NU_OPEN
You are here:Home>Artist Biographies

Artist Biographies (225)

Read about the in-depth lives of your favorite jazz musician and what inspires their music.

29.01.2011

Omar Sosa

Written by
Composer and pianist Omar Sosa was born on April 10, 1965 at Camaguey, Cuba where he spent his early years. He began his music studies at age eight with percussion and marimba at the music conservatory at Camaguey, Cuba. He was greatly influenced by jazz at an early age and influenced by the music of Thelonious Monk. A highly creative individual, Sosa forged his own unique style of composing, and playing the piano. Like American composer George Gershwin, Omar Sosa has a great respect for mel …
29.01.2011

Oskar Cartaya

Written by
Oskar Cartaya, during the course of a full career playing bass, composing, arranging and acting as musical director for an amazing array of Artists has soaked up the influences of his homes in Puerto Rico, New York and Los Angeles. Now with his debut solo release on OYE Records My Music, My Friends, My Time Oskar brings it all home. A long prolific career working with the likes of Spyro Gyra, Herb Albert, Jennifer Lopez, Celia Cruz, Rubén Blades, …
14.10.2011

Paris Toon

Written by
The resurgence of Mothers Favorite Child is upon us but not before its creator, Paris Toon, reintroduces himself and his “child” as only he can . . . through real, raw, MUSIC. The Paris Toon recording project, enigmatically titled, “Baptism by Fire,” is a portion of a life narrated by Mothers Favorite Child. MFC is and has always been a musical collective, whimsically constructed by intuition and nurtured by divine talent. This is a movement on a mission to expose truth in sounds and words. TRUTH - minor and major, raucous and romantic, soulful and . . . spiritual.
29.01.2011

Paul Hemmings

Written by
Paul Hemmings was born in Huntington Beach, California, to English immigrant parents. He began his musical training with piano lessons at age twelve and soon began learning finger-style blues guitar from his father, an accomplished guitarist in his own right. After spending his high school years playing in various rock and blues bands, Hemmings relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area to attend university. While working at a musical instrument shop Hemmings was introduced to acclaimed ava …
29.01.2011

Paulinho Garcia

Written by
Born in Belo Horizonte, capital of Minas Gerais, Brazil, Paulinho began his musical career at the age of nine as a singer in a Sunday program for kids in his city's principal radio station, Rádio Inconfidência. In his teens, he performed as a house musician in all musical programs of the Rádio Guarany--TV Itacolomy network. He led his own band, Os Agitadores, and with them recorded his first two albums. Until his arrival in the U.S. in 1979, Paulinho composed, arranged, produced, and performe …
She, like the child in Billie Holiday's "God Bless The Child", has got her own. ~ Kymyarda Croomes/Okinawa, Japan Powerful. Riveting. Sultry. Mere words can only capture the refrain of her awesome talent. Maria Howell is much more. She is the ballad of beauty and elegance. The melodies flowing from the petite vocalist are truly amazing. While casting a spellbinding smile, she mesmerizes her captive audience with incredible harmonies and rhythm …
Listening to the opening moments of Resonance, the Bop City debut of piano whirlwind Taylor Eigsti, is scary enough -- those incendiary octaves that ignite "Got a Match" into a postbop firestorm. Imagine, though, what it was like to experience this intensity first-hand when this surreally gifted player, all of ten or eleven years old, blew me off the bandstand. I remember Eigsti as an amiable kid, dark-haired and smiling, as a friend introduced us and asked if he could sit in. Getti …
29.01.2011

QB3

Written by
On any given Friday night, a tucked away bar in Manhattan's Lower East Side blares with an eclectic mix of singer/songwriter, deep house DJ and funk, all in the course of an evening. Within this particular hour, the packed house moves to danceable grooves and drum 'n bass, nods to sophisticated jazz and sways to funk and soul flavored rhythms; but it's not coming from a DJ or the night's roster of bands..it's coming from one trio: QB3. QB3 is Christopher 'Root' Heinz (drums), Fred Gerantab ( …
29.01.2011

Richard Hart

Written by
Born on November 12, 1955, Richard Hart began pursuing his destiny of becoming a contemporary fusion guitarist while growing up in the balmy ambiance of Southern California. Raised by his mother and grandmother, Hart’s upbringing was cultivated by their tutelage and encouragement which nourished his imagination and channeled his creative energies into making music. His mother was a soprano singer in the church choir and played the piano while his grandmother was a retired school teacher. They …
29.01.2011

Richard Wiggins

Written by
Richard R. Wiggins was born on October 7, 1933 in Greenwich, CT, graduating from Greenwich High School in 1952, and from RCA Institutes in 1960. He was employed by CBS News in 1964 as a sound tech for CBS Reports, and in 1968 for 60 Minutes with Harry Reasoner & Mike Wallace, retiring from CBS in 1989. His work included worldwide travel, a portable piano became an essential part of his luggage on 60 Minute trips, so he could practice in hotel rooms after work; Richard remembers "catching the pla …
29.01.2011

Rob Block

Written by
"Rob was one of the purest artists I had ever met. He lived for the music. His ability to pick up the changes to any tune almost instantly, and fit into any setting was uncanny. He had an ability to bring out the best in the musicians he worked with and ability to recognize what was good about each. He also respected the masters, and played with many of them. Ken Bleu Campbell is correct in categorizing Rob Block as one of the "New Millennium Jazz Lions."   …
Born 1974 in Kiev (Ukraine). In 1982 started to practice at music college in Kiev. In 1991 immigrated to Israel. In 1992-1996 Studied in New York under direction of Mr. Phil Woods. Based in Israel and active on a local jazz scene, he has performed with Phil Woods, Valery Ponomarev, Randy Brecker and Brian Linch. While in Europe, he has performed with some of the finest European musicians like Tony Pancella, Massimo Moriconi, Massimo Manzi, Bepi D'Amato and other coming i …
Pianist, composer and educator Roberto Verastegui (b.1988) is appearing in the international jazz scene as a young promising musician. Since he moved to Texas on a scholarship to study at the University of North Texas three years ago, he has had the opportunity to perform with musicians like Evan Weiss, Ross Pederson, Hildegunn Gjedrem, Jose Aponte, Fred Hamilton, Lynn Seaton, Tony Baker, Stockton Helbing, Shelley Carroll, Jiggs Wigham, Gregg Field, Tim Warfield, Tim Armacost, Miles Okazaki, Ing …
29.01.2011

Rocco Ventrella

Written by
A native south of Italy, Rocco Ventrella grew up in Bari. He began studying saxophone privately and after one year, enrolled into the Conservatory to study the clarinet. Immediately after the Conservatory, Rocco resumed to self-study the saxophone by also participating in various clinics of jazz music with famous musicians like David Liebman, Michael Brecker and Bob Mintzer. Rocco began to play in small jazz groups at numerous jazz clubs and at the same time he stu …
29.01.2011

Rodney Taylor

Written by
Recording artist Rodney Taylor is by far one of the most soulful saxophonists to come along in a long time. His solo CD releases on Equity Records entitled "Blow By Blow" and "Unwrapped For Christmas" are true testimonies to that fact. His resume includes such artists as Brian McKnight, Doc Powell, and Chaka Chan to name a few. Rodney also has an extensive history of working in the gospel music arena with such artists as Phil …
Born in Argentina (1978). Rodriguez arrived to Spain in 1986, where he spent most of his childhood. At an early age, he began to study modern and classical music. Between the years of 1993-1999, Rodrigo tutored at home enrolled with several teachers of classical guitar until he was 22 years old. Rodrigo's professional music career began in Spain. It was there that he discovered his first Asian instrument the Shakuhachi flute. Fascinated by Japanese music, he travelled to Japan several times to enhance his knowledge. He studied classical and traditional Japanese music under the lineages of Katsuya Yokoyama with the…
Rodrigo Rodriguez is a world music composer, producer, instrumentalist, and recording artist based in, Tokyo (Japan). He was born in 1978, Argentina. In 1988 he moved to Spain. From an early age, he started to study modern and classical guitar with different teachers in Majorca, such as Damiá Timoner (guitarist and composer). In the middle of his professional musical path, he came across the shakuhachi (a Japanese bamboo flute, used by Budhist monks in meditation practices the s …
29.01.2011

Roman Matin

Written by
Roman Matin was born in Minsk, Belarus, in 1981. His father played bass guitar in local rock bands. Roman was interested in music from his early childhood, and to his five he knew almost all European and American musical groups. His first major hobby became art-rock. Later, Roman was acquainted to the academic and jazz music. Among the favorite musicians he calls Lester Young, Art Pepper, Kenny Burrell, Wes Montgomery, Fred Frith; his favorite composers are Bartok, Stravinsky, Satie, …
29.01.2011

Ron Jackson

Written by
To say Ron Jackson is well traveled would be an understatement. He has performed and recorded in over 20 countries as a bandleader and ensemble performer, and is well established in the international jazz scene. Ron’s style of guitar playing and compositions is a blend of jazz, and other american styles such as soul, rhythm and blues, pop that is blended into his island roots of the Phillipines. His releases as a leader are, "A Guitar Thing" "Thinking of You", Muse Records"Song For Luis", Duo wi …
29.01.2011

Ron Korb

Written by
The innovative style of Ron Korb, flutist and composer of jazz and Japanese music, is garnering a buzz around the world. For example, his newly released DVD and CD, Ron Korb Live, feature a broad range of Jazz and World Music styles with the different influences seamlessly complementing each other. Ron and his band have know each other for over 20 years. They met while studying jazz at York University in Toronto. The bassist and drummer went on to study with Dave Holland and John Abercrom …