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.
Josh Evans, Guest Performer (Trumpet)
By the age of 14, Evans’ musical career began to take shape when he started to study with and be mentored by the celebrated alto saxophonist/composer and educator, Jackie McLean. Studying under McLean who shared the bandstand with Miles Davis, Charlie Parker and Art Blakey, would be pivotal in Josh's career. The experience would blaze the path for performances with Jackie McLean which included New York-based venues known as the Blue Note, Iridium, the Regattabar located in Boston and the Bushnell Center for Performing Arts in Hartford.
In April 2005, Josh began a three-and-a-half-year stint with the Winard Harper Sextet, touring the United States performing and conducting master classes. At different points, members of the group consisted of Billy Taylor, Frank Wess and George Cables, as well as trumpet players Terrell Stafford, Claudio Roditi and Phillip Harper. In April 2007, Josh was invited to perform a two-week tour of Siberia with master saxophonist and composer Benny Golson. It was during this time period that Evans would also start performing with master drummer Rashied Ali and would become the band’s trumpet player for the next two years. The Rashied Ali Quintet toured 18 different countries and recorded the CD Live in Europe. Josh Evans played with Rashied Ali until the drummer’s untimely death in 2009.
Evans has performed in the bands of Jackie McLean, Cedar Walton, Rashied Ali, Oliver Lake, Benny Golson, Freddie Redd, Billy Harper, Charles Tolliver…. and many more.
Larry Ham (Keyboard)
Larry began his professional career in the Lionel Hampton Orchestra in the late 1980’s. He was pianist in the Illinois Jacquet Big Band in 1990-95 and has worked extensively with countless other jazz legends, including the late Junior Cook and Dakota Staton. He has appeared at jazz festivals, concerts and nightclubs throughout the United States, Europe, West Africa, and Japan. His recent New York appearances include Jazz at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Iridium, The Village Vanguard, Small’s, The Kitano Hotel, and Harlem’s historic Lenox Lounge.
Larry’s jazz festival performances include the Grande Parade du Jazz in Nice, France, the North Sea Festival in The Hague, Holland, the Pori Jazz Festival in Finland, Jazz Yatra in Bombay, India, The Charlie Parker Festival in New York, the Ottawa Jazz Festival, and the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. He also performed at the White House for President Reagan and for President Clinton’s 1992 Inaugural Ball. Larry appeared in the jazz film “Texas Tenor” and has been a guest on TV programs including “The Today Show” (NBC) “Breakfast Time” (FX) and has been featured on NPR programs such as “Jazz Set with Dee Dee Bridgewater” and on Judy Carmichael’s “Jazz Inspired.”
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) a Connecticut native, 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 several important CDs: "Insomnia" with the Thomas Chapin Trio on Knitting Factory Works and "Song for Septet" with the Mario Pavone Septet on the New World Countercurrents label. Song for Septet was chosen as one of the "Top Ten Jazz CDs of 1995" by The New York Times. In addition, he recorded the Wendy Chambers piece, "A Mass for Mass Trombones" on the Centaur label.
Peter is currently the Chairman of the Music Department at Salisbury School and is a busy freelance artist in the tri-state area. He has also been a teaching artist at the Litchfield Jazz Camp since 1998.
Peter has released 3 CD's in the past 2 years - "No Chordtet," featuring Dave Santoro, George Sovak and Hamir Atwal, ”Shockwave," featuring the late Thomas Chapin, Steve Johns, Mario Pavone and Jamie Finegan, and No Chordet’s 2nd CD, “Subconscious Love” on Truth Revolution Records. Peter is also a member of the New England Jazz Ensemble and has recorded 4 CDs with the group. The most recent is a Jazz version of Peter and the Wolf. Peter’s CD “Bone-Code” was released in September 2018 on the Clean Feed label based in Lisbon, Portugal. His new CD New Chordtet with bassist Dave Santoro was released on Truth Revolution Records in November 2019.
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.