Neil Cowley

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Neil Cowley
Born (1972-11-05) 5 November 1972 (age 46)
LabelsHide Inside
Associated actsDiamond Wookie
/Fragile State
Green Nuns of the Revolution
Emeli Sandé

Neil Cowley (born 5 November 1972) is a contemporary jazz pianist whose previous incarnations include Fragile State, the Green Nuns of the Revolution, and the Neil Cowley Trio, which appeared on Later... with Jools Holland in April 2008 and won the 2007 BBC Jazz Award for best album for Displaced.[1]


Cowley was born in London.[2] He began as a classical pianist and performed a Shostakovich piano concerto at the age of 10 at Queen Elizabeth Hall. In his late teens Cowley moved into being a keyboardist for soul and funk acts Mission Impossible, the Brand New Heavies, Gabrielle and Zero 7. He also appeared as a co-composer and session musician with the jazz-rock group Samuel Purdey. An early album was "Foxbury Rules", released under the pseudonym Diamond Wookie.

In 2002 he formed the duo Fragile State with Ben Mynott; after its end, the Neil Cowley Trio.[1] In 2006 he released an album called Soundcastles under the name Pretz.

In 2008 the Neil Cowley Trio recorded cover versions of the Beatles' "Revolution 1" and "Revolution 9" for Mojo magazine. In 2012, he appeared as the session pianist on Adele's album 21.

In 2013 he was Musician in Residence for Derry when it was designated the inaugural UK City of Culture.[3]

On 16 September 2016 the album Spacebound Apes was released by Neil Cowley Trio.[4]


As leader/co-leader[edit]

Neil Cowley Trio

  • Displaced (2006)[5]
  • Loud... Louder... Stop! (2008)[6]
  • Radio Silence (2010)
  • The Face of Mount Molehill (2012)[7]
  • Touch and Flee (2014) [8]
  • Spacebound Apes (2016) [9]

Neil Cowley

  • Spacebound Tapes (2018) [10]

With Diamond Wookie

  • Foxbury Rules

With Fragile State

  • Nocturnal Beats
  • The Facts And The Dreams (2003)
  • Voices From The Dust Bowl (2004)[11]

With Green Nuns of the Revolution

  • Rock Bitch Mafia (1997)[12]

With Pretz

  • Soundcastles (2006)

As sideman[edit]



  1. ^ a b Sowerby, Neil (2008-04-17). "Cowley's clash of genius". Manchester Evening News.
  2. ^ "Neil Cowley Trio: Slims". 18 April 2013. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  3. ^ "Meet Neil Cowley - PRS for Music Foundation". PRS for Music Foundation. Retrieved 2016-06-21.
  4. ^ Jazz, All About. "Neil Cowley Trio: Spacebound Apes". All About Jazz. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  5. ^ Nicholson, Stuart (2006-06-18). "The Neil Cowley Trio, Displaced". Observer Music Monthly.
  6. ^ Fordham, John (2008-03-28). "Neil Cowley, Loud ... Louder ... Stop!". The Guardian.
  7. ^ Fordham, John (12 January 2012). "Neil Cowley Trio: The Face of Mount Molehill – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 January 2012.
  8. ^ "Jazz News - Jazzwise Magazine - London". Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  9. ^ "Neil Cowley Trio: Spacebound Apes (Hide Inside Records) - Bearded Magazine: The Home of Independent Music". Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  10. ^ "Self-Titled - Stream Neil Cowley Trio's Spacebound Tapes EP, Featuring Remixes From Rival Consoles, Throwing Snow, and More". Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  11. ^ "BBC - Dance Review - Fragile State, Voices From The Dust *Radio Silence (2010) Bowl".
  12. ^ "Green Nuns Of The Revolution - Rock Bitch Mafia". Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  13. ^ Allmusic; retrieved 09/06/14
  14. ^ Discogs; retrieved 09/06/14

External links[edit]