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Sean J. Kennedy
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Artist Biography

Everything you need to know in one spot.

  • Band/Affiliation: The Sean J. Kennedy Quartet / Educator
  • Country: United States

Sean J. Kennedy is a multi-faceted musician, equally accomplished on the stage, in the recording studio, and in the classroom. He has released four critically acclaimed CDs: Road to Wailea, Outta' Here, Hey! Where's My Tux?! and Queen Anne’s Revenge (featuring Bob Mintzer and Liberty DeVitto). Due to the success of these recordings, his quartet was invited to open for Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia. Jazz legend Dave Brubeck stated that Sean’s drumming, “… sounds like it should—it swings!”

Working as a freelance drumset and percussion artist, Sean has made several appearances on NBC television and ABC’s Good Morning America live from Times Square in New York City. He has performed on drumset and percussion with The Philly POPS! Orchestra, The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, The Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, The Strauss Symphony of America, The Allentown Band, The Boston Ballet,  and has been the principal drumset player with the Philadelphia Boys Choir & Chorale since 2005, and can be heard on their CD, Celebrate the Sounds of the Season, as well as the group’s new DVD, Sing Choirs of Angels.  He has also been able to perform with some the world's leading rock, jazz and classical musicians such as Bob Mintzer, Liberty DeVitto, Richie Cannata, Will Lee, Frederick Fennell, Elizabeth Pitcairn, Gerald Veasley, Jerry Vivino, Warren Haynes, Donald Nally, Tim Price, and Eric Marienthal. 
Kennedy has also appeared on Broadway at the Beacon Theatre, with Tommy Tallarico and the Video Games Live Orchestra, and on some of the nation’s most prestigious stages, including The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, in Washington, D.C.; Avery Fischer Hall at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, in New York City; The Music Center at Strathmore, in Bethesda, Maryland;  Atlanta Symphony Hall in Atlanta, Georgia; The Electric Factory; World Cafe Live; the Kimmel Center’s Verizon Hall; The Academy of Music, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen at Disneyland. Since June 2011, one of Sean’s jazz groups, The KAV Trio, has been the official band of The Philadelphia Phillies’ pre-game show, Behind the Pinstripes with Scott Palmer, with frequent performances at Citizens Bank Park and on Phillies.com.

A sought-after composer, Sean has been commissioned on several occasions to create regional and state-level audition pieces, and has taught elementary through university-level music students throughout the United States. At home in the Philadelphia area, he is a secondary level instrumental music teacher, as well as a college-level music instructor and has taught consulted and judged marching percussion and jazz ensembles through-out the region.

Further, Kennedy has written two drumset method books with rock drumming legend Liberty DeVitto, titled Camp Jam: Rock Solid: Drums and I Used to Play Drums: An Innovative Method for Adults Returning to Play. Additionally, he has written a jazz improvisation series with famed saxophonist, Richie Cannata, titled Improvising and Soloing—In the Pocket. His latest release from Alfred Music is Sixty Second Solos an exciting introduction to solo percussion performance, already receiving glowing endorsements from the likes Dame Evelyn Glennie.

Kennedy has a B.S. in Music Education and an M.M. in Percussion Performance from West Chester University, and is an Artist Endorser for Zildjian Cymbals, Vic Firth Drumsticks, Casio Keyboards and Evans Drumheads. He is also a member of the American Federation of Musicians, and is a registered composer, songwriter, and publisher with Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI).

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