Primary Instrument: Piano
Ellen Rowe has been described as that rare ‘triple threat’ of pianist, composer-arranger, and teacher (Arizona Daily Star), a title that until recently kept her too busy to actually record an album under her own name. That situation has been thankfully rectified with the recent debut release of Sylvan Way, a dynamic work that combines standards and intriguing original compositions that soar with emotion and expression. Bassist Rufus Reid states Ellen Rowe has produced an excellent recording that showcases her immense talents as a composer and pianist. This CD definitely invites repeated listening. Enjoy Sylvan Way, as I have....
The Ellen Rowe Quartet Performance at the International Association for Jazz Education conference was spellbinding. These Ann Arbor musicians are world class and held their own with all the national names. - Linda Yohn, Music Director, WEMU radio
Ellen Rowe's new release [Denali Pass] is a beautifully balanced and inspired journey, that showcases her abilities as a strong conceptualist pianist and band leader. Everyone contributes exciting performances throughout. - Geri Allen
Rowe's writing stands comparison with the best contemporary jazz composers. The Ellen Rowe Quartet deserves wider recognition, with the beautifully realized Wishing Well a rich and engaging testament to this band's talent. –Bruce Lindsay, AllAboutJazz.com
Sylvan Way is a straight-ahead album of aural solace in the musical jungle. Rowe manifests a hardy command of the instrument, dropping solid phrases in the pocket and giving her notes added weight by using something oft lacking in even the best players: space. Rowe renderings like The Phoenix....reveal a composer who lets her melodies come forth with unadorned ease, as natural as if she were skipping flat stones across a pond. - Christopher Bahnsen, Currents, February 2002
Ellen Rowe has produced an excellent recording, Sylvan Way, that showcases her immense talents as a composer and pianist. Ellen's original creations possess lyricism and harmonic surprises that take no back seat next to the standard material presented. The program is nicely balanced with swinging tunes, Latin flavors and caresses the listener with lush romantic moods. Ellen assembles three excellent rhythm sections with one horn to accompany her. Stellar bassist John Clayton, is featured with his bow on Rowe's hauntingly beautiful ballad, Hymn. This CD definitely invites repeated listening. Enjoy, Sylvan Way, as I have. Bravo, Ms. Rowe! - Rufus Reid
A polished, engaging pianist; a rare convergence of technique, emotion and soul. - Richard Crawford, Director, American Music Institute
She phrases with quiet authority, letting rich and beguiling harmonies develop gradually.
She is indeed that rare ‘triple threat’ of pianist, composer-arranger, and teacher...the best possible role model for young women trying to make it in jazz. - Ken Keuffel, Arizona Daily Star
...a gifted composer who can move with ease from thumb-popping funk to straight-ahead be-bop. - Kansas City Star
...as soon as she began to improvise, the effect was indescribably melodic. The audience was entranced; you could hear a pin drop. - Die Oberlander (Switzerland)