At age 2 Jelle asked his first drumkit and he got it. Because of his enthousiasm, the poor plastic drumheads were broken after three days…Today, Jelle is an all round drummer who already worked in the music environment for about a decade now. Genres? Jazz, pop, rock, world music, classical. This began in all sorts of little bands. He graduated at the music school of Turnhout where he had lessons from Dirk Dergent, Swa Mercelis, Lieven Cambre, …
After that, he began studying at the Conservatory of Antwerp. His teachers for drums where Jan De Haas and Teun Verbruggen. At the last year of his education he had the opportunity to follow lessons with some great ‘JazzMasters’ because of a grant that the Conservatory gave him. These where: Jim Black, Ari Hoenig, Han Bennink, Dre Pallemaerts, Lieven Venken, Eric Thielemans, Herman Pardon & Pierre Tanguay.
He finished at the conservatory of The Hague, the Netherlands, in 2011 doing another master program with Eric Ineke, Joost Patocka, Stefan Krüger & Martijn Vink.
In 2012 until 2014 he studied composition at the conservatory of Brussels with Kris Defoort.
After that, in 2014-2015, he studied composition at the conservatory of Antwerp with Bert Joris.
Jelle plays with a few groups like his own band Jelle Van Giel Group, The Jacquelines, Hot Feet Collective, Christian Klinkenberg Orchestra, 8 o'clock Shadows, Cal Tjadar Project, Adam's Eve, Shakara Utd, Krema Kawa, etc. but also does a lot of freelance stuff.
He had the opportunity to work with some great musicians like Toots Thielemans, Bob Mintzer, Florian Ross, T.S. Galloway, Harvie S, Eric Vaarzon Morel, Bert Joris, Michael Rörby, Olaf Tarenskeen, Ack Van Rooyen, Eric Vaarzon Morel, Freddy Sunder, Kurt Van Herck, Nico Schepers, Frank Vaganee, Marc Godfroid, Serge Plume, Jef Neve, Frank De Ruyter, Esmé Bos, Guido Belcanto, Veerle Baetens, Raymond Van Het Groenewoud, Dimitri Leue, Tine Embrechts, Pieter Embrechts, Axl Peleman, Sergent Garcia, …
Jelle played at the Nanjing Jazz Festival, Jazz A Viènne, North Sea Jazz Festival, The Hague Jazz Festival, etc. and toured in Czech Republic, France, Iceland, UK, Romania, Hungary, etc.
Workshops and masterclasses he followed with Mark Guiliana, Gregory Hutchinson, The Monty Alexander trio, Jeff Ballard, Gene Lake, Mark Guiliana, Peter Erskine, Hein Van De Gein, Andre Ceccarelli, Thomas Lang, Andrew d’Angelo, Dave Liebmann, Steve Clover, Claudius Valk, etc.
As a composer, Jelle has released two (jazz) albums under his own name, Songs For Everyone (2015) & The Journey (2017). He is also active in the HaFaBra world where he writes compositions and arrangements for various orchestras. For the orchestra of the Belgian Navy’s 75th anniversary Jelle wrote a few arrangements of his own songs. His other hafabra compositions travel around Europe and are played in Denmark, Austria, ... He arranges for Hal Leonard, Het Geluidshuis and since 2019 he’s also active as a composer for series/film. He participated in the second season of Over Water, as assistant composer for Raf Keunen, and works with him regularly now. Through Raf he got to know Michel Bisceglia, whom he also works with occasionally as assistant.
His fundament of teaching the drums is to get the student having full control over their musical ideas and having knowledge about styles, grooves, different sticks/setups. He uses four main pillars to get the student there: hand- and leg techniques/independence, transcribing/practising solos/grooves, conscious movements, flexible automatisms.