Frank Wagner

Musician / Educator / Composer



Frank Wagner was born in Levittown, New York. Graduating in 1980, Frank attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, studying jazz bass with Steve Swallow and Ron McClure as well as classical music with William Curtis from the Boston Philharmonic and Walter Botti of the New York Philharmonic. During the following two years, he began his professional career while studying brass and percussion instruments at Hofstra University. He has performed all over the world in a host of musical settings including all star jazz bands, Broadway shows, national tours, recording sessions, cabaret, society bands, and classical orchestras. Some of the big bands Frank has toured with are: Buddy Rich, Larry Elgart's Manhattan Swing Orchestra, Glenn Miller and Clem Derosa's All Stars.

Mr. Wagner has played numerous Broadway shows, jingle sessions, society orchestras and classical chamber groups. He has taught music throughout his career in a variety of capacities. Mr. Wagner served as a faculty member at the Rudolf Steiner School in New York City. He has played in many small jazz band settings including: Tiny Grimes, Milt Jackson, Ray Nance, Gary Smulyan, Earth Kitt, Bobby Sanabria, Joe Puma, Johnny Ray, Eddie Fisher, and Carrie Smith to name a few. In 1989, Mr. Wagner returned to formal study and entered the City College of New York as an art major with a minor in psychology. While at City College Frank studied with Ron Carter privately and played in his bass ensemble. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1993, Magna Cum Laude and was admitted into Phi Beta Kappa.

In 1995, Mr. Wagner was accepted into NYU’s Music Therapy program and in 1997 graduated with a Master’s Degree in Art. For the past 20 years, he has been practicing music therapy at Brooklyn's Woodhull Hospital in Inpatient Psychiatry and chemical dependency department. He is an adjunct professor at Queensborough Community College and Pratt Institute, teaching composition,jazz theory and music therapy.

For the past 12 years Mr. Wagner can be heard on many cd's of Eugene Marlow's Heritage Jazz Ensemble at eugenemarlow.com/the-heritage-ensemble/. This ensemble specializes in playing Israeli folk tunes in an African Cuban genre. Under the management of Ann Braithwaite, Frank's past album with his group Primary Colours, "Past, Present and Future" on Jazzheads Records received acclaimed recognition winning Herb Wong's Blue Chip CD award. Mr. Wagner's latest recording entitled, "Floating Holiday" on meii records has also received stellar reviews.



  • Fri June 21, 2019 5pm / Emily Cavanagh / Elkhart Jazz Fest - Elkhart, Indiana

  • Sat June 22, 2019 1pm / Emily Cavanagh / Elkhart Jazz Fest - Elkhart, Indiana

  • Sat June 22, 2019 4:30pm / Emily Cavanagh / Elkhart Jazz Fest - Elkhart, Indiana

  • Sun June 23, 2019 11:30am / Emily Cavanagh / Elkhart Jazz Fest - Elkhart, Indiana

  • Fri July 12, 2019 6pm / Heritage Jazz Ensemble / Pierre Hotel, New York City

  • Fri July 19, 2019 8-12pm / Steve Sandberg Trio / Cleopatra's Needle, New York City

  • Fri July 28, 2019 / Frank Wagner Trio Recording / Benny's Wash N' Dry, Brooklyn, New York

  • Sun Aug 9, 2019 8-12pm / Steve Sandberg Trio / Cleopatra's Needle, New York City

  • Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:30-9:30pm / Kurt Wieting Trio / Harvard Club, New York City

  • Mon Sept 12, 2019 4:30pm / Heritage Jazz Ensemble (duo) / Baruch College, New York City

  • Thurs Sept 15, 2019 6-9pm / Kurt Wieting Trio / La Grenoville, New York City

  • Mon Sept 19, 2019 8-12am / Dave Meade Trio / Cleopatra's Needle, New York City

  • Sun Sept 29, 2019 11:30-2:30pm / Alan Bates Quartet / Valleries, New York City

  • Sat Oct 5, 2019 / Heritage Jazz Ensemble / Filomen M. D'Agostino Greenberg Music School at 92 st Y, New York City

  • Mon Oct 7, 2019 12:30-2:30pm / Heritage Jazz Ensemble (Duo) / "Music That Heals" / NYU Langone Medical Center, New York City



  • Sun Oct 13, 2019 11:30-2:30pm / Alan Bates vibes, Dave Meade drums / Valerie restaurant Jazz brunch, 45 West 45th st., New York City

  • Thurs Oct 24, 2019 7pm / Jackie Draper "Repeal The Blues" / Laurie Beechman Theatre / New York City

  • Sat Nov 9, 2019 / Private affair: Jewish Hora Band / Brooklyn, New York

  • Fri Nov 15, 2019 6:30pm / Kurt Wieting Trio / Harvard Club, New York City

  • Sat Dec 7, 2019 6:30pm / Private affair: Emily Cavanagh Trio / West Orange, New Jersey

  • Sun Dec 15, 2019 1pm / Heritage Jazz Ensemble / Temple Beth, Jersey City, NJ

  • Sun Dec 20, 2019 6:30-9:30pm / Kurt Weiting piano, Alan Bates drums / Harvard Club, New York City

  • Sun Dec 23, 2019 / Heritage Jazz Ensemble (Duo) Gene Marlow piano / NYU Langone Medical Center, New York City

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