Jan Leder is a born-and-raised New Yorker. After six years of piano and six years of classical flute study, she discovered her love for improvisation. She studied for three years with the late pianist Lennie Tristano and then continued her jazz studies with pianist Connie Crothers for over ten years. A self-styled course of study in jazz history at SUNY Purchase led to her compilation of the first comprehensive history of women in jazz entitled Women in Jazz: A Discography of Instrumentalists (Greenwood Press 1985). Ms. Leder has also enjoyed teaching jazz improvisation.
In 1999 Jan recorded Nonchalant (A-Records), a collection of mostly original melodies. The title tune was aired on CBS' "Guiding Light" in December 1999. In February 1997 Monad Records released her first CD, Passage To Freedom, which she also produced, and which features two original tunes; the title tune as well as "Lullaby for Jayda." Both CDs have received excellent reviews.
Ms. Leder leads her own jazz ensembles in the New York City area, appearing at nightclubs, festivals, cultural functions and other public and private engagements. Her repertoire includes bebop, swing, blues, bossa nova and her own unique jazz compositions. In July 2003 her group performed at the Greater Hartford Jazz Festival as the opening act for jazz greats Sonny Fortune and Chuck Loeb. In 2001 she was a featured performer at the Coleman Hawkins Neighborhood Festival in Topeka, KS.
Jan is also a member of an exciting group of jazz flutists called the NY Jazz Flutet. Fellow futists Dotti Anita Taylor, Elise Wood and Chip Shelton are joined by drummer Art Lillard in this unique ensemble featuring a wide array of standards as well as original songs and arrangements by all the members, played on a variety of flutes.