscenter.org. 

Trumpeter Chris Botti’s newest album, Impressions (2013) is the latest in a stellar parade of albums – starting with When I Fall In Love (2004) and continuing with To Love Again, Italia and the CD/DVD Chris Botti In Boston, which have firmly established him as the world’s top-selling jazz instrumentalist. Add to that a Grammy Award® for “Best Pop Instrumental Album” and four #1 albums on Billboard’s Jazz Albums listings.

Botti seemed destined to become a musician—and even to become the kind of musician he is today—almost from the very beginning. Born in Portland, Oregon, he was encouraged to pursue music by his mother, a concert pianist. He also had an early taste of the international world that would become his primary territory as a successful performing artist. His father, who is Italian, taught English and Italian languages, and took the family to live in Italy for several years when Botti was in the first grade. After attending Indiana University and studying with the highly regarded jazz educator David Baker, the great trumpet teacher Bill Adam, jazz trumpeter Woody Shaw and jazz saxophonist George Coleman, he moved to New York in the mid-‘80s.

His early career was spent crafting his skills in settings reaching from the Buddy Rich Big Band and Frank Sinatra to Natalie Cole and Joni Mitchell. Throughout the ‘90s and into the new century, Botti played extensively with Paul Simon and had an especially creative association with Sting. Those gigs – and those relationships – were powerful learning experiences. “Watching artists like Sting and Paul and Joni Mitchell,” explains Botti, “how they get in and out of songs, how they introduce people, whether they would do this or that sort of thing, what they would say about one of their players. All that was a huge asset for me. I wouldn’t be the performer I am today without that background.”

Now a major artist in his own right, performing worldwide and selling over three million albums, he has found a form of creative expression that begins in jazz and expands beyond the limits of any single genre. With Impressions and the albums that preceded it, Chris Botti has thoroughly established himself as one of the important, innovative figures of the contemporary music world.