Will Connell received a CAPS grant for orchestral composition in 1980 and has recorded with Chico Hamilton, various William Parker ensembles, including the Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra, the Walter Thompson Big Band, the composer's collective Commitment, and Steve Swell.
He has performed and/or toured with Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Horace Tapscott, Sam Rivers' Winds of Manhattan, David Murray Big Band, Cecil Taylor, Anthony Braxton, Pharoah Sanders, Butch Morris, Roy Campbell, Billy Bang, Tito Nieves, Elton John, Ryan Adams, and many others.
As a copyist/arranger he has worked for musicians ranging from Ornette Coleman, Julius Hemphill, Matthew Shipp to Stevie Wonder, Roberta Flack, Michael Jackson, Simon and Garfunkel.
His compositions have been recorded by Azar Lawrence, David Murray, and Don Pullen. He is currently a member of the composer's collective Silverback,featuring Frank Lacy, Newman Taylor Baker,and Hilliard Greene, his own ensemble Sadhana, with Vincent Chancey, French Horn, the Sound Vision Orchestra, Steve Swell's N.O.W. Ensemble, and Cecil Taylor's Orchestra.
Mr. Connell has been profiled in The Dark Tree, a book about the Los Angeles Black Arts, written by Steven Isoardi and published by California University Press.