American jazz pianist and co-founder of the Strata-East Records label. He played with Roland Kirk while studying at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and later with Marion Brown, Max Roach, Bobby Hutcherson, Clifford Jordan, Harold Land, Sonny Rollins and Stan Getz. Cowell played with trumpeter Charles Moore and others in the Detroit Artist's Workshop Jazz Ensemble in 1965-66. During the late 1980s Cowell was part of a regular quartet led by J.J. Johnson. Cowell teaches in the Music Department of the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.