sue orfield


Sue Orfield plays the tenor saxophone with the whimsy of Sonny Rollins, the passion of Kurt Cobain, the soul of Bill Withers, and the joy of Ella Fitzgerald. Along with a compelling mastery of her instrument, Sue brings to the stage a powerful presence and joy of all things musical.

Sue has played with many musical greats over the years, including Bo Diddley, Bobby McFerrin, The Indigo Girls, Ann Wilson (Heart), Dizzy Gillespie, Ivan Neville, Jo Dee Messina, among others. She tours internationally with several groups, including The Tiptons Sax Quartet (formerly The Billy Tipton Memorial Saxophone Quartet) (Seattle/NYC), and Ellen Whyte (Portland). 

Sue was voted "Best Horn" by the Washington Blues Society for the years 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004.

Her own group, The Sue Orfield Band (SOB), highlights Orfield's talents as a composer as well as a player. SOB was voted Best Jazz Band in Volume One's "Best Of The Chippewa Valley 2009" reader poll (Eau Claire, WI).  In fact, every year since 2009, Sue’s groups AcoustiHoo and The Sue Orfield Band have been recognized as one of the top three bands in the area, in the jazz, blues, and rock categories.  Most recently, in response to the community’s inability to put Sue in a consistent genre, Volume One noted Sue as the “Best Sue Orfield”!

Sue makes her home in the Chippewa Valley of Wisconsin, and  plays locally with bands from all over Wisconsin and Minnesota, including AcoustiHoo, The Chippewa Valley Jazz Orchestra, Catya's Trio, The Butanes, Deep Water Reunion, Combo Flambe,  and many more.

“Orfield turned up the heat beyond boil....Orfield is one of the most powerful, most songful, most spirited tenor players I’ve heard. And her art, and her joy, went viral at the AQ (Artists’ Quarter). Let it spread far and wide.”

Andrea Canter

Jazz Ink Minneapolis, MN, 2011

“...and the most amazing thing is that Sue Orfield isn’t a national artist with a major record deal.” 
Malcom Kennedy
The Washington Blues Society Bluesletter Seattle, WA, 2011
“A fiery tenor sax player (Sue Orfield) with amazing energy and proficiency wailed above and harmonized with the voices...” 

Jordan Marshall
Blues Pipeline of The Anchorage Press Anchorage, AK

“Nowadays, it’s difficult to speak the English language with out being conscious of gender issues, but in the midst of hearing Sue Orfield play tenor saxophone..the trappings of political correctness fade from the mind, and the real issue takes over:  The music. Sue is...truly an awesome performer...with depth and character. Sue Orfield is one of these rare players who can deliver technique with charisma.” 

Dave Desrochers

The Washington Blues Society Bluesletter Seattle, WA