Jonathan Hoel is a Madison, WI based saxophonist and composer. Comfortable in all styles of music, his true passion is musical improvisation in all it's forms. With 25+ years of study and performance, Jonathan has garnered attention and a loyal following through various projects including his jazz group the Jon Hoel Trio and his new funk project, Better Yeti.
Music was always a part of Jonathan's upbringing. His parents, though not musicians, had a deep love of music and records were always being played in the home. His grandfather was a jazz drummer who possessed a huge vinyl collection and a drum set in the basement. In high school, Jon studied sax and jazz improvisation with Anders Svanoe. He also got to spend a summer studying with jazz legend Frank Morgan. Jonathan attended college at University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point. where he studied saxophone with David Hastings and jazz theory/improvisation with Mathew Buchman. He received the John Radd Memorial Jazz Scholarship all four years of attendance as well as the Anne Schierl Fine Arts Scholarship for 2 years. Upon graduating with a degree in saxophone performance in 2005, Jon moved to Madison, WI where he quickly became an in-demand free lance artist. He started his own funk/jazz group Nuggernaut and performed under his own name as the Jon Hoel Trio/Quartet.
Jon's current projects include his trio, Nuggernaut, and Better Yeti as well as continuing his free lance work. He has been a member, performed regularly, or toured with the following acts: The Mustache, Que Flavor, Roots Collective, Vibe Syndicate, Mambo Blue, Megan Bobo & the Lux, Big Mouth Jazz Collective, Otis and the Alligators, Big Payback, Tweed Funk, Natty Nation w/ Kevin Kinsella. He has been lucky enough to share the stage with some of his idols including: John Scofield, Joe Lovano, Poncho Sanchez, Matt Wilson, and Andrew D'Angelo.
When not performing or composing, Jonathan likes to play Super Tecmo Bowl online, fantasy baseball, and other nerdy stuff. His biggest joys in life come as being a father to his son Julius and husband to his wife Katie.