Kevin Fort has established himself as one of the most in demand pianists on the Chicago jazz scene. Known for his warm touch and virtuosic yet lyrical improvisations, Kevin is a champion of the straight-ahead jazz tradition while embracing modern influences. He has performed and/or recorded with artists such as Bob Brookmeyer, John Clayton, James Moody, Ira Sullivan, Slide Hampton, Phil Woods, Steve Turre, Bill Watrous, Louie Bellson, Harry Allen, George Fludas, Andy Brown, and Makaya McCraven.
Kevin was inspired to pursue a career in jazz by his father’s love of alto saxophone. Eavesdropping on jam sessions at the house and regularly listening to his dad’s classic jazz record collection helped to refine Kevin’s ear and develop his appreciation for the music.
After high school, Kevin enrolled at the DePaul University School of Music, where he graduated with highest honors, earning both his BA and MM in Jazz Studies. While there, he studied piano with Chicago jazz legend Larry Novak.
Kevin has recorded three albums as a leader. Red Gold (2014) and Perspectives (2022) proved popular with a global audience, garnering over two million streams across streaming services. All About Jazz described Kevin as “one of the young lions of the piano deserving of attention.” Chicago Jazz Magazine said that he displays “thrilling virtuosity and agile, vibrant improvisations.”
Kevin’s latest album, Twilight, releases on October 5, 2023. Accompanied by bandmates Joe Policastro and Jon Deitemyer, the group pays homage to the classic piano trio albums of the past while incorporating Kevin’s unique take on the art form.
Currently, Kevin serves as a faculty member at the Northwestern University Bienen School of Music, where he imparts his passion for jazz to the next generation of emerging artists.
Kevin Fort is a Yamaha Artist.