“Nobody writes like this.” – Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune
As a composer, recording artist and performer, saxophonist Shawn Maxwell has endeavored to express his own unique voice. From his latest album Millstream (Jazzline, 2020) to his debut Originals (self-released, 2005), he has released nine albums of original compositions. The traditions of jazz form the foundation for Shawn’s music; he builds on that with material from the music he grew up with – rock, funk, hip hop, R&B, classical. The result, as Hrayr Attarian wrote in Chicago Jazz Magazine, “is refreshingly distinct yet recognizably Maxwellian”. He’s not intent on following any rules – or on breaking them – but on continually expanding what his music encompasses.
“…a composer who’s confident in his artistic vision, and comfortable with the wide array of colors on his instrumental palette.” – Bobby Reed, Downbeat Magazine
For the past three years, Shawn has been touring the U.S. with his quintet Shawn Maxwell’s New Tomorrow. Their first album, Shawn Maxwell’s New Tomorrow (OA2/Origin, 2016), was named one of Downbeat Magazine’s “Best Albums of 2017”. The follow-up, Music in My Mind (OA2/Origin, 2018), was highly praised by critics and enthusiastically received by radio stations. It was chosen as a Downbeat Magazine Editor’s Pick in June 2018.
“…jaunty, angular melodies, deceptive time signatures, and metronomic rhythm arrangements – sound as if inhabited by the ghost of Zappa…” – Neil Tesser