Multi-Grammy Award winning composer Maria Schneider has been referred to as "one of America’s leading composers". Maria Schneider’s music has been hailed by critics as “evocative, majestic, magical, heartstoppingly gorgeous, and beyond categorization.” She and her orchestra became widely known starting in 1994 when they released their first recording, 'Evanescence.' With that recording, Schneider began to develop her personal way of writing for her 17-member collective, tailoring her compositions to distinctly highlight the unique voices of the group. Subsequently, the Maria Schneider Orchestra has performed at festivals and concert halls worldwide. She herself has received numerous commissions and guest conducting invites, working with over 85 groups from over 30 countries spanning Europe, South America, Australia, Asia and North America.
“To call Schneider the most important woman in jazz is missing the point … She is a major composer–period.”
Nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for composing the orchestral work An American Concerto, he has won two GRAMMYs for his jazz arrangements, four Emmys for his television music, an Oscar nomination for film composition, and the Richard Kirk Award from BMI.
Williams has scored more than 200 films, including Breaking Away, which received a 1978 Oscar nomination; All of Me, Swing Shift, Cuba, Casey's Shadow, and The Grass Harp. For television, his music has graced such classics as Columbo, Lou Grant, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Streets of San Francisco, and The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd. In addition to his 4 Emmys, he has received 23 nominations.
Several of Williams' recordings are considered contemporary big-band standards, including Threshold, which won a 1974 GRAMMY; Too Hip for the Room, a GRAMMY nominee in 1983; Tenth Avenue, a double GRAMMY nominee in 1987; and Sinatraland, a tribute to the singer which was GRAMMY-nominated in 1998. Williams has received 16 GRAMMY nominations for his compositions and arrangements.
NEA Jazzmaster Jim Hall (1930-2013) influenced an entire generation of Jazz musicians and is considered by many to be one of the greatest ever Jazz guitarists. From his early work with Jimmy Guiffre and Chico Hamilton to his now legendary collaborations with Sonny Rollins, Paul Desmond, Ron Carter and Art Farmer, Hall was a major figure in the legacy of American music.
Grammy-Winning And Oscar-Nominated singer/songwriter Siedah Garrett is perhaps best known for co-writing Michael Jackson’s hit song “Man In The Mirror” and her legendary duet performances on Michael's "Bad" tour. Across her remarkable pop music career, Siedah has collaborated and worked with giants such as Quincy Jones, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, Miles Davis, Al Jarreau, and Sergio Mendes. She has written songs that have been performed and/or recorded by Jennifer Hudson, Jamie Foxx, Sarah Vaughn, Sheena Easton, Patti Austin, Chaka Khan, Natalie Cole, Roberta Flack, Dionne Warwick, The Korrs, Barry White, Paula Abdul, will.i.am, Jordin Sparks, Vanessa Williams, Richard Elliot, The Freemasons, The Brand New Heavies, and Amy Grant, to name a few. She has supplied backup vocals for Donna Summer, Madonna, Wang Chung, The Commodores, Weather Report, Boz Scaggs, Santana, Johnny Mathis, and Jessica Simpson. Siedah's film soundtrack credits are quite extensive, including the Oscar-nominated "Love You, I Do" from Dreamgirls, and four songs in the 2011 blockbuster animate film Rio, for which she also achieved a second Oscar nomination with the Sergio Mendes collaboration, "Real In Rio". Her duet with ex-Temptations member Dennis Edwards, Don't Look Any Further, is a classic R&B smash. She has also appeared in numerous television, feature film, and voiceover roles, and performed globally for televised audiences in the millions.
Originally founded in 1977 and The Clayton Brothers continue to share a common musical vision.
John Clayton is a Grammy winning bassist/composer/arranger/conductor and has written and arranged music for Milt Jackson, Nancy Wilson, Ray Brown, Regina Carter, McCoy Tyner, Carmen McRae, Quincy Jones, Diana Krall, Kurt Elling, Dee Dee Bridgewater Gladys Knight, Natalie Cole, Michael Buble' and many others.
Jeff Clayton has recorded with Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight, Kenny Rogers, Michael Jackson, Patti Labelle, Earth Wind & Fire, and solo'd on Madonna's recording "Back in Business". As a jazz musician, he has worked with Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Ella Fitzgerald, Woody Harmon, Lionel Hampton, Lena Horne, McCoy Toner, Dee Dee Bridgewater and many others.
Currently, the quintet consists of John's son, Gerald Clayton on piano (also Grammy© nominated for his 2009 CD “Two Shade”, for Best Instrumental Composition, “Battle Circle” from The Clayton Brothers’ “The New Song and Dance” CD and in 2011 for Best Jazz Instrumental Album for “Bond: The Paris Sessions”) .
Alexander Nathan Skolnick (born September 29, 1968), is an American jazz and metal guitarist who heads the jazz band Alex Skolnick Trio and is the lead guitarist of the Bay Area thrash metal band Testament. He is considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time as well as one of the fastest guitarists in the world.
Doug Beavers has established himself as cutting-edge studio trombonist and as a world-renowned producer, composer, and arranger. Winning a Grammy for his work with Eddie Palmieri in 2006 on Listen Here! and working with the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Doug has become known for his attention to detail and his exceptional musicianship.
Nine-time Grammy Winner Eddie Palmieri first took notice of Doug as his reputation rose in New York. While working with Eddie, Doug was asked to re-arrange music from the 1960's ensemble, "La Perfecta". Eddie developed a new project, “La Perfecta II”, where Doug became lead trombonist and arranger. This allowed Doug to work with some of the best in Latin Jazz, such as Dave Valentin, Brian Lynch, Mario Rivera and John Rodriguez, Jr.
Since then, Doug has been recognized as one of today’s leading musicians. In addition to the Spanish Harlem Orchestra and Eddie Palmieri, he has worked with the, Rosemary Clooney, Don Omar, Sheila E., Pete Escovedo, Mingus Big Band, and countless others.
Doug’s ArtistShare project, Titanes del Trombón, shares his artistic vision and pays homage to greats of both jazz and Afro-Cuban idioms. The project features musicians that are at the forefront of these idioms today, including Oscar Hernandez, Edsel Gomez, Luisito Quintero, Luques Curtis, and more.
The Kentucky-born, New Orleans-schooled, New York-based pianist/composer Jon Cowherd is best known for his long-running partnership with drummer/bandleader Brian Blade, with whom he co-founded the Brian Blade Fellowship, whose acclaimed, influential albums showcase Jon's keyboard work and compositions. When not recording and touring with the Fellowship, Cowherd has worked extensively with a broad array of players, singers, and ensembles from the jazz, pop, classical, and rock worlds including Cassandra Wilson's band, Rosanne Cash, Lizz Wright, Iggy Pop, Marc Cohn, Mark Olson and Victoria Williams, Daniel Lanois, Joni Mitchell, John Leventhal, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Dave Easley, Delfeayo Marsalis, Jeff Parker, Marcus Strickland, Jack Wilkins, the New Orleans Ballet, and the New Orleans Symphony and Opera. As a producer, Cowherd has overseen albums by Lizz Wright, Alyssa Graham and The Local NYC.
Modern saxophone titans Michael Brecker, Dave Liebman and Joe Lovano first assembled Saxophone Summit in the mid-1990s.
Their goal was to stretch the limits of jazz by continuing in the path originally paved by saxophonist John Coltrane. Critics at JazzTimes called their debut album, Gathering of Spirits (2004) “ridiculously good,” and Amazon.com said
that the album invoked “the collective vision and apocalyptic energies
of John Coltrane’s 1960s meetings with… Eric Dolphy and Pharoah Sanders …”
After Brecker's untimely passing in 2007, the ensemble continued on with Ravi Coltrane joining in Brecker's place.
Copenhagen-born Danish-Vietnamese composer/pianist Niels Lan Doky has recorded more than 30 albums as a leader and has worked with many artists including Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, Joe Henderson, Gary Peacock, Jack DeJohnette, Ray Brown, Randy and Michael Brecker, David Sanborn, Al Foster, Billy Hart, John Scofield, John Abercrombie, Bill Evans, Bob Berg, Tom Harrell, Ray Drummond, Al Jarreau, Charlie Haden, Gino Vannelli, Thad Jones, and others. Niels is a "melodic player with a deep and enlightening touch" -Michel Contat (Telerama, France).
Trombonist and current SFJAZZ Collective member Robin Eubanks has an impressive list of performance credits, including Slide Hampton, Sun Ra, Stevie Wonder, Art Blakey, Bobby Previte, Steve Turre, Dave Holland, Eric Harland, Mark Turner, Avishai Cohen, Miguel Zenón, Stefon Harris, Edward Simon, Matt Penman, The Tonight Show Band, and the Saturday Night Live band. Robin teaches at the New England Conservatory in Boston, Oberlin Conservatory in Ohio, and New York University. Robin comes from a music family which includes his brothers guitarist Kevin Eubanks and trumpeter Duane Eubanks.
Fabian Almazan is an award-winning Cuban-born American pianist and composer based in New York City. Fabian is a graduate of the New World School of the Arts High School in Miami, FL, the Brubeck Institute, and the the Manhattan School of Music. Fabian received the Cintas Foundation 2010/11 Brandon Fradd Award in Music Composition, and he was selected to participate in the Sundance Composers’ Lab in 2011. Fabian has been a touring member of the Terence Blanchard Group for a number of years, and he has also worked with artists such as Gretchen Parlato, Paquito D'Rivera, Christian Scott, Chris Dingman, David Sanchez, Stefon Harris, Kendrick Scott, and Ambrose Akinmusire among others.
We are pleased to welcome Emmy Award winning composer Alf Clausen to the ArtistShare family. As a composer for television and film, Clausen has penned the music for such classics as "The Simpsons", "Moonlighting," "ALF" (no relation), and "Half Baked". In addition to his television and film work he has composed music for the bands of Buddy Rich, Thad Jones & Mel Lewis, Ray Charles, Woody Herman, and Stan Kenton. Through his long and distinguished career, Clausen has garnered two Emmy awards, twenty seven Emmy nominations, four Annie awards, Grammy and CLIO nominations, and Honorary Doctorates from the Berklee College of Music and North Dakota State University. Now partnering with ArtistShare, Clausen is excited about sharing his musical activities worldwide with fans old and new.
Grammy® nominated composer/trombonist Bob Brookmeyer (1929-2011) was named as one the National Endowment for the Arts' 2006 Jazz Masters. He was best known for his writing, especially his arrangements for
big bands, which at their best captured the spirit of past masters like
Duke Ellington and Count Basie while remaining thoroughly contemporary.
His charts in the 1960s for Mulligan’s Concert Jazz Band and the Thad
Jones-Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra helped invigorate the big-band genre at a
time when many critics considered it moribund. ArtistShare was fortunate enough to have recorded and released two monumental recordings by this Jazz master. Bob passed away on December 15, 2011 and will be greatly missed by us all.
An accomplished leader and seasoned sideman performing with the likes of legends Wayne Shorter, Steve Lacy, and Roy Haynes, Pianist Danilo Perez brings his unique Pan-American jazz to the ArtistShare community with his latest project.
His trio is hitting the road again and participants will receive access to downloadable and streaming live performances, interviews, tour journals, exclusive online lessons, and downloadable sheet music.
Born in Chicago on New Year’s Day 1971, Chris Potter took up the alto sax at the age of ten and played on his first jazz gig at the age of 13. His education took him to New York City’s New School and Manhattan School of Music. Graduating from Manhattan in 1993, Potter began a long series of sideman activities with top names like the Mingus Big Band, Paul Motion, Ray Brown, Jim Hall, James Moody, Dave Douglas, Mike Mainieri and many more. Although he’s performed extensively with the incredible bassist/composer Dave Holland’s various ensembles, Potter has been performing all over the world with his own groups since the release of Gratitude early 2001. Multi-reedman/composer Chris Potter is often cited by critics, musicians, and a steadily increasing number of fans as the finest saxophonist of his generation.
Grammy nominated multi-instrumentalist, Gonzalo Grau, has established himself through performances with Venezuelan music projects like Maroa, Schola Cantorum de Venezuela, Camerata de Caracas and the Simón Bolivar National Youth Orchestra, jazz icon Maria Schneider and the Latin jazz giant Timbalaye. As a music director he leads two projects of his own, "Plural" (Latin jazz-Flamenco-Venezuelan fusion) and "La Clave Secreta" (salsa fusion), which was nominated for the 2008 Grammys in the Best Tropical Album category. As a recording artist, Grau has participated in over eighty productions that bridge both classical and popular music worlds.
His most recent productions include the studio recording of Golijov's La Pasión Según San Marcos (winner of the ECHO award 2010), the album "México" of Rolando Villazón (winner of the ECHO award 2011), and Nazareno with pianists Katia and Marielle Labeque. He has also produced a performance of West Side Story with the Labeque sisters (winner of the Choc the Classica).
As a composer he has collaborated with the legendary Osvaldo Golijov for the opera Ainadamar and La Pasion Segun San Marcos. His original works include "Nazareno," commissioned by pianists Katia & Marielle Labeque and the oratorio, "Aqua," commissioned by the Bach Academy International, winner of the European Composer Award 2011, an award given by the Young Euro Classic Festival in Berlin.
When Julian Lage emerged on the music scene 13 years ago, the young San Francisco Bay Area-based musician was not only deemed a guitar-playing prodigy, but he was also offered record deals on numerous occasions. Playing a unique style that melded blues, classical, folk and jazz influences, Lage decided to wait for the right moment to document his own music. He chooses instead to become a sideman with established instrumentalists like Gary Burton and to collaborate with contemporaries such as pianist Taylor Eigsti. Along the way, Lage received recognition from musical luminaries, including Herbie Hancock and Béla Fleck, and patiently waited until he was ready to go into a studio with a band of like-minded players to realize his own musical vision.
Billy Childs was born in Los Angeles on March 8th,1957 to Joseph and Mable Childs. At age six, he was enrolled in piano lessons by his parents, both fervent music lovers. The younger Childs developed rapidly, and at age sixteen entered the Community School of the Performing Arts, a preparatory music program sponsored by the University of Southern California. Although the initial focus of his energies had been piano performance, he was so inspired by the teachings of his theory professor, Marienne Uzsler, that he shifted his attention to composition.
"This is the end of the century, and a lot of music has gone down," Brian Lynch said several years ago. "I think that to be a straight-ahead jazz musician now means drawing on a wider variety of things than 30 or 40 years ago. Not to play a little bit of this or a little bit of that, but to blend everything together into something that sounds good. It doesn't sound like pastiche or shifting styles; it's people with a lot of knowledge."
Donny continues to make regular appearances with his band, often at New york City's 55 Bar club. Various sidemen on the gig include guitarists Ben Monder and Adam Rogers, drummers Antonio Sanchez, Gene Jackson, Clarence Penn, Dan Weiss, and Eric Mcpherson; bassists Ben Street, Hans Glawisnig and James Genus; and pianists Jon Cowherd and George Colligan. Donny will also be leading a band at the Islay Jazz Festival in Scotland this year.
Some of his performing credits include Pat Metheny, Gary Burton, Steps Ahead, Brian Blade, John Pattitucci, Billy Hart, Bebel Gilberto, Eddie Gomez, Alexander Sipiagin, New York Voices, Gil Evans Orchestra, Mingus Big Band, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra. He's also loaned tenor work to solo recordings by fellow Lan Xang bandmates Scott Colley and Dave Binney.
Donny has also been playing with the great Brazilian duo Flora Purim and Airto Moreira, soul-jazz singer Monday Michuru and drummer George Schuller's "Circle Wide" with Ingrid Jensen.
Praise for Geoffrey's artistry comes from all sides. Time magazine wrote that Geoffrey possesses "a refreshingly open-eared sensibility in the modern manner, and he has more than enough virtuosity and sheer musical wit and intelligence to weave all of his apparently disparate strands of influence into an original and compelling whole." His peers speak glowingly about his artistry as well. Hawaiian guitarist, Keola Beamer reflects "Geoffrey has a beautiful, spatial style that I immediately fell in love with the first time we played together in San Francisco." His fans also echo their admiration for his artistry. Surf to any online CD shop and read the glowing reviews of his releases submitted by purchasers worldwide.Geoffrey's newest release, Wildcrafted, captures the fire and raw energy of Geoffrey’s trio, live in concert at the Dakota Jazz Club in Minneapolis. Geoffreys’ unlimited potential as a composer, arranger, and musician are all on showcase. Wildcrafted features five fresh original pieces, nestled in with finely polished and newly arranged Jazz chestnuts, a celestial Okinawan work of art, and even a new arrangement of a composition by pop singer, Björk. Geoffrey Keezer continues to be in high demand, as an artist: performing, composing and arranging. He works worldwide doing commissioned works, recording projects, performances and cross cultural collaborations.
From her early days playing in the subways of New York, to establishing herself as a leader and soloist in a wide array of musical genres, trumpeter Ingrid Jensen has garnered rave reviews and a strong reputation among critics and peers as an adventurous, loving, and always remarkable musical spirit. Now, only on ArtistShare, participants can join Ingrid on her newest project “Inside Passages,” and experience the creation of new compositions – from start to finish – through compositional sketches, interviews, audio lecture/demonstrations, rehearsal recordings, and journals.
Jazz trumpeter and composer Alex Sipiagin hails from Yaroslavl, Russia and got his advanced musical training at the Gnessin Music Institute and Conservatory. After competing at the 1990 Thelonius Monk Trumpet Competition, where he placed 4th amongst players such as Nicolas Payton, Ryan Kaiser and Scott Wendholt, Sipiagin moved to New York in 1991. His talent was quickly recognized by others, and Sipiagin soon began playing in various groups such as the Gil Evans Orchestra and the Zebra Coast Band headed by award winning composer/arranger Gil Goldstein. He became a regular member in groups such as the George Gruntz Concert Jazz Band, Mingus Big Band (and later Mingus Dynasty and Mingus Orchestra), Dave Holland Big Band (and various small groups), Michael Brecker's Quindectet, the latter two winning Grammy's in 2003, 2004 and 2006. He has also performed with Eric Clapton, Dr. John, Aaron Neville and Elvis Costello, with recent recordings with Michael Franks and Dave Sanborn. Sipiagin regularly tours worldwide both as a soloist and sideman for various groups.
Raised in Delaware, Kate was schooled in Boston, both at Harvard’s English department, where she studied the influence of jazz on modern poetry, and at Berklee, where she studied jazz guitar. Now living in Toronto, she is carving out a niche as a writer and performer of new jazz standards. Her persuasive arrangements and melodies show a deep involvement with the history of jazz.
Kate plays a Novax 8-string, the instrument made famous by Charlie Hunter. And she is at home, with her high and dry voice, singing jazz tainted both with a bit of the blues and with pop gestures and attitudes. Her new artistShare project, No Love Lost, is currently topping the jazz charts in Canada.
Born in 1963 in Los Angeles, California, Scott Colley began studying bass at age 11. In 1984 he was granted a full scholarship to the California Institute for the Arts, where he focused on composition and jazz studies while also studying privately with Charlie Haden and classical bassist Fred Tinsley, of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. After graduation, he began touring and recording with Carmen McRae, and has worked since then with numerous jazz luminaries. For the past 3 years, Colley has toured extensively as a member of Herbie Hancock’s working trio.
"Jon is one of the greatest alto players ever"-Phil Woods
A native New Yorker, saxophonist and composer Jon Gordon was born into a musical family and began playing at age ten.
In November of 1996, Jon won the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition. Judges for this important event were Wayne Shorter, Jackie McLean, Joe Lovano, Jimmy Heath and Joshua Redman.
Recent N.Y. appearances include stints at the Blue Note, Birdland, , Iridum, Smalls, the Jazz Standard, Jazz in July at the 92nd Street Y, the JVC Jazz Festival, the Village Vanguard, Fat Cat, And The Charlie Parker Festival.
Pianist/Composer Kevin Hays has performed and recorded with some of the most prominent and influential musicians in Jazz. These include Sonny Rollins, John Scofield, Benny Golson, Roy Haynes, Joshua Redman, Freddie Hubbard, Al Foster, Joe Henderson, Buster Williams, Chris Potter and Art Farmer. Hays has recorded 8 CDs as a leader and is featured on dozens of recordings as a sideman.
"He's all-encompassing; phenomenally so!"
-John Scofield/Universal Recording Artist
Torben Waldorff, born in Denmark, is based in the Oresund region of Malmo, Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark.
Technically proficient and musically intuitive in his guitar brilliance, Torben Waldorff possesses an imagination formed by numerous influences - and one that shapes a variety of moods. As a guitarist he employs the full range of his instrument, concentrating on lyric delivery with passion. He is an economically refined player who understands how to play virtuoso with colors, dynamics and the dramaturgy of a director. His exchanges with Donny McCaslin constitute beautiful duels with intuitive interplay, elegance and excitement.
The group’s music is composed predominantly by Torben with traditional, avant-garde and free jazz elements along with reminders of the eased song structures of Eric Clapton. Their musical empathy and cohesion was heralded by Jazz Improv Magazine: “Each performance is completely in the moment as they respond to each others ideas.”
Together they form a trans-Atlantic jazz that brings together New Yorkean brilliance and natural play with the sensibilities of Scandinavia: matured timeless aesthetics, a deep sense of intelligent and skillful spacing and perspective, which the Danes are also known for in architecture, design, and form. Torben Waldorff is building bridges between America and Scandinavia.
Soprano saxophonist/composer Jane Ira Bloom has been steadfastly developing her unique voice on the soprano saxophone for over 25 years. A pioneer in the use of live electronics and movement in jazz, as well as the possessor of "one of the most gorgeous tones and hauntingly lyrical ballad conceptions of any soprano saxophonist
Manhattan-born and raised Rachel Nicolazzo (aka Rachel Z) had music practically ingrained in her genetic code. Groomed to follow in her mother's operatic footsteps, she began voice lessons at two, started classical piano lessons at seven and attended the opera by age nine. "My first dollhouse was a Metropolitan Opera House complete with the stage and dolls which were the performers," she recalls. "Then I heard Miles Smiles when I was 15, started rebelling against the classical by improvising, and played with a band that covered Joni Mitchell and Steely Dan songs."