Full biographies coming soon!
Boasting a warm, finely burnished tone and a robust melodic and harmonic imagination, tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander has been exploring new musical worlds from the outset.
In 2004, Eric signed an exclusive contract with the New York-based independent jazz label, HighNote Records where he has amassed a considerable discography of critically-acclaimed recordings. Most recent among them is Chicago Fire, The Battle with Vincent Herring and Mike LeDonne, and It's all in the Game with Harold Mabern.
Using New York City as his home base he can been seen frequently at all of the legendary venues including ongoing appearances at Smoke, and continues to tour the world over to capacity audiences.
"He is the most impressive guitarist I've heard. He plays the best of them all for swing, logic, feel and taste."
- JIM HALL
Peter Bernstein has played on over 80 recordings and countless festival, concert and club performances around the world with musicians from all generations.
His first break was while attending the New School after meeting the legendary guitarist Jim Hall. Hall asked him to participate in his Invitational Concert as part of the 1990 JVC Jazz Festival along with others including John Scofield and Pat Metheny. The concert was released as Live at Town Hall Vol. 2. Soon after, he was discovered by Lou Donaldson, becoming a regular member of his group throughout the 1990s and recording 4 albums.
Peter was also a member of Joshua Redman's band, toured with Diana Krall's quartet, and Dr. Lonnie Smith in the late ‘90s. He's appeared in groups led by Nicholas Payton, Sonny Rollins, Lee Konitz, Tom Harrell, and Eric Alexander.
Peter has enjoyed long musical associations with legendary drummer Jimmy Cobb, as well as organist Larry Goldings and drummer Bill Stewart. The New York Times has called them "the best organ trio of the last decade."
"Everything the trio plays is colored with a pronounced individuality. The harmonic depth, intense rhythm and subtle interaction they employ mesmerizes an audience."
One of the world's most prolific and influential jazz bassists over the past four decades, David Friesen has recorded over 65 CD's as a leader and appeared as a sideman or featured artist on more than 100 recordings. He has performed and / or recorded with many of the great names and legends of jazz including: Stan Getz, Dexter Gordon, Joe Henderson, Sam Rivers, Michael Brecker, Bud Shank, Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Shaw, Freddy Hubbard, Art Farmer, Clark Terry, Joe Venuti, Mal Waldron, Jaki Byard, Kenny Drew Sr., Chick Corea, Milt Jackson, Slim Gaillard, John Scofield, Philly Joe Jones, Elvin Jones, Paul Motian, Jack Dejohnette, Airto Moreira, and many others. He's toured constantly since the '70s, performing in concert as a soloist and with his own groups throughout the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, The Netherlands, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, Turkey, Poland, Japan, Australia and South America.
Dapper, refined, 77-year-old Overton Berry is a Seattle treasure, a dazzling jazz pianist with a resonant baritone and gentlemanly manner seldom seen in these parts—or this era. After graduating from Garfield High in 1949, teenaged Berry played up and down the famed Jackson Street jazz scene. In the ‘70s, his regular trio gigs at Tukwila's Doubletree Inn brought him (and the fledgling hotel chain) national acclaim. Berry later toured the U.S. and played extended residencies in China and Hong Kong. More recently, Light in the Attic reissued his At Seattle's Doubletree Inn and The Overton Berry Experience albums on vinyl, and he's been a fixture at the Sorrento Hotel's Fireside Room, a gregarious entertainer in one of the city's most elegant lounges. (City Arts)
Over the course of his eminent career, Michael has written, produced and played on albums that have sold millions of copies worldwide. As the original drummer for Santana, Michael – at age nineteen – was the youngest performer at Woodstock. Michael's recording credits include the masters of popular and avant-garde music – Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones, George Harrison, Pete Townsend, Steve Winwood, Police guitarist Andy Summers, film composer Mark Isham, and such musical luminaries as John Mclaughlin, Stomu Yamash'ta, Klaus Schulze, Freddie Hubbard, Jaco Pastorius, Wayne Horvitz, Bill Frisell, Zakir Hussain, Airto Moriera and Amon Tobin. Michael continues to strive for innovative approaches to percussion-based music, and records with both renowned and emerging artists (Skerik, Jack DeJohnette, Zakir Hussain, Reggie Watts), in addition to his own band, Spellbinder. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998 and in 2005, Michael received the Guitar Center's first annual "Lifetime Achievement Award."
New York trombonist, composer and arranger Doug Beavers was catapulted to international musical significance when he was discovered by 9-time Grammy winner Eddie Palmieri and called on to transcribe and arrange the complete repertoire from his seminal La Perfecta group of the 1960s. Beavers went on to tour, record and perform with Eddie as lead trombonist and arranger, winning a Grammy for his 2005 release, Listen Here.
Beavers has since established his own solo career, becoming universally recognized as a cutting-edge trombonist and "an arranger of the first-class" (Harvey Siders, JazzTimes). He has performed and arranged for the likes of Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Eddie Palmieri, Rosemary Clooney, Gilberto Santa Rosa, Don Omar, Sheila E., Pete Escovedo, Mingus Big Band, Ruben Blades, Paul Simon, and countless others. In addition to receiving several orchestral commissions for arranging and composition, he has released three solo projects, the most recent entitled Two Shades of Nude (Origin), which was scored for a jazz nonet.
New York City-based Saxophonist Roxy Coss has become one of the most unique and innovative voices of her generation. The 2014 Downbeat Critics Poll named her a "Rising Star" on Soprano Saxophone. She has performed in countries including Spain, Denmark, Italy, Germany, France, Malta, Scotland, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and Belgium; as well as throughout Canada and the United States.
A native of Seattle, WA, Roxy began playing piano and composing at the age of 6, and began studying saxophone at age 9. She also won her first award at age 9, placing third in the city-wide "Reflections" composition contest. She began studying Jazz with Robert Knatt at Washington Middle School, and went on to be First Tenor Saxophone in the Internationally recognized Garfield High School Jazz Ensemble led by Clarence Acox. In 2008, she graduated Magna Cum Laude from William Paterson University in NJ with a Bachelor of Music Degree in Jazz Studies/Performance. There she studied saxophone with Gary Smulyan and Rich Perry, and composition with Rich DeRosa. She also studied privately with David Demsey, Armen Donelian and Bill Mobley. Coss also had the opportunity to work closely with Clark Terry, Harold Mabern, and Mulgrew Miller.
"...a retro air that hints at the silken sophistication and storytelling elan of the young Nancy Wilson..." - JazzTimesTwo-time winner of Earshot Golden Ear Awards "Northwest Vocalist of the Year," Gail's rich, warm vocals and understated phrasing have been described as "deliciously soulful" by Cadence Magazine. Gail's two releases, "May I Come In?," (OA2), and "Here in the Moment," (OA2) were widely and warmly embraced by radio and jazz fans around the world, with "Here..." ending up being the most played, new female vocal CD on American jazz radio in 2010. As artist-in-residence at the Amersfoort Jazz Festival in the Netherlands in 2006, she was featured artist with the New Manhattan Big Band on the mainstage. Included on that tour was a stop in Kobe, Japan to perform as the winner of the Seattle-Kobe Female Jazz Vocalist Competition.
Jerry Hahn is one of the most celebrated jazz guitarists of his generation. Raised in Wichita, Jerry moved to San Francisco at 21 where he joined the John Handy Quintet, recording two albums for Columbia Records including the acclaimed "Live at Monterey." In 1967 he recorded his first solo album, "Jerry Hahn & His Quintet," with Jack DeJohnette on drums and soon after joined the Gary Burton Quartet with Roy Haynes and Steve Swallow, recording three albums and touring the world.
In 1970, he signed a deal with Columbia Records for his newly formed "Jerry Hahn Brotherhood." In his book "The Jazz Book," Joachim Berendt noted the Brotherhood as being one of the "trailblazers of rock-jazz integration."
Other highlights include recording Paul Simon's first solo album, "Paul Simon," and touring and recording with drummer Ginger Baker's band.
Jerry received his Doctorate from Berean Christian College and developed jazz guitar programs while teaching at Wichita State University, Colorado Institute of the Arts and Portland State University. His formidable book and CD "Complete Jerry Hahn Method for Jazz Guitar" for Mel Bay Publications has been in publication since 1986.
Michael Zilber, whom jazz legend Dave Liebman calls "one of the best composers and players around anywhere, period!" was born and raised in Vancouver, Canada. He moved to Boston in his late teens and to New York City in his early twenties. He has performed and/or recorded with Dizzy Gillespie, Steve Smith, Sonny Stitt, Liebman, Miroslav Vitous, Bob Berg, Eddie Henderson, Fareed Haque, Geoff Keezer, Donald Harrison, John Handy, Dave Douglas, Rachel Z, James Genus, Rodney Holmes, John Stowell and Barry Finnerty, among many others.
Gavin Templeton is a Los Angeles based saxophonist, woodwind player and composer. He has been recognized as "a pivotal force in the L.A. progressive jazz scene" (Glenn Astarita, All About Jazz) for both his personal contributions to new music as well as his collaborations with a variety of internationally recognized performers and composers. Templeton has recorded and/or performed alongside Nels Cline (Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists), avant-garde jazz legend Vinny Golia, and Grammy nominated big band leader Alan Ferber among many others. As a solo artist and composer, Templeton has released three different albums over the last three years to critical acclaim, and, as a performer, Templeton is quickly becoming an in-demand concert artist. He performed as a featured artist at the 2014 Angel City Jazz Festival and at the 2014 Monterey Jazz Festival with the Daniel Rosenboom Quintet.
The musical delicacy and vivaciousness of pianist/composer Dawn Clement has been heard in some of the world's most premier venues including Carnegie Hall, Le Conservatoire Superieur in Paris, and Seattle's Benaroya Hall, as well as numerous clubs (including Sweet Rhythm and Tonic), art museums, and theaters. Dawn has also toured the U.S. with a number of projects including the Sabella Consort (2000-2003), the Rubin/Clement Piano Dialogues (2000-2002), for which she received a King County Arts Commission Grant (2002), and Jane Ira Bloom.
Dawn's sound has been heard extensively on the radio. She has had interviews and live performances on Seattle's KEXP (Sonarchy Radio), KBCS (The Don and Bud Show) and KUOW (The Beat), and her music regularly receives radio play around the world. She has also been featured in articles for 5/4 magazine, All About Jazz (NY and Italy), Earshot Jazz (Seattle), Jazz Times, and Hot House. Dawn is currently on the faculty of Cornish College of the Arts and maintains a rigorous performance schedule.
Tenor Saxophonist Lucas Pino works frequently as a sideman for artists including Gideon van Gelder, Richard Boukas, David Lopato, Bryan Carter, Rafal Sarnecki, Nick Finzer, and Jeremy Siskind. His past performance experience also includes Dave Brubeck, Curtis Fuller, Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, Christian McBride, Carl Allen, Benny Green and David Sanborn. Lucas has traveled to play in Australia, Poland, Spain, Britain, The Netherlands, Brazil, Costa Rica, as well as throughout the United States and Canada. He has appeared at venues such as the Blue Note, Dizzy's, The Jazz Standard, Yoshi's, The Jazz Kitchen, The Rex, and Chicago Symphony Hall. As a leader, he has maintained a monthly residency at Smalls with the No Net Nonet since March 2013.
Originally from Phoenix, Arizona, Lucas grew up singing hymns in church, and in the choir at school. He started playing saxophone at age 10, and the first music he ever listened to was jazz. As a high school junior, Lucas won the Downbeat award for Best Instrumental Soloist in 2004. He attended the Brubeck Institute from 2005-2007, where he studied closely with Dave Brubeck. Lucas finished his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Jazz Performance at The New School in 2009. He attended Juilliard from 2009-2011, where he received a Master of Music.
Singing along to a karaoke machine on a dare is not the way most aspiring singers begin their career; however, this is how jazz singer Sarah Partridge got her start. While enjoying a successful and busy career as an actress, Partridge went to the Improv in Los Angeles with friends, to enjoy a night out. A karaoke contest began and her chums urged her to participate, just for fun. Partridge, a jazz enthusiast, reluctantly agreed and eventually found an "elevators only" version of "Summertime." Her beautiful, rich voice captivated an L.A. booker, who assumed that she was a professional jazz singer. Before she could say "help" she found herself billed as the featured vocalist in a live jazz salute. This was not an easy accomplishment considering that she knew only ten songs all the way through. Yet, she was a smashing success and hasn't taken a backward step from that evening on.
A native of the Pacific Northwest, saxophonist Kareem Kandi is a performer, composer, and educator, who is in high demand for his talents both on and off the stage.
Growing up in the northwest with its vibrant music scene allowed Kandi the opportunity to study with, listen to and perform with world class jazz artists residing in the area. Artists such as Tracy Knoop, Jay Thomas, Don Lanphere, Bill Ramsay, Hadley Caliman, Julian Priester and many others had a large impact on Kareem early in his musical education. This direction and guidance continues to inspire and lead Kandi as he continues his lifelong passion undertaking a career as a professional musician.
Today, as a performing artist he spends most of his time leading his group The Kareem Kandi Band for which he composes and arranges most of the music. The band is constantly on the move as a sought after performing group and spends most of its time performing in and around the Pacific Northwest. When not leading his own group Kareem can be seen and heard performing as a sideman with many other top notch musical acts and projects, most notably The Paperboys from Vancouver BC.
Ted Brancato is a musician with four decades of experience in the music business. Since his early days, growing up in Seattle, WA, Ted has been actively performing, composing, arranging and recording music. Ted earned his bachelors degree in music from the University of Washington. While in Seattle Ted quickly became one of the most "in demand" pianists, both in the recording studio and in the jazz clubs. Ted was called on to accompany many jazz headliners that came through town--jazz greats such as Milt Jackson, Eddie Jefferson, Ernie Watts and Ernestine Anderson.
In the almost 30 years that Ted has worked in and around NYC, he has honed his skills as an arranger, composer, performer, conductor, and accompanist. He played on recordings by Houston Person and a Roger Kellaway recording that was produced by Creed Taylor and recorded by Rudy Van Gelder in his historic Englewood, NJ studio. He served as musical director for jazz vocalist Jeanie Bryson--touring the world with her and arranging and playing on three of her albums. Alongside Ms. Bryson, Ted worked closely with many great jazz players such as Christian McBride, Jerry Niewood, Pacquito D'Rivera and trumpeters Claudio Roditi and Wallace Roney. While Ms. Bryson's musical director, Ted performed in Brazil, Japan, Greece, the Netherlands, and toured the United States. Other touring experience includes two USIA sponsored trips to West Africa with jazz vocalist Dee Daniels. Ted also kept his Seattle connection alive over the years, arranging and playing on two recordings by vocalist Kelly Harland, and collaborating with singer/songwriter Mark Pearson (longtime member of the Brothers Four) on numerous recording projects and live concert tours in the Pacific Northwest. For the past 11 years, Ted has utilized his arranging and conducting skills as musical director of a dinner theater in New Jersey.
With a performance history spanning almost two decades, Pearl Django endures as one of the most highly regarded Hot Club style groups working today. Although the band’s roots are firmly in the music made famous by Django Reinhardt and Stephan Grappelli, its extensive repertoire includes traditional jazz classics and original compositions. Pearl Django has performed at festivals, dances and nightspots throughout the U.S. and abroad. They have played at the prestigious Festival Django Reinhardt in Samois sur Seine and have been featured on NPR’s “All Things Considered.” The band’s signature style is marked by pristine and dexterous string work, colors of Bal Musette, the steady pulse of rhythm guitar and an unmistakable swing that delights audiences of all musical sensibilities. Throughout the years, Pearl Django has cultivated a devoted and enthusiastic following and they continue to play to packed houses wherever they perform.
Biography coming soon ...
A Seattle-area native, Peter Daniel is a quickly-rising, contemporary saxophonist & accomplished improviser. His experience and professionalism have made him a first-call for area bands, and his quartet is becoming one of the Northwest's go-to groups for clubs and festivals. Peter's group performs an exciting mix of standards and originals.
One of the primary voices in Northwest Jazz for over 30 years, drummer John Bishop has performed in concerts and clubs with Bobby McFerrin, Lee Konitz, Slide Hampton, Benny Golson, George Cables, Kenny Werner, Sonny Fortune, Bobby Hutcherson, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Tom Harrell, Herb Ellis, Buddy DeFranco, Larry Coryell, Joanne Brackeen, Jon Faddis, Charles McPherson, Carla Bley, Steve Swallow, Kenny Rankin, Joe Locke, Hal Galper, Jessica Williams, and countless others. Along with numerous jingle, film-score, demo & multi-media recording sessions, he's appeared on more than 100 albums including sessions involving Rudy Van Gelder & Teo Macero, and a Grammy-nominated recording on RCA with singer Mark Murphy. Bishop was inducted into the Seattle Jazz Hall of Fame in 2008.
Matt Jorgensen is a drummer, producer, composer and arranger who has built an impressive resume as one of the most in-demand jazz musicians on the west coast. He has released five CDs under his own name and is also a co-leader of the group Human Spirit. As a sideman he is frequently called on by an impressive list of musicians including Dr. Lonnie Smith, Eric Alexander, Bill Mays, Stanley Jordan, Corey Christiansen, Thomas Marriott, Ray Vega, Peter Bernstein, Vincent Herring, Bobby Shew, Mike LeDonne, George Colligan, Reggie Workman, Tim Ries, Chuck Leavell and others.
Seattle jazz icon Jay Thomas is a versatile multi-instrumentalist (trumpet, flugelhorn, alto, tenor, soprano and flutes) whose music leans to earthy and lyrical; the blues and swing always in evidence. With the Cantaloupes, Jay goes back to the sixties and the neo-boogaloo / hard bop feel of Horace Silver, Herbie Hancock, Cannonball Adderly, and Ramsay Lewis. The band connects with people on a visceral level and encourages people to MOVE.
Jay Thomas - trumpet/saxes; John Hansen - piano; Chuck Kistler - bass; Adam Kessler - drums
Born In Minneapolis, Jeff Johnson ("Free" to some of his colleagues) left at age 20, spending time in Philadelphia and New York, and has worked with a veritable who's who of great jazz musicians such as Philly Joe Jones, Charlie Rouse, Barney Kessel, Chet Baker, Lew Tabackin, Eddie Daniels, Mark Murphy, Joanne Brackeen, Julian Priester, Jay Clayton, Marlena Shaw, Billy Hart, Annie Ross, George Cables, Bud Shank, Claudio Roditti, Ernestine Anderson, and Michael Wolfe, to name just a few.
Jeff met Jessica Williams in Seattle in 1991 and Hal Galper at the Port Townsend Festival in 1993, great pianists with whom he has had ongoing musical relationships. He is one of the most on-call working musicians in the competitive Seattle musical arena, and his contribution to jazz is substantial and continuing.
He now leads various small ensembles, composes, goes on the road frequently, and is involved in numerous projects and recording dates around the world.
Istvan Rez, a Hungarian rambler, recently joined forces with Farko Dosumov, an Uzbek who won the green-card lottery,to create an original sound like none other. Istvan plays an acoustic nylon-string guitar, Farko plays a five-string electric bass. Together they produce a unique flamenco sound that includes many influences such as funk and world music to jazz
Seattle-based alto saxophonist, composer, and winner of the 2014 Earshot Northwest Emerging Artist of the Year, Jacob Zimmerman is an extremely versatile and integral part of the local creative-music community. Jacob studied music at the internationally renowned Garfield High School, the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, and Mills College in Oakland. His teachers have included Roscoe Mitchell, Jerry Bergonzi, Joe Morris and Anthony Coleman.
The Jacob Zimmerman Quintet will be per- forming classic bebop music from the 40s and 50s while featuring some of Seattle’s best up- and-coming jazz talent.
Phil Sparks is among the leading bassists in Seattle, having performed with nearly every top jazz group in the city. He records extensively with many of the Northwest's top names, and received a special mention as a star of the Seattle scene in the Feb. 94 issue of Down Beat.
Phil Sparks has been a member of groups led by Julian Priester, Ernestine Anderson, Hadley Caliman, Matt Jorgensen, Wayne Horowitz, Floyd Standifer, Hadley Caliman, E.W. Wainwright, Jay Clayton, Jim Knapp, and Ricky Kelly. He has accompanied the following artists during Northwest engagements: Gene Harris, Roland Hanna, James Moody, Bobby Shew, Mose Allison, Art Lande, Joe Henderson, Javon Jackson, Teddy Edwards, and the Seattle Symphony.
Known for his innovative spirit and broad musical scope, Thomas performs on the stages of the world's greatest jazz clubs and concert halls, as a leader and alongside the top names in jazz. The Seattle native is featured on more than 100 recordings with musicians of all genres. Since 2004, Thomas has produced nine albums as a leader for Origin Records. Three of his albums have made the top-ten on national jazz radio airplay charts, including the 2009 release "East-West Trumpet Summit," which made it all the way to number one. His albums have been featured on NPR's "Morning Edition" and have gained critical acclaim world-wide, including "Constraints and Liberations" which garnered a 4 1/2 star review in Downbeat Magazine.
Chris Icasiano is quickly establishing himself as a force in Seattle's new music and avant-garge jazz scene. He performs regularly in the co-led duo Bad Luck with long-time friend and collaborator, saxophonist Neil Welch, which was recently awarded the 2009 Alternative Jazz Group of the Year by Earshot Jazz. Bad Luck's self-titled debut album was received with much critical acclaim and has been described as, "...one of the finest Seattle Jazz recordings in years - fresh, assured, mature way beyond it's players' ages." (Peter Monaghan, Earshot Jazz). Icasiano is also a member of the progressive avant-jazz group Speak, which features many of Seattle's most forward-looking, innovative, and creative musicians, focusing predominantly on original composition and collective improvisation. Speak's debut record is slated for release in April 2010 by Origin Records in time for their appearance at the Saalfelden Jazz Festival in Austria this Summer.
"John Stowell plays jazz, but he doesn't use any of the cliches; he has an incredible originality. John is a master creator."
- LARRY CORYELL
John Stowell began his successful career with guitar lessons in his native Connecticut from guitarist Linc Chamberlind, and from John Mehegan, pianist and respected jazz educator at the Juilliard School of Music and Yale University. Several years later he met noted bassist David Friesen in NYC and launched a critically acclaimed touring and recording association that lasted 7 years, included 6 albums, and performances in Europe, Canada, USA and Australia. During that time, John also moved to Oregon. Paul Horn, John, David Friesen and Robin Horn were invited to perform in the Soviet Union. It was the first time in 40 years that American jazz musicians had been invited to play public performances in Russia, paving the way for many others to follow. John Stowell is an in-demand teacher and clinician of jazz guitar. He has taught at the country's most prestigious schools of music, and frequently is invited to present "Artist in Residence" series.
The Ballard Jazz Festival now has 501(c)(3) Non-Profit status as an associated program of Shunpike.
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