People / Al Neil

Musician, composer, artist, writer. Al (Alan Douglas) Neil was born in 1924. He was a student of Glenn Nelson and Jean Coulthard. As a jazz pianist, however, he was largely self-taught. He began playing bebop in Vancouver clubs in the late 1940s, as both sideman and leader. A central figure at the Cellar, a musician-operated Vancouver club, Neil accompanied musicians like Carl Fontana, Art Pepper, and Sonny Red. After a brief period of inactivity, Neil returned to music in 1965 with a trio featuring Richard Anstey on bass and Gregg Simpson on drums. It was at this time that his performance style underwent a remarkable change, becoming freer and more idiosyncratic. Neil is also an author and visual artist. His novel Changes was published in 1975 by Coach House, and he has had a solo exhibition at the Vancouver Art Gallery, West Coast Lokas (1972).

Related Archive Items
  1. 01. Beach Assemblage, Dollarton
    Al Neil (Assemblage)
  2. 02. Assemblage from West Coast Lokas
    Al Neil (Assemblage)
  3. 03. Peking
    Al Neil (Assemblage)
  4. 04. Baby McLuhan (detail)
    Al Neil (Assemblage)
  5. 05. Euclid
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  6. 06. Al Neil on front deck, Dollarton, BC
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  7. 07. Al Neil reading
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  8. 08. Al Neil in Buffalo Man Costume
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  9. 09. Buffalo Man
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  10. 10. Al Neil in Buffalo Man Costume, Cates Park, North Vancouver
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  11. 11. Al Neil on Rememberance Day, 1991
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  12. 12. Al Neil performing "Krapps Last Tape," Coburg Gallery, Vancouver
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  13. 13. Origins - Celtic series
    Al Neil (Assemblage)
  14. 14. Artaud series
    Al Neil (Collage)
  15. 15. Rene Daumal Portrait series
    Al Neil (Collage)
  16. 16. Correspondence series
    Al Neil (Collage)
  17. 17. Auto Bio series
    Al Neil (Collage)
  18. 18. Evidence series
    Al Neil (Collage)
  19. 19. "What is a Piano" from a performance at The Western Front
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  20. 20. Al Neil and Sam Perry at the Sound Gallery
    Jack Dale, Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Sam Perry (Photograph)
  21. 21. Through the Eyes of Tomorrow: Intermedia
    Werner Aellen, Gerry Gilbert, Helen Goodwin, Al Neil, and Dennis Vance (Film)
  22. 22. Birds, Lions, Dog, Improvisation/Fucking Excercises
    Al Neil and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  23. 23. Chums
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  24. 24. Water Babies
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  25. 25. Rock Drill (For Antoine Pevsner)
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  26. 26. Space Object Box (For Joseph Cornell)
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  27. 27. Voices Breathing
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  28. 28. Auld Lang Syne (excerpt)
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  29. 29. Standing Still Untitled Improvisation
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  30. 30. Love Loka
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  31. 31. Money Lenders
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  32. 32. Blue Voodoo Glue
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  33. 33. Dog Space
    Richard Anstey, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Audio)
  34. 34. Solar
    Al Neil (Audio)
  35. 35. Round Midnight
    Al Neil (Audio)
  36. 36. Al Neil reading at the Vancouver Art Gallery
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  37. 37. Al Neil reading at the Vancouver Art Gallery
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  38. 38. Al Neil concert at Intermedia Nights
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Dennis Vance (Photograph)
  39. 39. Al Neil concert at Intermedia Nights
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  40. 40. Al Neil concert at Intermedia Nights
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  41. 41. Al Neil performing at Chromatic Steps
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  42. 42. Al Neil performing at Chromatic Steps
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  43. 43. Intermedia CBC television special
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Photograph)
  44. 44. Al Neil Christmas concert
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  45. 45. Al Neil Christmas concert
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  46. 46. The Al Neil Trio rehearsing at Intermedia
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  47. 47. The Al Neil Trio rehearsing at Intermedia
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Photograph)
  48. 48. Video screening at Intermedia
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Photograph)
  49. 49. Video screening at Intermedia
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Henry Rappaport (Photograph)
  50. 50. The Al Neil Trio performing at the Magic Colonial Theater
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  51. 51. Al Neil on front deck, Dollarton, BC
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  52. 52. Al Neil reading
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  53. 53. Al Neil in Buffalo Man Costume
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  54. 54. Al Neil in Buffalo Man Costume, Cates Park, North Vancouver
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  55. 55. Al Neil on Rememberance Day, 1991
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  56. 56. Al Neil performing "Krapps Last Tape," Coburg Gallery, Vancouver
    Al Neil (Photograph)
  57. 57. Judith Schwarz at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Judith Schwarz (Photograph)
  58. 58. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  59. 59. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  60. 60. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  61. 61. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  62. 62. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  63. 63. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  64. 64. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  65. 65. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  66. 66. Audience members at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  67. 67. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  68. 68. Audience members at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  69. 69. Composer Gerry Walker (second from left) at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Gerry Walker (Photograph)
  70. 70. The Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  71. 71. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  72. 72. Audience members at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  73. 73. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  74. 74. WECO dancer Rita Watson performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Rita Watson (Photograph)
  75. 75. WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  76. 76. WECO dancers at the Motion Studio in 1966
    Jack Dale and Rita Watson (Photograph)
  77. 77. WECO dancers at the Motion Studio, Judith Schwarz at right
    Jack Dale and Judith Schwarz (Photograph)
  78. 78. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  79. 79. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  1. 80. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  2. 81. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  3. 82. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  4. 83. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  5. 84. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  6. 85. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  7. 86. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  8. 87. A WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  9. 88. A WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  10. 89. A WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  11. 90. A WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  12. 91. A WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  13. 92. WECO dancer Judith Schwarz at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Judith Schwarz (Photograph)
  14. 93. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  15. 94. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  16. 95. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  17. 96. A motion study by the WECO dancers at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  18. 97. WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  19. 98. WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  20. 99. WECO dancer Heather McCallum performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Heather McCallum (Photograph)
  21. 100. WECO dancer Rita Watson performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Rita Watson (Photograph)
  22. 101. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  23. 102. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  24. 103. A performance by WECO at the Motion Studio, Judith Schwarz pictured lower right
    Jack Dale and Judith Schwarz (Photograph)
  25. 104. A performance by WECO at the Motion Studio, Heather MaCallum pictured at top
    Jack Dale and Heather McCallum (Photograph)
  26. 105. A performance by WECO at the Motion Studio, Rita Watson pictured at lower left
    Jack Dale and Rita Watson (Photograph)
  27. 106. WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  28. 107. WECO dancer performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  29. 108. WECO dancer Heather McCallum performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Heather McCallum (Photograph)
  30. 109. Audience member at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  31. 110. Audience members dancing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  32. 111. Dancer Heather McCallum performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale and Heather McCallum (Photograph)
  33. 112. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  34. 113. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  35. 114. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  36. 115. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio, Karen Jamieson pictured at right
    Jack Dale and Karen Jamieson (Photograph)
  37. 116. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  38. 117. Audience members at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  39. 118. Audience members at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  40. 119. Audience members at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  41. 120. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  42. 121. Audience members at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  43. 122. Audience members at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  44. 123. WECO dancers performing at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  45. 124. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  46. 125. Event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  47. 126. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  48. 127. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  49. 128. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  50. 129. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  51. 130. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  52. 131. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  53. 132. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  54. 133. Audience member at an event at the Motion Studio
    Jack Dale (Photograph)
  55. 134. Al Neil and Sam Perry at the Sound Gallery
    Jack Dale, Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Sam Perry (Photograph)
  56. 135. Laughing
    Richard Anstey (Audio)
  57. 136. Al Neil reading at the Vancouver Art Gallery
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  58. 137. Al Neil reading at the Vancouver Art Gallery
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  59. 138. Al Neil concert at Intermedia Nights
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Dennis Vance (Photograph)
  60. 139. Al Neil concert at Intermedia Nights
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  61. 140. Al Neil concert at Intermedia Nights
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  62. 141. Al Neil performing at Chromatic Steps
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  63. 142. Al Neil performing at Chromatic Steps
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  64. 143. Al Neil Christmas concert
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  65. 144. Al Neil Christmas concert
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  66. 145. The Al Neil Trio rehearsing at Intermedia
    Gregg Simpson (Photograph)
  67. 146. The Al Neil Trio rehearsing at Intermedia
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  68. 147. The Al Neil Trio rehearsing at Intermedia
    Michael de Courcy, Al Neil, and Gregg Simpson (Photograph)
  69. 148. The Al Neil Trio performing at the Magic Colonial Theater
    Werner Aellen, Michael de Courcy, and Dennis Vance (Photograph)
  70. 149. The Al Neil Trio performing at the Magic Colonial Theater
    Bob "Box" Arnold, Michael de Courcy, Gary Lee-Nova, Gregg Simpson, and Dennis Vance (Photograph)
  71. 150. The Al Neil Trio performing at the Magic Colonial Theater
    Michael de Courcy and Al Neil (Photograph)
  72. 151. The Al Neil Trio performing at the Colonial Magic Theater
    Michael de Courcy (Photograph)
  73. 152. Al Neil Trio performing at the Dome Show
    Michael de Courcy (Photograph)
  74. 153. The Al Neil Trio Marquee
    Michael de Courcy (Photograph)
  75. 154. Al Neil Trio performing at the Dome Show
    Michael de Courcy (Photograph)
  76. 155. Al Neil Trio performing at the Dome Show
    Michael de Courcy (Photograph)
  77. 156. Al Neil Trio performing at the Dome Show
    Michael de Courcy (Photograph)
  78. 157. Many Faces of Al
     (Photograph)
  79. 158. Al Neil / A Portrait
    David Rimmer (Film)