Randal Despommier

New York-based alto saxophonist Randal Despommier “blends the suavity of Paul Desmond with the intensity of Dave Binney” (Musically Speaking). In February of 2021, Despommier, a native of New Orleans, released his first solo album Dio C'è, “impressive in his debut as leader”. (OffBeat Magazine) A melting pot of “cross-pollinated jazz” ranging from lyrical, transporting originals to imaginative reinventions of a popular Italian film ballad, the album presents “wildly ambitious, genre-mashing recordings that speak to Despommier’s wide-ranging influences.” (AllMusic)

Dio C’è, which debuted at the Soapbox Gallery in Brooklyn via livestream, introduces his new quartet as well as guest artists including Grammy-winning artist and co-producer Jimmy Haslip, renowned avant-jazz figure Ben Monder, and internationally acclaimed vocalist Aubrey Johnson. It has also been featured on Italy’s RAI, France Musique, and the Bayerischer Rundfunk.

In 2018, Despommier released and toured All At Onceness with kindred spirit Jason Yeager, “compelling” according to the Boston Globe. They performed at venues such as the Regattabar, Williamsburg Music Center, Cornelia Street Cafè, The Backroom, and the Qintai Concert Hall in China.

A passionate educator with a focus on global music, Despommier has directed the music program at Bard High School Early College (Manhattan) and taught jazz history with the Bard College Prison Initiative. Currently he teaches music theory at Third Street Music Settlement in New York City.