About Axel's Axiom

Composer and pianist Axel Schwintzer is originally from Cologne, Germany. He started playing the piano at the age of 10, focusing primarily on classical music for the first few years. But it didn't take long until he discovered his preference for Jazz and contemporary music.

He graduated with an MA from the University of Bonn, where a five-year program in political science and English had left him little time to pursue his musical endeavours. So in January 2002, he made the decision to move to Boston, MA, where he started dedicating himself to music full-time. Axel received a scholarship to study at Berklee College of Music, from which he graduated summa cum laude in 2004.

Although he never made a conscious decision to emigrate, Axel has since stayed in the United States. After another two years in Boston, during which - among other things - he worked as an accompanist for vocalists at Berklee, as sideman in Blues and wedding bands, and as private instructor for piano and German, he prepared for a move to New York City, where he has lived since 2007.

After the move, composing became a priority for Axel, and the culmination of this period was his debut album uncommon sense, published in 2010. On it, he presented ten original compositions, drawing influences from various genres. "Axel Schwintzer thrives on versatility", commented Something Else Reviews about the album - one of many enthusiastic reviews. The Jazz portal All About Jazz called the album a "profound musical statement that's hard to ignore", while Jazz Inside Magazine commented that the album has "enough complexity to keep the interest of the Jazz listener, yet [is] very accessible to any ear." uncommon sense enjoyed 12 consecutive weeks on the CMJ Jazz charts, peaking at number 2 in November 2012. Two cuts off the album were among the winners of the 2012 International Songwriting Competition (ISC), one each in the categories Instrumental and Jazz.

To interpret his music, Axel put together a group of seasoned virtuoso players based in New York, and named it Axel's Axiom. Apart from two personnel changes, this band is also featured on his latest album, anecdotal evidence, released in 2015.

Just like uncommon sense, the new album stays true to the composer's credo of mixing and balancing a variety of stylistic influences - like Jazz with Pop, Funk, Brazilian or World Music, as well as Reggae this time around. "But the result must always sound natural. If I feel that it is a forced combination, I can't continue in that direction", says Axel. In this way, completing new compositions can sometimes take a considerable amount of time for him: "In some cases, it took me two years from the first seed of an idea to a finished arrangement."

Among others, Axel has studied piano and music with Jazz guru Charlie Banacos, Richie Beirach, Kenny Werner, Laszlo Gardony, Ed Tomassi, Hal Crook, Frank Carlberg, Alain Mallet, Bruce Katz, as well as with one of his most important models, Russ Ferrante of the legendary Yellowjackets.

Axel has performed at many venues, among them the Iridium Jazz Club in New York City, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the German Embassy in Washington, DC, the Goethe-Institut in Boston, or the Union Blues in Worcester, MA. Axel has also held a weekly residency at V-Note on Manhattan's Upper East Side. Most recently, he embarked on a tour in Mexico to present the new album.