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Meet the Musician

Musician 1st Class Shawn P. Purcell,


MUC D. Gary Malvaso

Musician 1st Class Shawn Purcell is a native of Pittsburgh, Pa.  He graduated from Duquesne University with a Bachelor of Music in recording arts and sciences in 1993.  In 2006, Purcell earned a Master of Arts in music, with an emphasis in jazz composition and arranging, from Middle Tennessee State University, and in 2011, he completed a Doctor of Musical Arts in jazz performance with a minor in ethnomusicology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Purcell has shared the stage with many of the world’s top jazz artists:  Nicholas Payton, Tim Warfield, Terell Stafford, the Chicago Jazz Ensemble, Alan Baylock Jazz Orchestra, U.S. Army Blues jazz ensemble, the Capitol Bones, Jim Pugh, Chip McNeill, Dana Hall, Jeannie Bryson, Eddie Daniels, Bob Berg, James Moody, Jerry Bergonzi, as well as many others. Purcell has served on the faculty at Towson University, George Mason University, Middle Tennessee University, Tennessee State University, and was a visiting lecturer in jazz studies at Indiana University,  under the direction of David Baker.  As a composer/arranger, Purcell’s works have been commissioned by The Chicago Jazz Ensemble, Tito Carillo, Joan Hickey, University of Massachusetts at Amherst Chapel Jazz Ensemble, and Texas Tech University Jazz Ensemble I. 

From 1996-2004, Purcell was the guitarist in the United States Air Force’s premier jazz ensemble, the Airmen of Note.  During his nearly eight years with “The Note,” Purcell performed throughout the United States as well as overseas.  International tours included England, Germany, Turkey, the Azores, Belgium, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Italy, Kuwait and Bahrain.

In 2011, Purcell auditioned and was selected for assignment to the U.S. Naval Academy Band in Annapolis, Md.  In 2013, Purcell auditioned and was selected for assignment as guitarist with the U.S. Navy Band Commodores jazz ensemble.