A native of São Paulo, Brazil, Felipe Salles has been an active musician in the US since 1995, and has worked and recorded with prominent jazz artists, including Randy Brecker, David Liebman, Lionel Loueke, Jerry Bergonzi, Chico Pinheiro, Jovino Santos Neto, Oscar Stagnaro, Souza, and Bob Moses. He has toured extensively in Europe, North and South America, India and Australia, as a sideman and as a leader of his own group.
Salles is a 2018 Guggenheim Foundation Composition Fellow, a 2015 NALAC Fund for the Arts Grant winner, a 2009-2010 winner of the French American Jazz Exchange Grant, and a 2005-2006 winner of the Chamber Music America New Works: Creation and Presentation Grant Program, sponsored by The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. He was also awarded First Place in the 2001 Concurso SGAE de Jazz "TETE MONTOLIU", Spain. His arrangements and compositions have been performed by The Metropole Orchestra, UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra, Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic Violas, and Meta4 String Quartet, among others.
Salles has released eight critically acclaimed recordings as an ensemble leader. Downbeat magazine describes Departure (Tapestry, 2012) as “crafting pieces that juggle intriguing complexity with buoyant rhythms and lush colors”. JazzTimes magazine noted that “Felipe Salles blends the visceral and the cerebral on his fascinating fifth album, infusing classical modernist strains with the buoyant rhythms of his Brazilian homeland”. Ugandan Suite (Tapestry, 2014) was praised by jazz guitarist Lionel Loueke as “one of the best progressive works I have heard in a long time. What a great blend of classical, African and Jazz music”. Varanda (Tapestry, 2017) with The Reunion Project, also earned critical acclaim (Downbeat magazine, 4.5 stars).
The Lullaby Project (Tapestry, 2018), Salles’ first large jazz ensemble recording, received critical acclaim (Downbeat magazine’s best albums of the year 2019). His second, The New Immigrant Experience, a CD/DVD set (Tapestry, 2020), received critical acclaim, including a 4.5 stars review from Downbeat, making the magazine’s list of best albums of 2020.
Felipe Salles is a D’Addario Woodwinds Select Reeds and Conn-Selmer Saxophones Artist/Clinician. He currently leads both The Felipe Salles Group and The Felipe Salles’ Interconnections Ensemble and is a member of the New World Jazz Composers Octet, Kyle Saulnier's Awakening Orchestra, Alex Alvear's Mango Blue, and Gonzalo Grau's La Clave Secreta.