Jeff Arnal

Jeff Arnal

Musicians | Instrument: Percussion | Location: Asheville

A balletic sense of time and imaginative deployment of colour have combined into a highly original concept.

—The Wire, UK

Updated: March 21, 2023

Jeff Arnal is an American percussionist, and the Executive Director of Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC.

Since the 1990s Arnal has worked as an artist, curator, community organizer, and arts administrator. In 2002 he performed a series of duo concerts with Charles Gayle at Tonic in NYC. In 2008 his trio with John Dierker and Gordon Beeferman performed at the Vision Festival in NYC and in 2009 MEJA, his percussion duo with Michael Evans, performed live on WFMU radio in East Orange, NJ and at the Issue Project Room in Brooklyn, NY.

He co-founded Improvised and Otherwise, a multidisciplinary festival in Brooklyn, NY in 2002, and throughout the 2000s organized On the Way Out, a monthly music series at Freddy’s Bar in Brooklyn, NY. From 2012-2016, Arnal was the Senior Music and Performance Specialist at the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage in Philadelphia, PA.

As a percussionist Arnal has performed and collaborated with a wide range of musicians throughout the U.S. and Europe with appearances with Dietrich Eichmann at the Berlin Exploratorium and deSingel (Antwerp) and with Gordon Beeferman at Hallwalls (Buffalo), MATA (New York), Music Gallery (Toronto), and Roulette (New York). His collaborations with choreographers have been produced at PS 122, Joyce SoHo, Danspace Project at St.Mark's Church, Chocolate Factory, and Judson Church. His music can be heard on a number of independent labels including Clean Feed, Editions Brokenresearch, and Generate Records.

In 2021 he was interviewed by Mike Watt on the Watt from Pedro radio show, and he was a guest on the All things Cage radio show with Laura Kuhn, Executive Director of the John Cage Trust.

His latest record, Drum Major Instinct with Curt Cloninger was released on Mahakala Music in 2022. Drum Major Instinct performed at the 2022 Catalytic Sound Festival and was profiled in the Slovenian It's Psychedelic Baby Magazine.


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"A balletic sense of time and imaginative deployment of colour have combined into a highly original concept" The Wire, UK

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