Members of the group have played venues such as Lincoln Center, The Village Vanguard, The Knitting Factory, Smalls, Smoke, Cornelia St Cafe as well as major festivals in the US and abroad.  Collectively the musicians are on over 100 CD's on such labels as: Blue Note, Polygram, Concord, Clean Feed, and many more.

Musician Bios

Zaccai Curtis (Piano) has been performing on piano since the age of five. As a high school student, he was recognized by Down Beat Magazine as a top young performer and chosen  as the pianist for the National Grammy Band Small Combo. After graduating from New England Conservatory in 2005 with a Masters degree, Zaccai moved to New York City where he performs regularly with Donald Harrison, Cindy Blackman Santana, Eddie Palmieri, Christian Scott, Ralph Peterson, T.K. Blue, Brian Lynch, Ray Vega, Eric Person, and others.

Curtis composes and arranges for his own quartet, trio, Big-Band and more. In 2003, he won the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer’s Competition and received the honor each year through 2006. The Curtis Brothers Quartet was selected by the U.S. State Department to participate in the American Music Abroad (Jazz Ambassadors) program for two tours in 2006 to places as far flung as the Maldives. He was also awarded the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism’s Artist Fellowship and recently the prestigious Doris Duke/ Chamber Music America New Works grant.

Mike DiRubbo (Saxophone)

Rising Star Downbeat Magazine 2016

“DiRubbo’s alto speaks in a distinctly powerful voice that’s at the same time modern and timeless.” Doron Orenstein, Best Saxophone

"…Mike DiRubbo has a big, bold alto tone, an unerring time feel and remarkable facility on the instrument. " Bill Milkowski, Jazz Times

“Something about the sound Mike DiRubbo elicits from the alto saxophone –deep, dark, immense, with a machete edge that denotes a ready-for-anything urban sensibility – immediately grabs the ear." Ted Panken

On his instrument DiRubbo has it all: from Benny Carter’s mastery of melody, and Johnny Hodges’ ballad mellowtones to Charlie Parker’s light-speed fluency. But what truly sets DiRubbo apart from the rest was his apprenticeship under the legendary alto saxophonist/educator Jackie McLean: the Harlem bebop whiz kid who literally grew up on Miles Davis and Charlie Parker and surged the alto saxophone toward the change of the century with his alto-centric embrace of hard and post-bop, soul jazz and the avant-garde.

Peter McEachern (Trombone) has been a major force in bringing Jazz to the area and beyond. He has produced numerous concerts and has been a teaching artist on the Litchfield Jazz Camp faculty for over 20 years.  

 

His influence has reached many young aspiring players. Peter has toured and recorded

three CDs for Polygram with Blues legend Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown; has worked and recorded with minimalist composer Lamonte Young, and is featured on "Insomnia" with the Thomas Chapin Trio on Knitting Factory Works.  McEachern’s newest CD “Bone-Code” with Mario Pavone and Michael Sarin was released on the Portuguese label Clean Feed, in November 2018. 


Peter has received fellowships from the Ct Commission on Culture and Tourism as well as the Bertkshire Taconic Foundation.

Dave Santoro (Bass) is a full Professor at Berklee College of Music.
He has appeared on over 50 jazz CD's including 6 as leader or co-leader.


He has as played, toured or recorded with: 
Red Rodney Quintet, Jerry Bergonzi, Mulgrew Miller, Joe Magnarelli, Phil Grenadier,

Tom Harrell, Bob Berg, Pepper Adams, Bruce Barth, Kenny Baron, Victor Lewis, John Abercrombie, John Scofield, Joe DiOrio, Mick Goodrick, Adam Nussbaum, Jim Odgren,

Nick Brignola, Dizzy Reece, Junior Cook, Houston Person, Terrel Stafford,  TheVillage Vanguard Orchestra any many others.

Tom Melito (Drummer) has been a mainstay on the New York City jazz scene for many years.

As a drummer, he has supported such artists as John and Bucky Pizzarelli, Frank Wess, Harry Allen, “Sweets” Edison, Lew Tabackin and has participated in numerous tours of Japan, China, Europe, and South America and made television appearances on the CBS Early Show, Entertainment Tonight and CNN World Beat. A strong advocate for jazz education, Tom plays on Jerry Bergonzi's CD play-along method and is currently recording a series of educational jazz CDs for Windplayer magazine. His recordings include Saxology with Jerry Bergonzi.

Musicians' Bios