Marty Olivas, a recording and touring artist with over 25 years’ experience, is a native of El Paso, Texas. After graduating from Burges High School in 1985, he went on to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the University of Texas at El Paso and a Master’s degree in Trumpet Performance from New Mexico State University.
As an educator, Marty has worked in El Paso for the Ysleta ISD for 18 years in which for six years he taught at Bel Air High School as the Assistant Band Director and Director of Jazz Studies. Currently, Marty is a Fine Arts Instructional Specialist with the Ysleta ISD Fine Arts Department.
In addition, Mr. Olivas is also a Yamaha Performing Artist and frequently serves as a clinician and adjudicator throughout the United States. Mr. Olivas is the Artistic Director and co-founder of the El Paso Youth Jazz Ensemble that is going into their sixth season performing at jazz festivals and clubs throughout the El Paso area. This group consists of 21 high school students who audition for this group. Also known as EPYJE, this opportunity was created to further their education in jazz studies throughout their high school career.
As a performer, Mr. Olivas joined jazz-fusion group Billy Townes and Modern Sessions in 1991. In 1992 he assembled El Paso’s premier mainstream jazz quintet, Marty Olivas and Jazz Q, which released their first CD, Jazz at the Dome, in 1999. For the past 10 years Marty has led the 15-piece big band The Eklektic Jazz Group; each member of this group (as is the case with almost all of his performing groups) is a certified music educator and takes great interest in keeping the American art form of jazz alive by educating young people through master classes, clinics and performances.
In 2005 Marty Olivas and Shade Records released his CD Being Gemini, which can be purchased through Barnes and Noble, Olivas Music Center in El Paso, TX, or online at shaderecords.com. His most recent project with his latest group CASE CLOSED has recently released a new CD entitled Agree To Disagree. This project includes Ruben Gutierrez on piano, Erik Unsworth on bass, Ricky Malichi on drums, with special appearances by Brad Leali on saxophone and Arath Corral on guitar.