|Jack DeJohnette, an Ulster County resident, was born in Chicago. In a career that spans five decades and includes collaborations with some of the most iconic figures in modern jazz, Grammy winner Jack DeJohnette has established an unchallenged reputation as one of the greatest drummers in the history of the genre. The list of creative associations throughout his career is lengthy and diverse: John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Ornette Coleman, Sonny Rollins, Thelonious Monk, Bill Evans, Stan Getz, Keith Jarrett, Chet Baker, George Benson, Stanley Turrentine, Herbie Hancock, Dave Holland, Joe Henderson, Freddie Hubbard, Betty Carter and so many more. Along the way, he has developed a versatility that allows room for hard bop, R&B, world music, avant-garde, and just about every other style to emerge in the past half-century.
Another of DeJohnette’s high-profile projects in the early 1990s was a touring quartet he led consisting of himself, Holland, Herbie Hancock and Pat Metheny, the results were then captured on the landmark recording Parallel Realities. In 1992, he released Music for a Fifth World, an album inspired by Native American culture that also included appearances by Vernon Reid and John Scofield. Given the diversity of players and styles that he had embraced by this point, DeJohnette was already describing his music in the ‘90s as “multidimensional.”
And if that weren’t enough to make for a busy year, 2005 also marked the launch of DeJohnette’s own imprint, Golden Beams Productions. His first two projects on the new label were Music from the Hearts of the Masters, a duet recording with Gambian kora player Foday Musa Suso, and a relaxation and meditation album entitled Music in the Key of Om, featuring DeJohnette on synthesizer and resonating bells. The latter recording was nominated for a Grammy in the Best New Age Album category. He closed 2005 with the release of Hybrids, a seamless weave of African jazz, reggae and dance music that featured Foday Musa Suso and an international cast
Two live recordings emerged in 2006: The Elephant Sleeps But Still Remembers (Golden Beams), which captured his first musical encounter with guitarist Bill Frisell at the Earshot Festival in Seattle in 2001; and Saudades (ECM), a 2004 London concert celebrating the music of Tony Williams. DeJohnette and Frisell reunited in the fall of 2006 – along with multi-instrumentalist Jerome Harris and mix master Ben Surman – for a tour to promote The Elephant Sleeps.
DeJohnette continued to explore African music in 2007 via the Intercontinental project, a partnership with South African singer Sibongile Khumalo that included a successful European tour and culminated in a performance at the Capetown Jazz Festival in South Africa. Other projects in 2007 included studio gigs and tour dates with Bruce Hornsby, Christian McBride, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter and Ron Carter. DeJohnette also appeared on Michael Brecker’s posthumously released Grammy Award winning final album, Pilgrimage.
DeJohnette’s Peace Time won a Grammy in 2009 for Best New Age Album. The album consists of an hour-long, continuous piece of music that eMusic described as “flights of flute, soft hand drumming, and the gently percolating chime of cymbal play, moving the piece along a river of meditative delight.” But the 2009 Grammy is just one many awards that DeJohnette has received over the years, beginning in 1979 with the French Grand Prix Disc and Charles Cros awards. He has figured prominently into readers polls and critics polls conducted by Downbeat and JazzTimes over the past two decades. He was awarded an honorary doctorate of music from Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1991, and was inducted into the Percussive Arts Society’s Hall of Fame in 2010.
In 2011, he was chosen to perform at the Kennedy Center in tribute to his longtime friend and musical inspiration, Sonny Rollins. Marking his 70s birthday in 2012, he received a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master Fellowship – the highest U.S. honor for jazz musicians – in recognition of his extraordinary life achievements, contributions to advancing the jazz art form, and for serving as a mentor for a new generation of aspiring young jazz musicians. The year-long birthday celebration included performances at the Monterey and Newport Jazz festivals, a tour of Europe with The Jack DeJohnette Group (a quintet he formed in 2010) and several concerts with Chick Corea and Stanley Clarke.
More than any awards and accolades, though, DeJohnette continues to make the creative process his highest priority. To that end, his most recent recordings are collaborations with long-time Chicago legends, Muhal Richarad Abrams, Larry Gray, Roscoe Mitchell and Henry Threadgill. A live recording from the Chicago Jazz Festival released on ECM entitled Made In Chicago. 2016 brought his first solo piano album entitled Return for the French Newvelle company and the critically acclaimed In Movement on ECM with his ensemble including Ravi Coltrane and Matthew Garrison. In 2017 Jack will celebrate his 75th Birthday with a newly formed collaborative effort called HUDSON featuring Larry Grenadier, John Medeski and John Scofield. Touring will commence in June with a newly recorded album for the Motema label.
David Sancious was born in Long Branch, New Jersey on November 30th, 1953 to Jimmie and Stelma Sancious. David’ s father was an electronics engineer and his mother a school teacher. An early interest in music was shown when at 4 years old David was able to pick out a few notes on a small plastic guitar his parents had given him, and play along to a Calypso record his father used to play frequently.Two years later when the family relocated from Asbury Park to Belmar ,N.J. , a piano was included along with the purchase of the new house. After the boxes and furniture were brought in, his mother sat at the piano and began to play beautiful classical piano selections , much to his amazement. The effect was instantaneous. Music became the most interesting and beautiful thing in the world to me, and being able to express all that beauty and magic was all I wanted.After teaching David herself for the first year, his mother made arrangements for piano lessons with a focus on classical piano repetoire.Being the youngest of three boys and having a father and mother with very different musical tastes, the house was filled with music of all genres. Everything from Mozart to James Brown on a daily basis. Early musical influences ranged from the piano preludes of Chopin and Beethoven to the music of John Coltrane and Miles Davis. Folk music , R&B , and Rock were equally influential . The folk music of Odetta and the blues styl ings of B.B. King inspired him to take up the guitar at 9 years old.I played acoustic guitar for a few years and made some progress. Then one day my brother came home with the first Jimi Hendrix album (Are You Experienced) and instantly I became very serious about the guitar.After several years of playing keyboards and guitar in Jazz , R&B, and Rock Bands on the Jersey shore area, David met Bruce Springsteen at the entrance to a club where Bruce was organizing a jam session. The result was an invitation to join a new band that Bruce was putting together. This eventually became Bruce Springtsteen & the E Street Band, and after recording three albums and touring the country, with Bruce, he left to form the group “Tone” and recorded several albums.The first recordings (Forest of Feelings) in 1975, followed by (Transformation: the Speed of Love), (True Stories), (Just as I Thought), and (The Bridge) showed David’s skills as a composer for the first time, and led to his being considered one of the most talented and sought after keyboard players in the music industry. I’ve always been inspired and motivated by the composing aspect of music, and I’ve always thought of myself as a composer who plays well , rather than a person who is just proficient on a given instrument. The recordings attracted the attention of artist the world over. Recent recordings include (“9 Piano Improvisations”), (“Cinema”), and (“Live in The Now”). Peter Gabriel , Sting , Bruce Springsteen, eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Seal and others, have used his talents as pianist, synthesist, guitarist, arranger, and producer on recording sessions and concert tours, playing an eclectic and diverse range of music.
Venezuelan born Luisito Quintero is perhaps best known for his incredible Timbale technique. He has played with some of the greatest artists of all time, including Jack DeHohnette, Tito Puente, Fela Kuti, Oscar D’Leon and Alicia Keys to name but a few! South American by birth and culturally Caribbean, Quintero is well-versed in Afro-Cuban rhythms and is adept at applying them in a diasporic context.