About New London Big Band

By day, Nelson is enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard, where he plays trombone with the Coast Guard Band’s concert band and jazz ensembles, serves as staff arranger, and is music director for both the Beacons Jazz Ensemble and the Guardians Big Band. Sean also serves as jazz trombone instructor at the University of Connecticut.

As an arranger and composer, Sean worked on the production team for the 2015 National Christmas Tree Lighting, creating several arrangements for guests including Andra Day, Kelsea Ballerini, and Tori Kelly. This program was formed for the Obama family and heard nationally on PBS. Sean composed the official song for the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration officer corps (one of the eight federal uniformed services), sung by all recruits at basic officer training as well as other official events. He won the National Band Association Young Composers Jazz Composition Contest and is a two time winner of Downbeat Magazine’s Student Jazz Arranging Contest. He currently works as ther arranger for Sam Houston State University’s Bearkat Marching Band, writing new shows each season. Sean’s big band arrangements are published at iJazzmusic.com

A native of Dallas, Texas, Sean received a Bachelor of Music degree from San Houston State University, studying trombone with Henry Howey, and a Master of Music degree from the University of North Texas, studying trombone with Tony Baker and jazz arranging with Paris Rutherford and Rich DeRosa. While at North Texas, he was trombonist and composer for the One O’Clock Lab Band and sang with the Jazz singers I. Sean’s trombone quartet won the International Trombone Association Quartet Contest, and he was honorable mention in the ITA’s Frank Smith Solo Competition.

“We’re thrilled to be invited back to the 2024 Branford Jazz Series and to be part of such a community-oriented event. Branford Jazz allows New London Big Band to share the joy we find in making music- it’s one of our favorite shows to do, “said Nelson.


New London Big Band