Carl Allen (drummer)

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Carl Allen (born April 25, 1961) is an American jazz drummer.

He has worked with a wide variety of musicians, including Freddie Hubbard, Jackie McLean,[1] George Coleman,[2] Phil Woods,[3] the Benny Green Trio, and Rickie Lee Jones.

It was with Green that Allen met bassist Christian McBride. The two have teamed up frequently, working for many combos of big name leaders. McBride recruited Allen for his band, Christian McBride & Inside Straight. Allen is that quintet's drummer for both its first recording Kinda' Brown and its road tours.

In 1988 Allen and Vincent Herring founded Big Apple Productions, which produced several albums featuring young jazz performers.

He joined the faculty of The Juilliard School in 2001, and became the Artistic Director of Jazz Studies in 2008.[4] He was replaced as director by Wynton Marsalis in 2013, and left Juilliard at the end of the academic year.[5]

In 2011, Allen appeared in the HBO series Tremé as himself for two episodes in a studio recording scene in New York.[6]

in 2014, he formed his own group, The Art of Elvin to pay tribute to Art Blakey and Elvin Jones. The band debuted at the Percussive Arts Society (PAS) conference in Indianapolis, with Allen on drums, Freddie Hendrix (trumpet), Tivon Pennicott (tenor sax), Xavier Davis (piano), Yasushi Nakamura (bass).[7]


As leader[edit]

  • The Pursuer (Atlantic Records, 1994)
  • Testimonial (Atlantic Records, 1995)


  • Live From The Detroit Jazz Festival -2013 (Mack Avenue, 2014)

co-led with Rodney Whitaker[edit]

  • Get Ready (Mack Avenue, 2007)
  • Work to Do (Mack Avenue, 2009)

with Manhattan Project[edit]

  • Dreamboat (Alfa Jazz Records / Timeless Records, 2000)
  • Piccadilly Square (Alfa Jazz Records / Timeless Records)
  • The Dark Side of Dewey (Alfa Jazz Records / Evidence Records, 1996)
  • Echoes of Our Heros (Alfa Jazz Japan, 1996)
  • We Remember Cannonball (Alfa Jazz Japan, 1997)

As sideman[edit]

With Arkadia Jazz All Stars

  • Thank You, Joe!

With Don Braden

  • After Dark (Criss Cross Jazz, 1994)
  • The Time Is Now (Criss Cross, 1994)
  • Wish List (Criss Cross, 1994)

With Cyrus Chestnut

  • The Nutman Speaks (Alfa Jazz Records)
  • The Nutman Speaks Again (Alfa Jazz Records, 2003)
  • Another Direction (Alfa Jazz Records)

With Art Farmer

  • The Company I Keep (Arabesque, 2009)
  • The Meaning of Art (Arabesque, 2009)

With the Benny Green Trio

  • Blue Notes (Toshiba-EMI Japan)
  • That’s Right (Blue Note)
  • Testifying (Blue Note)

With Freddie Hubbard

  • Life Flight (Blue Note)
  • Topsy (Alfa Jazz Records)
  • MMTC (MusicMasters Records)

With Jackie McLean

  • Dynasty (Triloka Records)
  • Rites of Passage (Triloka Records)
  • The J-Mac Attack (Birdology / Verve Records)

With Dewey Redman

With Woody Shaw

With Phil Woods

  • Alto Summit (Milestone, 1996)

With Eliane Elias

With Christian McBride


  1. ^ Yanow, Scott. "Carl Allen: Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  2. ^ Yanow, Scott. "Pursuer: Review". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  3. ^ Dryden, Ken. "Alto Summit: Review". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  4. ^ "Music Division - Jazz Studies: Carl Allen". Juilliard School. Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  5. ^ Wynton Marsalis to Lead Jazz Studies at Juilliard - New York Times, 10.28.2013
  6. ^ Tremé -
  7. ^ Biography -

External links[edit]