Marshall Vente 

Project 9

Marshall Vente Octet
Tribute to Steely Dan
• MVP (Marshall Vente Pop)


Click the above buttons for more information about the various groups, ensembles and projects that Marshall Vente is involved with.

Billy Harper with Project 9


Project 9 at the Jazz Showcase in '97


Project 9 at Chicagofest '81 at Navy Pier


Project 9 at NEOCON at the Civic Opera House


Project 9 has two repetoires: an all original book for concerts, festivals and club dates; and , an all commercial book for parties, events and receptions ... party music too!

The following are sample soundbytes of Project 9 in action

"Bulls In The Night"

Real Audio Version

MP3 Version


Real Audio Version

MP3 Version

Celebrating its 20th year, three recordings, and hundreds of public appearances, Project 9 is the small band with a big punch and endless intensity.


Quotes, Reviews and Endorsements for Project 9

"The attentive and hard working Pro 9 attacks the charts and packs the air with excitement" 

-Frank-John Hadley, Downbeat


"Marshall Vente wears all his hats with equal flair: keyboardist, composer, arranger, even DJ (he hosts a Brazilian-music program on WDCB).  He also leads five ensembles on a regular basis, but this little big band, now in its 20th year, is the granddaddy.  Don't let the name fool you: it's really Vente's Project Nine Plus (originally a nonet, it's since grown to an even dozen), gussied up with premillennial nomenclature.  Lately the Project has been performing less and less frequently, due to the expense and logistics of booking a large group.  That's a shame, but it makes sightings of the ensemble all the more noteworthy.  Vente's compositions balance the deep hues of Thad Jones, the pastels of Gil Evans (with whom Vente studied), and the neon flares of fusion and pop.  He hasn't written any music especially for this occasion, but he could easily delve into the Project's brimming book to program pieces it hasn't played in ten or twelve years, and they'd sound brand new to most of us".

-Neal Tesser,  Chicago Reader "Critic's Choice 


"The mostly youngish crowd not only packed the house, but rocked and swayed to the music of Chicagoan Marshall Vente and his Project Nine band.  Even the spikiest, least danceable numbers held this audience rapt; clearly the performers and listeners were speaking the same language."

Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune Music Critic


"Pianist Marshall Vente's little big band, Project 9, incorporated reggae and soul to invigorating effect."

-Lloyd Sachs, Chicago Sun Times reviewing the '97 Chicago Jazz Festival


"Whether punching out rich swing harmonies or stripping down to an unusual instrumentation such as classical guitar angainst flutes, his arrangements breathe in a uniquely rewarding way.  Having fine tuned his rock music instincts as a student of the late Gil Evans, he is able to introduce Frank Dawson's wailing rock guitar and his own electronic keyboard touches into the mix without diminishing the band lightness afoot."

-Lloyd Sachs, Chicago Sun Times reviewing the '88 Chicago Jazz Festival


"From the land of the Cubs, White Sox and a a whipping wind comes an arranger with an original, brainy approach to standards, non standards and an original or two.  It's Vente's fresh touch as composer arranger and leader that separates this from the pack."

-Lee Jaske, Cashbox


"Marshall Vente, one of the most inventive arranger/composers in the country, keeps on writing.  Over the last decade.  Vente has crafted the Project into a flexible and powerful tool for his writing, and together they produce some of the city's most exciting music."

-Neil Tesser, Chicago Reader, "Critic's Choice"

Project 9 at the Bulls circa 1986


Isi Perez who has been Marshall's drummer since 1975!


Master saxophonist Pat Mallinger - one of the new guys . . . since '91


Jim Massot, saxes and flute. A 20 year veteran with "Project 9"


Scott Mason, a 20 year veteran with "Project 9"


Terry Connell, lead trumpet, with Marshall since '86


Chicago's great, Anna Dawson, at the Bulls with Project 9.

The hallmark of the annual Marshall Vente Jazz Festival has been its variety: over four packed nights of music, it's often featured more than a dozen groups, only about a third of them actually led by Vente the tireless pianist, arranger, radio host, and entrepreneur whose musical projects have ranged from intimate piano and voice duos to the rowdy Brazilian unit Tropicale to an 18-piece big band. So it's a surprise to find the Saturday in this year's festival dedicated to just one of his bands, Project 9, the current version of his exciting early-80s nonet, Project Nine. The group has expanded more than once, and now numbers between 12 and 14. For this show the guest soloists include former Chicago saxist Jeff Newell, harmonica innovator Howard Levy, and bassist-vocalist Eldee Young, but the extra instrumentation doesn't cloud the translucent voicings Vente learned firsthand from legdendary Miles Davis arranger Gil Evans. (For a while Vente called the band "Project Nine Plus," but last year rechristened it "Project 99," taking a cue from the groups led by Sergio Mendes, from Brasil 66 to Brasil 88.) As in most such midsize ensembles, here the solos take a backseat to the written music: the mostly solid improvisers nestle into the arrangements rather than steering them as they would in a smaller combo, and the regular members' long history together allows them to play Vente's charts with remarkable efficiency.

-Neil Tesser, Chicago Reader, "Critic's Choice"

You will need either the Real Audio player for the Real Audio version and or the players listed below for our MP3 version which are used as plug ins to your browser in order for our music to directly stream in to your computer while on line. 

We recommend the latest Media Player from Microsoft. This player is available for download for Windows PCs as well as for Macintoshes. Another fine player for MP3 files is available from WinAmp. There are also many more MP3 players available for download on the Internet.

You may contact Marshall Vente 
by phone at: (630) 541-3381

Cell phone: (630) 430-5113

or by e-mail at


Marshall Vente 
P.O. Box 1135
Westmont, IL 60559

This web site was designed by John Miles. Web site maintained by christine jeffers web design