The Utah Saxophone Quartet was formed at Brigham Young University in 1983 to be an exemplary ensemble for BYU saxophone students and to provide a performance outlet for the members involved. When Ray Smith was hired to teach saxophone at BYU in 1982, it was his dream to bring the fine art of saxophone quartet performance to Utah. The Utah Saxophone Quartet has been a pioneering ensemble in Utah since that time.
The current personnel has been stable since about 1985, and all the members of the quartet are BYU School of Music alumni. In fact, they have been friends since high school and have studied with several common teachers, including Steve Allen and David Randall, former director of the BYU School of Music.
The quartet has always used the French saxophone quartet instrumentation with Ray Smith on soprano, Daron Bradford on alto, David Feller on tenor, and Gaylen Smith on baritone. All of the members of the ensemble double on multiple woodwinds, and the quartet will often add clarinet quartets, flute quartets, or mixed woodwind quartets to concert programs. This album includes four clarinet quartets on CD Two.
Each member of the quartet is extensively active in the Utah recording scene, and all are mainstays in the Utah performance arena.