It may sound cliche, but Michael Burton was made for making music. Jackson native Michael Burton’s musical gift was trained from an early age and honed through years of commitment. His mother was a singer with the Mississippi Mass Choir and his father a tenor saxophonist. In a home filled with music, he developed an affinity for soul and jazz.
As a student in Jackson Public Schools, Burton took part in music programs offered at JPS’s Academic and Performing Arts Complex (known as Power APAC) and after graduating from Murrah High School in 1996 he embarked on a journey to build on this musical legacy. Since completing both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Jazz Studies — under the tutelage of David Baker at Indiana University — Burton’s legacy and musical career has flourished.
He has toured with Mary J. Blige, Jill Scott, and Anita Baker as well as with New Edition, Johnta Austin, soul artist PJ Morton, and blues singer Willie Clayton. Burton has played keys and sax for the Tyler Perry stage productions Madea Goes To Jail, What’s Done In The Dark, Why Did I Get Married, Laugh To Keep From Crying and Madea’s Big Happy Family. In 2009, Burton appeared in the much talked about Perry film I Can Do Bad All By Myself. Before that he also made appearances in The Family That Preys and Madea’s Family Reunion.
Burton has recorded with a long list of jazz, soul, rhythm and blues, gospel, and hip/hop artists including Polow Da Don, Ann Nesby, Jennifer Holliday, PJ Morton, Avery Sunshine, Marcus Johnson, The Mississippi Mass Choir, and many others. His soulful saxophone can also be heard on the Grammy Nominated “Love Has Finally Come At Last,” by Calvin Richardson.
As if his performance credits weren’t prolific enough, Burton’s television and studio production work extends the list. He has appeared on The Tonight Show, Ellen, Jimmy Kimmel, TV One, BET Jazz, and performed alongside pianist Bobby Lyle on the popular show Studio Jams. Michael frequently appears on the Mo’nique show as a member of the house band (Big Jim’s Penthouse Playas). Burton has also written and/or produced songs for Alex Bugnon, Terrell Carter, Christian Keyes, Chandra Currelley, and Melvin Miller.
Noe he can show his talent on his solo album Soulful, which is just arrived at CDBaby.