Jemeel Moondoc was born August 5, 1951 in Chicago, Illinois and studied clarinet and piano before settling on saxophone at sixteen. He became interested in jazz largely due to Cecil Taylor and at the University of Wisconsin–Madison became one of his student.
Following graduation he moved to New York City, where he founded Ensemble Muntu with William Parker, Roy Campbell, Jr., and Rashid Bakr. The group had its own Muntu record label for a time but eventually faced financial difficulties. He worked with Parker again on his 1998 album New World Pygmies.
Alto saxophonist Jemeel Moondoc, a proponent of a highly improvisational style, has recorded nineteen albums as a leader, two with the Jus Grew Orchestra, three with Denis Charles and Steve Swell and continues to compose, perform and record.
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