Jazz pianist and composer Nelda Swiggett has been active on Seattle’s music scene since the early 90’s. Her first band, the Room to Move Sextet, featured a three-horn frontline, including her husband, Clif Swiggett, on trombone. She has since headlined her own group performing her original music at many of the Northwest’s top jazz venues, including Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley, Bumbershoot, the Earshot Jazz Festival, and more.
Nelda is an award-winning composer and OA2 recording artist. Her five CD recordings have received extensive airplay around the globe. Nelda’s melodic originals draw from a long list of influences, from jazz to Afro-Cuban, to gospel, classical and more. In 1998, her talent for composition was recognized by an Artist Trust Fellowship funded by the Washington State Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2015, Nelda won the Seattle Women’s Jazz Orchestra’s international Jazz Composition Contest for Women Composers, and her big band chart, “Cat Dreams,” debuted at Seattle’s 2015 Earshot Jazz Festival. Nelda’s big band arrangements have been performed by Seattle’s nationally recognized Garfield High School Jazz Band I, the Seattle Women’s Jazz Orchestra (SWOJO), and others.