Born in Grand Rapids, MI, Jay Sawyer has studied jazz drumming with several outstanding and well-respected jazz artists. Among them, the great Billy Hart, Tim Froncek, Keith Hall and Dana Hall. Each nurtured his passion and skill for the art of jazz percussion. As a student at Western Michigan University, Jay performed with the well-known WMU Jazz Orchestra and Jazz Nonet under the direction of Professors Trent Kynaston and Scott Cowan. These groups toured extensively and participated in several well-known jazz festivals that include the Notre Dame, Elmhurst and Detroit Jazz Festivals. Jay continued his studies as Graduate Assistant to Dana Hall while at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. There he got work with such artists as Chip McNeill, Chip Stephens, Jim Pugh, Tito Carillo, Glenn Wilson, Ron Bridgewater, Dana Hall and many others. Jay received his Bachelors of Music from Western Michigan University and his Masters of Music from The University of Illinois. He has performed or shared the stage with artists such as Stefon Harris, Donny McCaslin and many others. He has also performed at the Detroit and Chicago Jazz Festivals as well as many other prominent venues around the USA. Jay currently resides in New York City.