Bill O'Connell (Steinway Artist) on four separate occasions, recipient of the coveted “Jazz Writer of the Year” award from SESAC.
Bill is currently performing with Dave Valentin, Conrad Herwig’s Latin Side, his trio “Triple Play’”, his The Latin Jazz All Stars and teaching at Rutgers University.
Bill O'Connell & the Latin Jazz All Stars
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Bill released his CD, “Rhapsody in Blue” on the Challenge/Twinz label in September/2010. Writes Rob Young “ When I hear music of this magnitude, I can’t help but celebrate the beauty it embellishes!” Bill has recently been performing the music from this CD at the world renowned jazz club in New York City “Birdland”. Bill has released two CD’s in 2011. The first was a live solo performance from a concert in Moscow , “After The Dust Settled” (September/2011/ Random Chance label). This is a very special composition that Bill wrote after the events of 9/11 ten years ago. Bill’s most recent release “Triple Play Plus Three” (October/2011) is on the ZOHO label. It features Richie Flores, Dave Valentin, Dave Samuels and Paquito D’Rivera.

“Latin Jazz Fantasy” released in June 2004 is a recording that features Bill’s compositions in an orchestral and small group setting. George Carroll writes in his review, “ The range of his artistic spectrum seems limitless, and I suggest that my readers will be moved by this colossus of musical dignity and improvisational authority.”

Bill’s recording “Black Sand,” The Bill O’Connell Latin Jazz Project, was released in September 2001 and featured Dave Valentin, Randy Brecker, Andy Gonzalez, Steve Berrios and others. As Mark Holston writes,” Putting the primary accent on the Latin side of the stylistic equation proves the point Bill O’Connell has been making all of his professional life-Black Sand sizzles

Music may take 15 to 20 seconds to start (well worth the wait)
Monk's Cha Cha Rhapsody in Blue Barcelona Fast Eddie Blacksand
After The Dust Settled 10 Years Later Live In Moscow
Bill O’Connell is a native New Yorker who studied classical composition at The Oberlin Conservatory of Music. Early in his career, he played and composed in various salsa and jazz settings that set the tone for his musical style.
In 1977, he joined salsa great Mongo Santamaria, writing and performing with him for over two years. Following that he worked with Chet Baker and jazz legend Sonny Rollins with whom he toured the United States and Europe .
Bill, an internationally recognized composer, has his original compositions on CDs by Mongo Santamaria, Emily Remler, Charles Fambrough, and on virtually every recording made by flutist Dave Valentin. He has also written for television including a documentary about Latin Jazz legend, Tito Puente.
Over the years, Bill has displayed his versatility performing, writing and arranging for numerous other jazz artists including Gato Barbieri, The Fort Apache Band, and vocalists Jon Lucien, Kenny Rankin, and Astrud Gilberto. Bill was featured as a pianist and arranger on the recent CD (2010) by trombonist Conrad Herwig, “The Latin Side of Herbie Hancock”.

Bill's eight solo recordings
which consist of predominantly of his own compositions are “Searching” on the Inner City label, “Love for Sale” on the Pony Canyon Label, “Signature, featuring Bill O’Connell” on the Blue Moon Mesa label, “Lost Voices” on the CTI label, “Black Sand” and “Latin Jazz Fantasy” on the Random Chance label , “Triple Play’ on the Savant label and most recently “Rhapsody in Blue” on the Challenge/Twinz label. They have received wide critical acclaim throughout the world.

With Dave Valentin:
Kalahari GRP
Flute Juice GRP
Mind Time GRP
Light Struck GRP
Jungle Garden GRP
Tropic Heat GRP
Musical Portraits GRP
Live at the Blue Note GRP
Primitive Passions Tropi-jazz
Sunshower Concord
I’ve got the world on a string High Note (June 2005)

With Mongo Santamaria:
Amanecer Fanya
Mongo ala carte Fanya
Red Hot Columbia

With Emily Remler:
This is Me Justice
Tribute to Emily Remler Justice


With Charles Fambrough:
The Charmer CTI
Blues at Bradley’s CTI
City Tribes Evidence
Live @ Zanzibar Blue Random Chance

With Nnenna Freelon:
Listen Columbia

With Janet Lawson:
Janet Lawson Quartet Inner City
Janet Lawson Omni

With Bill Connors:
Return Tone Center/ESC

With Steve Hobbs:
Spring Cycle Random Chance


With Jon Lucien
Listen Love Polygram
Endless is Love Shanachie
Live in NYC Sugar Apple
A Time For Love Sugar Apple

As a leader
Searching Inner City
Love For Sale Pony Canyon
Lost Voices CTI
Signature Blue Moon Mesa
Black Sand Random Chance
Latin Jazz Fantasy Random Chance
Triple Play Savant
Rhapsody in Blue Challenge Records

Imaging America PBS
Tito Puente Documentary NBC
Fighting The Tide PBS


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Bill has been teaching jazz piano privately for the past 25 years.
He is currently offering piano lessons to the jazz enthusiasts of all levels.
In addition Bill is currently teaching at Rutgers University.
Over 100 of Bill's original compositions have been recorded by various artists and he has also composed soundtracks for television programs that have appeared on NBC and PBS

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