A veteran jazz trumpeter, composer, arranger, and bandleader, TOM HARRELL has steadily garnered international acclaim since the mid-1970s. A frequent favorite of critics' and readers' polls, Harrell is known for his mellifluous sound and is widely regarded as one of the most stylistically versatile improvisers and composers working today. Every album he has made as a leader has found its way into various "top ten" lists worldwide. His Afro-Latin outing, The Art of Rhythm, was named "Best Jazz Album of the Year" by Entertainment Weekly while his big band album, Times Mirror, won a Grammy nomination. His live quintet recording, Live at the Village Vanguard, received numerous awards in Europe, and was followed by Wise Children, an album honored with the SESAC Jazz Award in the fall of 2004.
Harrell tours extensively with his quintet, a band recognized by the readers of Down Beat magazine in its annual polls. Recent television broadcasts of the quintet include San Javier Jazz Festival 2006 in Spain; Viersen Jazz Festival 2006 in Germany; Red Sea Jazz Festival 2005 in Israel; Jazz à Liege 2005 in Belgium; and Chivas Jazz Festival 2004, in Brazil. The band also appeared in Harrell's profiled feature on CBS' 60 Minutes in 2003.
In addition to the 20 album releases and hundreds of concerts worldwide as a leader, Harrell has performed and recorded with other artists including Horace Silver, Dizzy Gillespie, Bill Evans, Gerry Mulligan, Art Farmer, Charles McPherson, Phil Woods, Lee Konitz, Charlie Haden, Joe Lovano, Kathleen Battle, and Jane Monheit.
A graduate of Stanford University with a degree in music composition, Harrell is also a prolific composer and arranger. Hank Jones, Jim Hall, Kenny Barron, Joe Lovano, Carlos Santana, Cold Blood, Azteca, Vince Guaraldi, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Lincoln Center Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, Brussels Jazz Orchestra, and the Metropole Orchestra are among the many who have recorded and/or performed his work.
Harrell's latest recording project is a collaboration with the Danish Radio Big Band; nine new original pieces for the band were recorded in March 2006. He is also at work on a series of albums cumulatively entitled 100 Songs with his current working band featuring Wayne Escoffery on sax, Danny Grissett on piano, Ugonna Okegwo on bass, and Johnathan Blake on drums.