Paul Dunmall

Born 1953 in Welling, Kent. He is a saxophone, clarinet, bagpiper, and other wind instruments. Watson (1989) relates that Paul Dunmall was a Welling working class boy who quit school at age 15 to work at Bill Lewington’s shop on Shaftesbury Avenue in London for two years. At 17 he became a professional and after two years of touring Europe with a progressive band (Marsupilami), he joined the Divine Light Mission. This spiritual movement was led by Guru Maharaj Ji. He then moved to an American ashram. Isham (1997) told him that he moved to an ashram with many musicians, which was a music ashram but still a spiritual practice. It gave me a spiritual understanding through meditation. Coltrane’s music and all of the rest led me there. Since then, that has been a foundation in my life – that I can actually meditate without noticing my body. Although I realize how important meditation is to my life, I don’t practice it as much anymore. Dunmall spent three years in America and played with Alice Coltrane, as well as touring for twelve months with Johnny Watson. He played in England with John Stevens and Danny Thompson, as well as with folk musicians Kevin Dempsey and Martin Jenkins. In 1979, he was a founding member of Spirit Level (Tim Richards on piano, Paul Anstey on bass, and Tony Orrell on drums). He remained with the group until 1989. Dunmall was a member of the two-tenor group Tenor Tonic (1985), and played with Tony Moore (1986). He also formed the Paul Dunmall Quartet (1986), with Tony Moore, Alex Maguire and Steve Noble (1986). Paul Dunmall joined London Jazz Composers Orchestra in 1987. He was a regular member and appeared on every recording of their output since that time. Keith Tippett and Paul Rogers formed the improvising collective quartet Mujician in 1987. Tony Levin, Tony Levin, and Dunmall also joined. They have continued to perform, tour, and record regularly with their group, occasionally augmented by other musicians. Dunmall also performed in a trio with Keith Tippett and Julie Tippetts, and in Keith Tippett’s big band Tapestry. Mujician has also produced two other duos: Dunmall and Tony Levin (two CDs) and Dunmall performing folk-influenced shows with Paul Rogers. Elton Dean was a regular partner in this time and until today. Elton Dean was a regular player throughout this period. In 1995, there were two trios formed. One with Oren Marshall (tuba, Steve Noble, percussion) and the other with John Adams (guitar, Mark Sanders, and percussion). Sometimes, they would form a quintet. Dunmall, Tony Marsh, and Philip Gibbs have been playing in a reeds/guitar/drums group. There is also a regular crossover of these musicians. In 1997, the Paul Dunmall Octet was established. Paul Dunmall, a CD-R-only DUNS Limited Edition label was established in 2000. It featured many of his regular playing partners. from

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