3rd August 2012: Big news: Rachael Cohen debut album ‘Halftime’ set for release NOV 18th 2013



Whirlwind Recordings is very excited to announce we have signed our first female artist to our growing roster of international talent.  Rachael Cohen, originally from the Shetland Islands off the northern coast of Scotland, is an alto saxophonist and composer on the rise, with an infectious tone and an uncanny-storytelling-ability-when-improvising that defies her age.   As of late, her performances and composing skills have gained her a great deal of attention and some major awards and nominations from the UK Jazz Press & Community.  One of Rachael’s best attributes is her lyrical and controlled phrasing when improvising, which she delivers with the ease and sophistication of someone twice her age.  And her sidewoman credentials are very impressive, performing already with such notables as Joe Locke, Arild Andersen, Tommy Smith, John Hollenbeck, Donny McCaslin, Phil Robson, and Gary Versace.   Currently based in London, she regularly leads her trio and quartet projects and has been developing a program of music for her debut album which will be released on October 28th 2013.  Her confirmed quartet is an exciting cast of players with a big special guest: with regular member of her trio Jim Bashford on drums, bassist Calum Gourlay (who appears on WWR Artist George Crowley’s debut album) & special guest and WWR Artist Phil Robson on guitar, we’re very excited by the music Rachel has captured in the studio and equally excited to be involved with releasing her debut album to the world. Expect big things from Rachael in 2013.   Much more information to come, but for more info on Rachael in the time being, visit her new website here: rachaelcohenmusic.com/


Here’s Rachael’s official biography, and after that enjoy a clip of her from you tube of a recent gig in London.

IMG_0741xs(1.5)Whirlwind Recordings is proud to introduce Scottish saxophonist Rachael Cohen. Originally hailing from the Shetland Islands, Rachael began her musical education on the piano at the tender age of 4. She picked up the saxophone five years later, and quickly racked up an impressive amount of experience and accolades, kindling an early passion for playing jazz.

When she was 12, Miss Cohen’s family moved south from the Shetlands to Edinburgh, and she enrolled in the acclaimed City of Edinburgh Music School. There she studied with some of the UK’s most admired musicians, including saxophonist Martin Kershaw and pianist Lynda Cochrane. As a star member of both the National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Scotland and Tommy Smith’s Youth Jazz Orchestra, she played alongside great British and International artists such as Joe Locke, Arild Andersen, Tommy Smith, Michael Janisch, Ryan Quigley, Mark Bassy, and Mark Lockheart, and in spectacular venues like London’s Southbank Centre, the CBSO Centre Birm, Glasgow City Halls and Old Fruitmarket, The HUB Edin, Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Palace, The Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Fest, Glasgow Jazz Fest, and the now-defunct IAJE Convention in Toronoto, Ontario, Canada.
In 2006, Rachael won a scholarship to enroll in Jazz Studies at The Birmingham Conservatoire to study with Julian Siegel, Jean Toussaint, Mike Williams, Hans Koller, and the late Tony Levin. Additionally, she sought out tutelage from touring artists Dave Holland, George Garzone, Lee Konitz, Mike Gibbs, Donny McCaslin, Phil Robson, Ingrid Laubrock, and Jon Irabagon during their local engagements. She even supplied the lead alto role in John Hollenbeck’s big band project, which included the talents of New York vocalist Theo Bleckmann, and piano/organ sensation Gary Versace.
Upon commencement from Birmingham Conservatoire, Rachael immersed herself in the UK’s vast creative music scene, composing for and performing with local ensembles like Nick Jurd’s Quartet, Jonathan Silk’s Big Band, and her own Quartet and Trio. She can be heard regularly at The Yardbird Jazz Club, The Rainbow, and Symphony Hall.
Rachael is a 2012 recipient of the prestigious “Stepping Up” Birmingham Jazz Grant, awarded to assist documenting the music of her working trio since 2008. The result will be released by Whirlwind Recordings Ltd, which has become one of the fastest growing and most talked-about new imprints for creative music. Cohen is also to become the first female leader to release on Whirlwind’s impressive growing roster of international talent.