Carl Kennedy is a Chicago-based pianist and composer who has built a diverse musical career crossing between jazz, soul, fusion, folk and classical traditions. Drawing from his well-rounded skill set, Carl is sought-after for his emotionally expressive playing and original compositions. He has played venues all over the country including the John F. Kennedy Center for The Performing Arts, The Millennium Park Jay Pritzker Pavilion, South By Southwest Music Festival, Summerfest, and countless others.
Carl has been the leader of the Carl Kennedy Trio and Carl Kennedy Large Ensemble. These projects feature all original music and have performed regularly in Chicago since 2013. The Carl Kennedy Trio’s debut album, American Lullaby, will be released in 2019. In this project, Kennedy teams up with bassist Daniel Thatcher and drummer Andrew Green to bring a chamber music aesthetic to the traditional jazz piano trio. As a sideman, Carl has been a member of Bassel & The Supernaturals, Jonas Friddle and The Majority, Paul Dietrich Jazz Ensemble, Spocket and many others.
Carl received a Bachelor of Music in Theory/Composition with a Jazz Emphasis from Lawrence University and a Master of Music in Jazz Composition in from The DePaul School of Music. In addition to teaching privately, Carl is on the jazz faculty at St. Xavier University and co-leads the jazz program at Thomas Kelly High School in Chicago.
Carl can also be heard every Sunday as the collaborative pianist at Second Unitarian of Chicago.