Antoine Knight, a saxophonist born and raised in Pensacola, brought his jazz sound back home in a performance last Sunday at Sheila’s located on 2610 West Cervantes. Knight says that though he has experienced the highs of entertaining large audiences, he still feels a special joy playing his horn for the home crowd.
“There’s nothing like playing at home,” he said. “It’s a great gratification to play for the hometown folk.”
Knight, who has been playing the saxophone since the age of 11, says he continues to hone his skills. As a lover of music, Knight emphasized how he focuses on mastering his craft and distributing his music as an independent artist.
“Recently, I signed with Pandora radio. As an independent artist you really have to focus on your artistry to really appear on the radar in the industry,” Knight said.
As a vetted jazz musician, Knight lamented on the current decline of the jazz genre from yesteryear.
“The jazz scene is really falling,” he said. “Jazz is an art form that people really don’t appreciate now. They don’t appreciate the artistry, they don’t appreciate the musicianship … people just do not appreciate jazz and appreciate the horn in general.”
Knight also recognized the genre’s gradual disappearance from mainstream radio.
“How many jazz stations do you have in Pensacola – none,” he said. “How many jazz spots do people have to go to in Pensacola – none.”
Knight will be back in Pensacola this Sunday to perform in an event where Roy Jones Jr. and Malcolm-Jamal Warner are also scheduled to make appearances.