All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Sean Nowell

Sean Nowell Sean Nowell

Sean Nowell is a tenor saxophonist and composer from Birmingham, Alabama steeped in the southern traditions of blues, gospel, jazz, and funk fused with the complex harmonic and world rhythmic concepts that permeate the music of New York City. While in Alabama, he sang in cathedrals with a national touring a cappella choir and was exposed to vocal music from Germany, Eastern Europe, and Africa. He received a BA in Composition from Berklee College of Music in Boston in Jazz Composition and a MA from Manhattan School of Music in New York in Performance. He has composed and improvised film scores, music for ballet and theatre, 20th century classical music, big band, and small jazz ensembles and has pushed the timbral boundaries of the saxophone, flute, bass clarinet, and Udu (Nigerian clay pot drum) by integrating electronic effects pedals with those acoustic instruments. He has traveled and collaborated with dancers, actors, painters, stilt walkers, and acrobats on multiple tours of China, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Macedonia, Bosnia, Serbia, Romania, France, Germany, Hungary, Holland, Belgium, Colombia, Venezuela, Singapore and the United States as Musical Director for Bond Street Theatre over the past decade. He’s participated in united clashing religious and ethnic groups in Kosovo through music and has been proud to serve as an unofficial artistic ambassador for the United States by exchanging social and artistic ideas and holding master classes in these countries on American Jazz, learning the folk music of the regions, and then incorporating it into his compositional and improvisational style. He has had performances with Reeves Gabrels (guitarist, David Bowie Tin Machine), Tim Lefebvre (bass, Rudder, Saturday Night Live, Chris Botti), Donny McCaslin (sax, Dave Douglas), Anton Fig (drums, David Letterman, everyone else from the past 25 years!). He also recorded with Stanley Clarke and George Duke for the movie “Soul Men” starring Bernie Mac and Samuel Jackson and co-wrote the score for the Nick Nolte movie “Off the Black”.

Read more

Tags

Album Review
Take Five With...
Album Review
Read more articles
“Sean Nowell is my preferred kind of tenor player: quick, smart, tough, and counter intuitive. He is the real deal” - Thomas Conrad

“Tenor Saxophonist/Composer Sean Nowell fuses introspective melodies, darkly hued harmonies and angular rhythmic structures to create a sound that has succeeded at melding, morphing and mixing the best of Blue Note-era small group nirvana with the Headhunters’ pocket and vibe, evolving it to Right Now.” - All About Jazz

“Cerebral music, but played with soul and feeling; ballads that somehow build into frenetic climaxes.” - the Manhattan Times

“Nowell's first solo shows his big-tenor influences and up-to-the minute chops, punctuated by tasteful over- blowing running perfectly counter to the gutbucket jam, then growing Brecker-esquely dense.” - All About Jazz

“…building to a deft, robust tenor sax solo by Sean Nowell” - The Boston Globe

“Nowell plays with a mellow tone, swings hard, and sidles up to Coltranian heights….” -the Manhattan Times

Primary Instrument

Saxophone, tenor

Willing to teach

Beginner to advanced

Credentials/Background

currently teaching alot in connecticut. i have 10 years of private student experience and a bunch of excited students.

Photos

Albums

Album The Kung-Fu Masters by Sean Nowell

The Kung-Fu Masters

Posi-Tone Records
2013

buy
Album Stockholm Swingin' by Sean Nowell

Stockholm Swingin'

Posi-Tone Records
2011

buy
Album The Seeker by Sean Nowell

The Seeker

Posi-Tone Records
2009

buy
Album Firewerks by Sean Nowell

Firewerks

Nowell Music
2007

buy
For All Intensive Purposes

For All Intensive Purposes

Sean Nowell
The Seeker

Watch

Similar

Roy Hargrove Roy Hargrove
trumpet
Joe Lovano Joe Lovano
saxophone, tenor
Jaleel Shaw Jaleel Shaw
saxophone, alto
David Binney David Binney
saxophone
Woody Shaw Woody Shaw
trumpet
Chris Cheek Chris Cheek
saxophone
Scott Colley Scott Colley
bass, acoustic
Evan Marien Evan Marien
bass, electric

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and through our retail affiliations you'll support us in the process.

MUSICSTACK
Rare vinyl LPs and CDs from over 1,000 independent sellers
AMAZON
CDs, Vinyl, Blu-Ray DVDS, Prime membership, Alexa, SONOS and more
HD TRACKS
Specializing in high resolution and CD-quality downloads
CD UNIVERSE
Specializing in music, movies and video games
REVERB
Marketplace for new, used, and vintage instruments and gear

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.