Renee Rosnes

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Renee Rosnes
Renee Rosnes.jpg
Background information
Birth name Irene Louise Rosnes
Born (1962-03-24) 24 March 1962 (age 54)
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Piano
Years active c. 1985–present
Labels Blue Note, Smoke Sessions

Irene Louise Rosnes (born 24 March 1962), professionally known as Renee Rosnes (REE-nee ROSS-ness), is a Canadian jazz pianist, composer, and arranger.

Early life[edit]

Rosnes was born in Regina, Saskatchewan and grew up in North Vancouver, British Columbia, where she attended Handsworth Secondary School. She was three when she began taking classical piano lessons. She became interested in jazz music in high school, introduced to it through her band director Bob Rebagliati. She then attended the University of Toronto, where she pursued classical performance with pianist William Aide. In 1985, Rosnes was awarded a Canada Council of the Arts grant, and moved to New York City to further her studies.[1]


After tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson hired her to play with his quartet in 1986, Rosnes began an international career. In 1988, she was a member of the Wayne Shorter Band and in 1989, she joined trombonist JJ Johnson's Quintet and remained his pianist of choice until he retired in 1997. In 1989, she also began working with tenor master James Moody and was the pianist in his quartet for the next 20 years. Rosnes frequently performs with vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson, and recorded "For Sentimental Reasons" with his quartet in 2007. She was a founding member of the SFJAZZ Collective, and played with the all-star octet from 2004 through 2009. Since 2012, she has been a member of bassist Ron Carter's Foursight Band. The group toured Europe during the fall of 2015.[2]

As a leader, Rosnes has released twelve recordings, nine on Blue Note Records. Manhattan Rain (Pony Canyon Japan), features Steve Nelson on vibes, Rich Perry on tenor sax, Peter Washington on bass and Bill Stewart on drums. She also made four Japanese trio recordings for the VideoArts label with The Drummonds, featuring herself, drummer and ex-husband Billy Drummond and the unrelated Ray Drummond on bass. Rosnes married jazz pianist Bill Charlap on 25 August 2007, and the couple released a piano duet recording titled Double Portrait.[3]

She was the host of Jazz Profiles, a radio show on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in which Rosnes profiled famous names in Canadian jazz. Guests included pianists Paul Bley, Joe Sealy and Oliver Jones, bassists Don Thompson and Michel Donato, trumpeters Guido Basso and Kenny Wheeler, and drummer Terry Clarke.[4]

Awards and honors[edit]

  • Juno Award, Best Jazz Album, For the Moment (1992)
  • Juno Award, Best Mainstream Jazz Album, Free Trade (1995), Ancestors (1997)
  • Juno Award, Traditional Jazz Album of the Year, Life on Earth (2003)
  • Juno nomination, Best Jazz Album, Renee Rosnes (1991)
  • Juno nomination, Best Mainstream Jazz Album, As We Are Now (1998)
  • Juno nomination, Best Traditional Jazz Album – Instrumental, Art & Soul (2000)
  • Composer of the Year, SOCAN, 2003
  • Outstanding Jazz Recording of the Year, Western Canadian Music Award, Deep Cove by Ryga Rosnes Quartet (2005)
  • Sikh Centennial Gala Award, Sikh Foundation of Canada, 2015[5]


As leader[edit]

  • 1989: Face to Face (Toshiba/EMI)
  • 1990: Renee Rosnes (Blue Note)
  • 1990: For the Moment (Blue Note)
  • 1992: Without Words (Blue Note)
  • 1996: Ancestors (Blue Note)
  • 1997: As We Are Now (Blue Note)
  • 1999: Art & Soul (Blue Note)
  • 2001: With a Little Help from My Friends (Blue Note)
  • 2002: Life on Earth (Blue Note)
  • 2003: Renee Rosnes and the Danish Radio Big Band (Blue Note)
  • 2004: Deep Cove (CBC)
  • 2005: A Time for Love (Video Arts)
  • 2008: Black Narcissus: A Tribute to Joe Henderson (Pony Canyon/M&I)
  • 2010: Double Portrait (Blue Note) with Bill Charlap
  • 2010: Manhattan Rain (Pony Canyon)
  • 2016: Written in the Rocks (Smoke Sessions)

With SFJAZZ Collective[edit]

As sideperson[edit]


  1. ^ "She-bop: Renee Rosnes. Saturday Night. April, 1993.". Retrieved 27 September 2016. 
  2. ^ "Ron Carter Foursight "Dear Miles" - Port of Rotterdam North Sea Jazz Festival". Retrieved 27 September 2016. 
  3. ^ "Bill Charlap, Renee Rosnes Duet In 'Double Portrait'". Retrieved 27 September 2016. 
  4. ^ "The Jazz Portraits". Retrieved 27 September 2016. 
  5. ^ "Event Details - Sikh Foundation of Canada". Retrieved 27 September 2016. 

External links[edit]