Drew Hansen is a Chicago trumpet player making a name for himself as a thoughtful composer and adventurous improviser who combines seemingly disparate influences into a cohesive musical statement.

Drew earned his degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign where he studied with Chicago trumpet luminary, Tito Carrillo, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s Charles Daval, and founding member of the Canadian Brass, Ronald Romm. Drew was a member of both the Concert Jazz Ensemble under Chip McNeil and the Latin Jazz Ensemble under Tito Carrillo.

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As a bandleader, Drew leads several ensembles of varied instrumentation. “Room Full of Chairs,” featuring Drew on trumpet, vocalist and bassist Katie Ernst, and saxophonists Artie Black and Dustin Laurenzi, is inspired by the haiku of Chicago poet, John O’Connor. Freely improvised compositions lend a soundtrack to O’Connor’s evocative poems. Drew’s quintet, the primary outlet for his more traditional compositions, alternatively features Artie Black and Katie Ernst (singing Drew’s original lyrics), alongside guitarist Sam Hasting, bassist Mike Harmon, and drummer Matt Carroll of Ohmme.


Drew’s debut album, "Stone Forest/Sun Shower," combines these various groups into one musical amalgam. The resulting record is full of lyrical compositions inspired by chamber music, haiku, free jazz, and folk music. Drew’s deep interest in harmony, texture, and melody inform the album’s rich sounds, carrying the listener from one track to the next.        

Aside from a busy career as a freelancer, Drew also maintains an active role as an educator both privately and in various schools across the Chicagoland-area, teaching brass technique, music theory, and improvisation. Drew can be reached at