Born in Hartford, Connecticut, Sean Clapis began studying jazz guitar at the Academy of the Performing Arts High School in Hartford and at the Artist’s collective, founded by Jackie McLean, under the tutelage of major jazz figures like Paul Brown and Jimmy Greene. In the summer of 2005, he was invited by the Center for Creative Youth to attend and perform at the “National Festival da Juventude” on the African island nation of Cape Verde. Upon receiving a generous scholarship from the Hartford Jazz Society in 2005, Sean earned his Bachelor’s in Music at the prestigious Hartt School of Music at the University of Hartford. He graduated in 2009, training with notable masters such as Rene McLean, Rich Goldstein, Steve Davis, Andy LaVerne, Joe Diorio and many others.
Over the next two years, he taught guitar and jazz theory at the Academy while performing frequently on the local music scene. While living in Connecticut, he participated in the Hartford International Jazz Festival, the Hartford Jazz Festival at Bushnell Park and the Silk City Arts Festival. In 2011, he moved to Brooklyn, where he began performing with “Carte Blanche”, a unique revivalist jazz ensemble performing music from the 20s and 30s from around the world. He has also performed with the Spanish rock group “Tulsa” as well as with Alan Palmer’s “New Soil Band”.
Leading his own projects as well as being a frequent sideman, he has performed extensively around the country and internationally at clubs, performance halls, festivals, and for royalty and heads of state. He currently resides in New York and performs regularly.