Carl Allen (bornApril 25, 1961 ) is an American jazz drummer.
He has worked with a wide variety of musicians, including Freddie Hubbard, Jackie McLean, George Coleman, Phil Woods, the Benny Green Trio, and Rickie Lee Jones.
It was with Green that Allen met bassist Christian McBride. The two have teamed up frequently, working for many combos of big name leaders. McBride recruited Allen for his band, Christian McBride & Inside Straight. Allen is that quintet's drummer for both its first recording Kinda' Brown and its road tours.
In 1988 Allen and Vincent Herring founded Big Apple Productions, which produced several albums featuring young jazz performers.
He joined the faculty of The Juilliard School in 2001, and became the Artistic Director of Jazz Studies in 2008. He was replaced as director by Wynton Marsalis in 2013, and left Juilliard at the end of the academic year.
In 2011, Allen appeared in the HBO series Tremé as himself for two episodes in a studio recording scene in New York.
in 2014, he formed his own group, The Art of Elvin to pay tribute to Art Blakey and Elvin Jones. The band debuted at the Percussive Arts Society (PAS) conference in Indianapolis, with Allen on drums, Freddie Hendrix (trumpet), Tivon Pennicott (tenor sax), Xavier Davis (piano), Yasushi Nakamura (bass).