You could say that Dieter Ilg is the top acoustic bassplayer from Germany. Like no other he understands how to use all the possibilities of his instrument so as to make his skillful sound applicable in every context imaginable. He managed to bridge the gap between working on his own creative projects (taking it as far as founding his own label) while at the same time consolidating his reputation as one of the most sought after sidemen in Europe.
Born in Wolverhampton, Dave Swift was influenced by his two older brothers who both played guitar at home, motivating him to take up a musical instrument himself starting off with his brother’s acoustic and electric guitars. It wasn’t until he was 14 that he decided to take music seriously, and choose an instrument that he was really passionate about. Deciding on the trombone, he started having lessons at school, and it wasn’t long before he was playing in every concievable type of band. Shortly afterwards he and some friends formed their own band but needed a bass guitar player. Having had some experience – albeit limited to playing a bit of guitar – Dave volunteered, as he was the only one who’d had any experience with a stringed instrument…
Kevin “Brandino” Brandon is a 7 time Grammy Awarded, Producer, Composer, Arranger, and Bassist starting with the album “Singularity,”nominated Best Pop Instrumental Album of the Year 2011 by Robby Krieger of the Doors. Among other high-profile projects last year, Brandino worked on the December 14, 2010 release of MichaelJackson’s new album entitled “Michael” which is expected to be a big seller in 2011. Though based in Los Angeles, he also went to New York in November to participate in a Warwick Family Photo shoot with his friends Larry Graham and Bootsy Collins. The increasing industry demand for Brandino’s unique skills began in 2005 when the rap group OutKastwon the coveted Grammy awards for both “Album of the Year” as well as “Best Rap Album of theYear”.– An album on which Kevin performed and had the opportunity to work with producer Andre Benjamin.
Brandino has been on a non-stop flight to the top ever since, performing on the 2007Grammy nominated “Album of the Year” and “Best Pop Vocal Album” by Justin Timberlake “FutureSex/Love Sounds”, the 2006 All Star Tribute Record release for Luther Vandross on which Brandino performed on the Grammy winning song “So Amazing” by artists Beyonce and Stevie Wonder, stellar performances on the 2006 Grammy Best R&B Album of the Year “Breakthrough” by Mary J. Blige and a standout performance at the American Music Awards with Jamie Foxx.
Brandino returned to the studio to work on a variety of recording projects for such artists as: Mary J.Blige, Brandy, J1, Jamiroquai, Richard Ashcroft, Jesse McCartney, Joss Stone, Jamie Foxx, Brandinoand Friends “Live at Charlie O’s Vol 1, 2 &3”and the UNCF award show salute to Smokey Robinson,which featured an array of stars such as John Legend, Macy Gray, Joss Stone, Heather Headley, Anita Baker, Smokey Robinson, and Stevie Wonder.
Brandino also works within the television industry, and his credits include three Emmy Awards for his work in 1985, 1986 and 1992 as a composer for the daytime soap opera “Santa Barbara” and for reality shows GENE SIMMONS – FAMILY JEWELS, the Millionaire Matchmaker, Pit Boss, the Squeeze,Rehab: Party At The Hard Rock Hotel, It Only Hurts When I Laugh. Brandino is finishing up his song book series with “Brandino’s Melodies and Songbook ” Vol 2 using the Sibelius music writing software for his volumes of books for Bass, Treble, and Bass and Treble instruments combined, a collection of compositions from his three solo albums.
Brandino’s seven Grammy and three Emmy awards reflects his love and dedication to the entertainment industry.
Steve Sigmund most enjoys performing as well as his work as a contractor, copyist, producer and educator. He has toured the world performing for audiences ranging from Kings, Queens and Presidents to students everywhere around the world, from Stadiums, Concert Halls, Castles and Jazz Clubs to classrooms. His trombone playing has been acclaimed by jazz critics and audiences alike. In addition to a busy career in the South Florida area, Steve toured regularly with legend Ray Charles and his Orchestra leading the trombone section for over sixteen years including Ray’s final live performance. In addition to traveling all over the world, while at home in South Florida Steve stays very busy as the Principal/Jazz Soloist of the Florida Sunshine Pops Orchestra and the Assistant Principal/Jazz Soloist with the Palm Beach Pops Orchestra as well as performing regularly with groups all over South Florida. He also works with legendary producer/writer and arranger Mike Lewis live and in the studios as his musical contractor. Steve has just finished producing Los Angeles jazz trumpet artist Jeff Kaye’s debut release for the JazzedMedia label titled “Just Like Me” which was released in the fall 2005. It’s getting great reviews and airplay all over the country. Work has already begun for Jeff’s second CD which will be recorded in the fall in New York. His extensive performance experience includes shows performing with or accompanying such artists as Stevie Wonder, Natalie Cole, The L.A. Philharmonic, Gladys Knight, Arturo Sandoval, Tito Puente, Paquito D’Rivera, Quincy Jones, Charo, Rosemary Clooney, Randy Travis, Willie Nelson, James Ingram, Patti Austin, the Funk Brothers and Michael McDonald to name just a few. Additionally, Steve has appeared extensively on television all over the world including “The Tonite Show with Jay Leno”, PBS „Live at the Newport Jazz Festival“, „Ray on the Charles“, „Ray Charles Live in Japan“ and two most recent DVD releases “Ray Charles Live at The Montreux Jazz Festival” and “Ray Charles Live in Concert”, a spectacular show recorded live in Miami with a 55 piece symphony orchestra conducted by Grammy award winning conductor Victor Vanacore. Steve’s highly musical trombone playing has been captured on many commercial recordings, including five CDs with Ray Charles. The latest, Ray Charles “Genius and Friends”, was released in 2005. Born on August 29, 1964 in Sacramento, California, Steve was first introduced to music in middle school. His interest in the trombone came alive at a early age when he first heard the instrument in his school band. In high school, Steve began his passion for jazz music. Primarily self-taught thru high school, Steve received training after high school from Dan Marcus before studying at Cabrillo College with jazz education guru Ray Brown. Steve then moved to Los Angeles where he continued private study with Roy Main and spent most of his playing time at Bill Yeager’s L.A. Jazz Workshop. He has continued his studies over the years at the Berklee College of Music with Phil Wilson and Hal Crook and Florida International University with Art Sares. Steve has a Bachelor degree in Music from Florida International University.
Keith Loftis has been described as one of the most dynamic jazz saxophonist of today. Keith wa born in Dallas, TX where he began his study of jazz and classical music as a child. He is graduate of the nationally recognized Booker T. Washington High School of the Visual and Performing Arts in Dallas, with fellow classmate and two time Grammy award winner, Roy Hargrove. Keith received his B.A. in music from the New School for Social Research in NYC, and his Masters in Composition/Film Scoring from New York University. Over the course of his career, Keith has performed with several jazz legends such as Abdullah Ibrahim, Benny Carter, Cedar Walton, Nancy Wilson, Frank Foster, Alvin Batistean and Ray Charles on name of few. Keith has traveled extensively around the globe performing regularly throughout Europe, Asia and parts of the Mid-East. He currently performs with legendary jazz drummer, Michael Carvin; the Roy Hargrove Big Band and the Frank Foster Loud Minority Big Band. Keith has also performed at VH-1`s „Fashion Rocks“ with Mary J.Blige and Usher, and VH-1`s „Storyteller“ again with Mary J. Blidge. Keith also performs regulary at New York`s renowned hotel the Carlyle. In addition to performing live, Keith also works on filmprojects to broaden his film scoring portfolio. He has performed music in the motion picture „Three Can Play That Game“ starring Vivica A. Fox, and in the indepentend film, „Black Out“ starring Jeff Wright and Melvin Van Pebbles. Keith and his wife, actress Brigitte Barnett-Loftis reside in Brooklyn, NY.
Since moving to New York City in 2000, tenor saxophonist Wayne Escoffery has become one of the Jazz world’s most talented rising stars and in-demand sidemen. At only 32 he has recorded five CDs as a leader and been on numerous recordings as a sideman. Wayne began his professional New York career touring and recording with The Eric Reed Septet. In 2001 he became a steady member of the Mingus Big Band/Orchestra/Dynasty, The Lonnie Plaxico Group, and Abdulah Ibrahim’s Akaya. Then in 2004 Grammy award winning producer, arranger and trumpeter Don Sickler asked Wayne to be a part of Ben Riley’s Monk legacy Septet (an innovative piano-less group dedicated to carrying on the legacy of jazz great Thelonious Monk). At this time Wayne was also touring with Jazz At Lincoln Center’s Music of the Masters consisting of two groups of musicians hand picked by Wynton Marsalis. The Music of Dexter Gordon featured Wayne with Saxophonists Jimmy Greene and Gerry Welden; backed by Dexter Gordon alumni George Cables, Rufus Reid and Leroy Williams. The Music of Miles Davis featured Wayne with trumpet great Eddie Henderson and alto saxophonist Steve Wilson in the front line; backed by David Kikoski, Ed Howard and Miles Davis veteran Jimmy Cobb on drums. In 2006 Wayne secured one of the most coveted gigs in jazz: a frontline position in Tom Harrell’s working quintet. In addition to being a part of some of the last true “apprenticeship” opportunities of our era, he has delivered three studio dates as a leader on the Nagel-Heyer label Times Change in 2001, Intuition in 2004 and the most recent a collaborative project with his wife vocalist Carolyn Leonhart If Dreams Come True released September 18th 2007. In a review of the latter AllAboutJazz.com’s Senior Editor John Kelman wrote “Escoffery’s command of the instrument is impressive, able to navigate broad intervallic leaps with a sound that is robust in all registers,” Critics have also called him “[A] young, self-assured, hard-swinging tenor saxophonist.” (Ben Ratliff – The New York Times) “a skillful, musical player” (Chris Kelsey, JazzTimes) and “a thoughtful and ambitious composer” (Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr., All Music Guide). In October of 2006 Wayne signed with Savant Records, founded and run by noted record industry legend Joe Fields and his highly respected son Barney. His first CD for Savant called Veneration (released in March of 2007) was recorded live at Smoke Jazz Club in NYC and features Joe Locke on vibes, Hans Glawichnig on bass, and Lewis Nash on drums.
Started out as a classical pianist at the age of 7. First contact with Pop- and Rock-Music in his schoolband. After finishing school he studied Jazz-Piano at the Hermann-Zilcher Conservatory in Würzburg. Since then he is working as a professional live- and studio keyboarder, composer and arranger. Here are a few names he has worked with: Zirkus Sarrasani Band, Chima, Linda Carriere (3P), Don Braden (Bill Cosby Show, Winton Marsalis, Kenny Werner), Support Act for Elton John, Radost Bokel, Badesalz, Raptile feat. Valezka, Mic, Nico Suave, Fifty Fingers, Kamary Phillips, Kim Sanders (Culture Beat), Cassandra Steen (Glashaus), Sandie Wollasch (Hattler, Tap Two, 4yoursoul, Triband), Bonita (Stefan Raab SSDSGPS), Juliette („Last Unicorn“), Nadja Benaissa (No Angels), Pat Appleton (De-Phazz), Roberto Cappelluti (Late Lounge) & Jessica Schwarz (Das Parfum), Rick Washington (Commodores, Eagles, Michael MacDonald), Daniel Hall („We love to entertain you“), Tertia (Preluders), Sebastian Hämer („Sommer unseres Lebens“), James Kakande, Gabriel Gordon, Juliette Schoppmann, Faiz (Brosis), Brixx, Elli, Nicole da Silva, Mike Leon Grosch, Maya Saban, Cosmo Klein, Hartmann, 2529, Sharon Phillips, Emma Lanford, Stefanie Heinzmann …