Max Schwartz is a musician, composer, and teacher originally from Boston (now based in Needham, MA) and is highly-acclaimed as both a bluegrass and jazz musician. He has been called “an acoustic master” by the Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, has won Downbeat Awards for both performance and composition, is a two-time member of the GRAMMY® Jazz Combo, and was the winner of the 2019 Rockygrass Banjo Competition.
He first appeared with Grammy Award-winning bluegrass artist Laurie Lewis and the Right Hands at age 16, and toured with Lewis for three years throughout the country. Some highlights of their time together include the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco, Rockygrass Bluegrass Festival in Colorado, a live taping of NPR music broadcast “Mountain Stage” in Elkins, West Virginia, and the IBMA Hall of Fame Induction of Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerrard in Raleigh, North Carolina. Additionally, he has played in groups with Keith Little, Bill Evans, Nate Lee, Kenny Smith, Tatiana Hargreaves, Tashina Clarridge, Carolyn Kendrick, Jake Howard, Chad Manning and Molly Tuttle, and recently he played bass on John Reischman’s new recordings of “Suzanne’s Journey” and “Salt Spring.”
Additionally, Max has appeared throughout the United States with The Page Turners, an award-winning acoustic music duo based in Austin, TX, Simon Lunche, a rising pop-rock artist from Berkeley, CA, and with the SFJAZZ High School All-Stars Orchestra (member in 2015 and 2016) and Combo (2016). He also was chosen to play bass in the 2015 and 2016 GRAMMY® Jazz Combos and was the only common member between those two iterations of the group.
As a jazz bassist, Max has performed at the Grammy Awards, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and the Monterey Jazz Festival. Max has performed with the likes of John Daversa, Hubert Lawes, Melissa Aldana, Shelly Berg, Ravi Coltrane, and Terri Lyne Carrington. He is a seasoned international touring sideman, with trips to France, Switzerland, Italy, Cuba, and Suriname, as well as Japan in August of 2016 with the Next Generation Jazz Orchestra, a national jazz ensemble that is assembled each year by the Monterey Jazz Festival.
Max earned his BM and MM degrees from the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. As an undergrad, he was the bassist in the Stamps Jazz Quintet, a group of undergraduate jazz musicians that is generously funded by the Stamps Family Charitable Foundation. Afterward, he became the Jazz Bass Fellow of the Henry Mancini Institute and served as a teaching assistant to the jazz bass studio professor, Dr. Charles Bergeron.
February 2022: The Era – Marcello Carelli (upright bass)
January 2022: “The Great Transition” (Single) – Almost June (banjo)
November 2021: Gratitude (Live Session EP) – Ryan Kerwin (upright bass, mixing)
August 2021: New Time and Old Acoustic – John Reischman (upright bass on tracks 1 and 9)
April 2021: Ragged Road – Boston Ravine (banjo on tracks 2, 8, 11)
March 2021: Son of the Hills – Ben Greenberg (banjo and upright bass)
March 2021: The Bohemian (EP) – Ben Thomas Taylor (horn tracking and editing, electric bass)
January 2021: Joey Curreri Quintet (EP) – Recording Engineer
January 2021: “Making Room” (Single) – Kelly Schenk (upright bass)
October 2020: “Amy” (Single) – Kelly Schenk (banjo)
February 2020: Tear Things Apart (EP) – Carolyn Kendrick (upright and electric bass)
July 2020: More Songs (EP) – Alan Hsiao (upright and electric bass)
August 2019: “Albuquerque” (Single) – Mayberry (with Abbi Berry) – Co-arranger, Production, Background Vox, Banjo, Electric Bass, Lapsteel
October 2018: “Wilson River Highway” (Single) – Kelly Schenk (upright bass and banjo)
September 2018: “Melatonin” (Single) – Carter Vail (banjo)
April 2018: Blue Paint – The Stamps Jazz Quintet (class of 2021)
August 2017: The Page Turners (EP) – The Page Turners (upright bass)
May 2017: Where the Mountains Meet the Sea – The Dim Lights (Recording Engineer)
2016: Grammy Jazz 24 – Grammy Jazz Combo (upright and electric bass, composer, arranger)
2016: SFJAZZ High School All-Stars Big Band and Combo – 2015-16 (upright bass, electric bass, composer, arranger)
2015: Grammy Jazz 23 – Grammy Jazz Combo (upright and electric bass, arranger)
2015: SFJAZZ High School All-Stars Big Band – 2014-15 (upright bass, electric bass, composer, arranger)
May 2013: Tangled Roots – Oak Grove Family Bluegrass Band
2011: Oak Grove – a Family Bluegrass Band (self titled album)
2010: OMGG – Obviously Minor Guys and a Girl (composer, bass, lead/harmony vocals, banjo)