b. England. Playing piano from an early age, Noble studied music at Oxford University and also undertook a postgraduate course at the Guildhall, London. Soon thereafter, Noble joined Stan Sulzmann, playing in the latter’s duo and in his two-piano quartet alongside John Taylor who had recommended him to the leader. Subsequently, he played in bands led by Harry Beckett, John Stevens, Anita Wardell and Tim Whitehead. He also recorded and toured with Moondog. He attracted critical attention when he recorded 1998’s solo Close Your Eyes, featuring free improvisations as well as his own compositions. In the late 90s, Noble was a member of a quartet led by Bobby Wellins, and also played as a member of the Christine Tobin Band and in Randy Brecker’s English Sextet. With drummer Paul Clarvis he has played in duo, performing music from West Side Story and also what the pair term ‘stream of consciousness’ improvisations. Noble also formed his own group for touring and eventually for recording; this band featured saxophonists Chris Biscoe and Sulzmann, with Mick Hutton, bass, and Clarvis.
Other musicians with whom Noble has worked are Lol Coxhill, Julian Siegel, Steve Waterman, and Kenny Wheeler. A 2002 project was a commission from Birmingham Jazz, a song cycle based upon Japanese death poetry, in which he was teamed with vocalists Kelsey Michael and Tobin, and instrumentalists Dave Wickins and Biscoe. In addition to piano, Noble also plays keyboards and samples, displaying a growing interest in electronic music and sounds. Highly individual, original and thoughtful, but also witty, Noble’s playing and composing vividly demonstrate a musician of great technical ability.