Gus Arnold is a professional saxophonist, clarinetist, flautist, composer, arranger, and educator currently residing in Nashville, Tennessee.
Throughout high school, Gus played in both the Alabama Jazz and Concert All-State Bands for four years and won the 2014 All-State Solo Festival Competition with his performance of Jacques Ibert's Concertino da camera. After graduating from Huntsville High School in Huntsville, Alabama, Gus attended the University of North Texas from August 2015 to May 2021 where he obtained both a B.M. (May 2019) and M.M. (May 2021) in Jazz Studies and studied with esteemed saxophonist, Brad Leali. While at UNT, Gus performed in several of the lab bands there, most notably the seven-time Grammy-nominated One O' Clock Lab Band under the direction of Alan Baylock in which he played lead alto sax from August 2019 to May 2021. As a member of the One O' Clock Lab Band, Gus performed with Maria Schneider, Gary Smulyan, and Regina Carter and performed at world-renowned venues such as Birdland Jazz Club and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Rose Theater for the 2020 Inaugural Jack Rudin Jazz Championship in New York City. During the Jack Rudin Jazz Championship, the One O' Clock sax section was awarded "Outstanding Saxophone Section" under Gus's leadership. Gus can also be heard on the One O' Clock Lab Band albums: Lab 2020 and Lab 2021 .
During the summers in between semesters at UNT, Gus played piccolo, flute, clarinet, soprano sax, alto sax, tenor sax, and baritone sax in the pit orchestra for several musicals in Huntsville, Alabama such as In the Heights, Hairspray, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Legally Blonde, and Heathers: The Musical. From May to August 2019, Gus also worked for Norwegian Cruise Lines as a showband musician playing alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, flute, and clarinet for various shows and guest entertainers on the ship.
While pursuing his master's degree, Gus also worked as a teaching fellow for the UNT saxophone studio and Division of Jazz Studies. From August 2019 to May 2021, Gus taught several undergraduate jazz saxophone students, organized jam sessions for the jazz sax studio, and directed the Saxophone Reading Band at UNT. Gus also directed the Fall 2020 Eight O' Clock Lab Band and the Spring 2021 Six O' Clock Lab Band at UNT.
Furthermore, Gus has won several awards outside of school. In April 2019, Gus won the Fourth Annual BMI Future Jazz Master Scholarship for his original composition, "Waltz for Denton," and was recognized in Washington D.C. at the NEA Jazz Masters Awards Dinner where Stanley Crouch, Bob Dorough, Abdullah Ibrahim, and Maria Schneider were endowed as the 2019 NEA Jazz Masters. Additionally, Gus won first place in the 2021 North American Saxophone Alliance Region 4 Jazz Competition and was also a finalist in the 2022 North American Saxophone Alliance National Jazz Competition.
Since graduating from UNT and moving to Nashville in August 2021, Gus frequently performs throughout Nashville with a variety of cover bands, funk bands, pit orchestras for musicals, indie artists, jazz combos and big bands, and world-renowned jazz musicians such as Joel Frahm and Danny Gottlieb. Gus has also performed at renowned venues in Nashville such as Rudy's Jazz Room and The Fisher Center for the Performing Arts. Gus also teaches in-person saxophone, clarinet, and flute lessons in Nashville as well as virtual lessons via Zoom and Skype.