Hiroaki Honshuku was first introduced to jazz in 1985 while teaching music at the US Naval Base in Yokosuka, Japan. Two years later, Hiro came to the Boston area. He started at Berklee College of music as a scholarship student in January 1987. By the fall, he was also accepted to the New England Conservatory as a scholarship graduate student.
Mauricio's fresh approach to the guitar is a reflection of his musical heritage – one that traces back to his homeland in the culturally rich Northeastern Brazil, where he grew up to the sounds of Afro-Brazilian street ensembles and colorful folkloric performances. His teenage years were filled with diverse musical experiences, playing blues, hard rock, and traditional Brazilian music in a variety of groups. Even at a young age, he was constantly in demand as a sideman, soon being recruited by the popular reggae band Sky Roots, with which he recorded his first album.
Based in Boston, USA, Gustavo Assis-Brasil began playing the guitar at the age of 13. He attended the Federal University of Santa Maria, Brazil, to get his bachelor in classical guitar in 1995. During those years, he worked as a studio musician, private teacher and played with some important bands and projects (Nocet, Bichofolha duo w/Guilherme Barros). In 1995 he was featured in Guitar Player Magazine - USA (Spotlight session).
Ebinho Cardoso is a virtuous on his instrument. For the singularity of his music and technique is one of the most respected Brasilian bassists of the new generation. Composer, arranger, singer and researcher, uses atypical elements of the electric, showing the possibilities of the bass as a accompaniment instrument, as solo and especially harmony, characteristic of his performances that combine precision and refinement. It brings together traces of jazz to the peculiarities of Brazilian classical and popular music.
Fernando Huergo was born in Cordoba, Argentina.
Has recorded over 80 albums, including 8 as leader.
Fernando has toured in North, Central and South America, Europe and Asia.
He has performed with the bands of Danilo Perez, Guillermo Klein, Luciana Souza, Hendrick Meurkens, Victor Mendoza, Dave Liebman, Dave Samuels, Joe Beck, Marta Gomez, Los Changos, Pablo Ablanedo, Katie Viqueira, El Eco, Mark Shilansky, Fernando Tarres, The Jinga Quintet, Edu Tancredi, Gilson Schachnick, Fernando Brandao, Teresa Ines, Humberto Ramirez, Eguie Castrillo, Tony Lujan and many others.
Native of Japan, having a well known jazz pianist, Hiroshi Ikeda as father, and professional classical singer as mother, Ms. Ikeda started piano at her age of 3, and violin at 4. She received Bachelor and Master degrees from Osaka College of Music, Japan, where she intensively studied classical violin with Tomotada Soh and Takako Murata.
Steve Langone grew up in the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts and continues to live and work in the area. Musically he has traveled far and wide, making the most of the great diversity of musical opportunities he has encountered. As a teenager he won multiple High School musicianship awards and started playing professional jazz gigs before graduating. He went on to get a BA on scholarship from the Berkelee College of Music, where he had the opportunity to work and study with musicians from all over the world.
Originally from Brazil, Renato has been performing with some of the most unique musicians in the New England area since 1999. Alongside these artists, whether in an instrumental project or accompanying a singer, a wide variety of Jazz, Latin Jazz, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian styles are constantly on display.
Born and raised in Nagoya, Japan.
After graduating from Koyo Conservatory in Nagoya, Ryo moved to Boston in 2005 to attend Berklee College of Music. While in Boston, he met great mentors..great Hal Crook, great Ian Froman and great Bob Gullotti. They influenced him in so many ways.
Following his graduation from Berklee with summa cum laude (B.M. 2008), Ryo worked as a staff accompanist at Berklee’s voice department and piano department for a year.
Born in Belo Horiozonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Benhur grew up in contact with the music and began playing percussion at age 10, At 15 he began playing the drums with different artists. In 2001 he moved to the United States where he expanded his musical experience participating in different projects. Graduated in 2010 by the Collective School of Music in New York, he studied with renowned teachers. Outstanding student, Benhur received the "Directors Award". He's now a New York based musician also part of the Alumni band performing in differents artists.
Born January 13,1951, in Sao Roque, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Mr. Pienasola began formal classical studies in 1964 at Carlos Gomes conservatory in Sao Paulo. In 1965 Pienasola recorded and toured Japan and Europe with "Acaru", one of the greatest Brazilian Jazz group on the international jazz scene. In 1968, he joined Dick Farney quartet an extremely popular group in the bossa nova era in which he toured all over world.
Marcos Pienasola first got involved with music through his father Jose Pienasola, a bass player. He came from Brazil at the age of 13. Soon after he began performing at local venues around Boston as a drummer/percussionist and received a full scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He has studied with renowned musicians including Alan Dawnson, Gary Chaffe and Casy Scheurrell. He has played on a number of albums and toured in South and North America as well as Asia.
Rafael Russi's infectious personality and creativity on both bass and guitar hooks and fascinates every music lover. Mixing influences from his brazilian childhood , R&B and jazz improvisation, the New York based guitarist, bassist and composer has earned a reputation as a respected artist in the competitive New England scene.
"His ideas are virtually endless, which comes from his vast knowledge of so many different kinds of musical styles that he mixes to create his own" says Hiro Honsuku.
Samba | Jazz | Salsa | R&B | Funk | African | Latin | World Fusion
A contemporary percussionist and educator, Marcus, is a native of Bahia, Brazil. He commits his life to the study, teaching and performance of his hometown's Afro-Brazilian music and heritage.
Born in 1963 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Gilson Schachnik started music instruction when he was eleven at The Yamaha Organ School. Later on he studied piano with Hilton "Gogo" Valente and Antonio Bezzan. His professional career began when he was 22 years old, playing at nightclubs in Sao Paulo. A few years later he was performing with BMG/Ariola artist Patricia Marx and touring throughout Brazil with Polygram recording artist Rosa Maria. During this same period Gilson composed jingles for BASF cassette tapes and Playboy magazine, among others.
Born in Japan, Noriko Terada originally started her musical life with the piano at he age of 3. Later at the age of 11, she began playing the percussion which she quickly fell in love with.
Out of Belo Horizonte in Southeast Brazil, guitarist Andre Vasconcelos has a very unique and intensely energetic style. Throughout his career, he has displayed versatility and proficiency performing with or sharing a bill with numerous musical legends such as Miguel Zenón, Vinx (Stevie Wonder, Sting), Seu Jorge, Guinga, Arturo Sandoval, Oz Noy, Keith Carlock, David Binney, Louis Cole (Knower, Quincy Jones), Bernie Worrell (P-Funk), Jefferson Starship and many others.
Harvey Wirht based in Brooklyn NY, part of a new generation of drummers with a musical language steeped in the traditional rhythms of the world such as Kaseko, Kawina, Jazz, Gnawa, Bikutsi, Calypso, and Songo. His playing has been described as “effortless syncopated grooving”, “powerful drums”, “organic cooking along a hot simmer”, and an “original and expressive voice”. He has played on over 30 albums and is currently touring with 4 time Grammy nominee Angelique Kidjo.
Pedro Ito, drummer/ percussionist from Sao Paulo, Brazil, came to the USA in 1999 to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston. During this time he has been working with several artists in Jazz and many other world music styles using a big variety of instruments. Pedro has been extensively performing and recording in the Boston area and New York City with great musicians such as George Garzone, John Lockwood, John Patitucci, Joey Calderazo, Dave Fiuczynski and Jerry Bergonzi.
A native of Japan, Chihiro began to play piano at age four. After eight years of studying classical piano, she won the grand prize at a Fresh Talent competition in Japan. She graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2000 where she received numerous awards, including Downbeat magazine's Outstanding Performance award. Chihiro also won the IAJE's Sisters in Jazz competition and toured Europe with the group in 2000. Chihiro has performed with Gary Burton, George Russell, Curtis Fuller, Terri Lynne Carrington, Ed Thigpen and George Benson.
Natalie Dietrich is a Vibist/Drummer and Composer/Arranger experienced in the European and North American Music Scene. Having studied Jazz Drums in Cologne, Germany and Classical Percussion in her hometown Zurich, Switzerland, Natalie Dietrich quickly found work in a variety of projects ranging from Contemporary Chamber Music, Orchestral work, Theatre, Multimedia, Jazz Concerts, a Major Tour with a Pop Group, numerous CD and TV Productions, Teaching and Writing Music.
Casper Gyldensoe is a high-energy performer, guitarist, and vocalist who thrills audiences around the world. He is a musician without boundaries who can play any style as well as anybody. Casper Gyldensoe is a very experienced, highly professional musician. Since he was eleven years old he has been performing all over the world and in all styles of music. With his first group, Bydrengene, Casper Gyldensoe experienced his first major success. With the band he had numerous TV appearances. In 1991 he and the band flew to Moscow to perform in a charity event for the Chernobyl disaster.
Only four years after he first began his musical studies at age 18, Terri Lyne Carrington commented, “…he will be an important voice in the drumming community over the next generation.” Thomas Hartman, a native of New Hampshire, grew from being music illiterate to touring internationally in this short period of time. Some of his most notable teachers from Berklee College of Music include aforementioned Terri Lyne Carrington, Hal Crook, George Garzone, and Tiger Okoshi.
Alex Smith was born in Berwyn, Pennsylvania. He moved to Boston, Massachusetts to attend Berklee College of Music on a merit-based scholarship in 2004. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Berklee in 2008. During his time there Alex studied privately with John Lockwood, Matthew Garrison, Jim Stinnett, Anthony Vitti, Lenny Stalworth and Hal Crook.
Asami Ueda was born in Nara, Japan, having parents who have been performing together in a 17-piece Red Panther Big Jazz Orchestra. Her father, Yasusada Ueda is the lead trumpet player and her mother Noriko Ueda is the band vocalist. They embedded music in Asami even before her birth, and continued feeding it to her as she grows.