Berklee Today

Alumnotes

1960s  -  1970s  -  1980s  -  1990s  -  2000s

1958

Pianist Hal Galper of Cochecton, NY, completed an interactive,
play-along jazz instruction book titled Forward Motion. It has 193
PDF pages containing 300 exercises with quick-loading musical files
that are transposable and have adjustable tempos. Visit www.forwardmotionpdf.com
for more information.

1963

Composer Graham Collier of M?laga, Spain, has released two
new CDs: Winter Oranges with the Danish Radio Orchestra and
Bread & Circuses with the Collective in Perth, Australia.
His online jazz discussion forum is posted at www.jazzcontinuu.com/.

1967

Saxophonist Roger Lee Neumann of Santa Clarita, CA, has recorded
three CDs with Roger Neumann's Rather Large Band. He has been the
saxophonist or arranger for such artists as Ray Anthony, Les Brown,
Bill Elliott, Buddy Rich, and Ray Charles and received the 2002
Composer/Arranger Award from the Los Angeles Jazz Society.

1972

Guitarist Frank Potenza of Lakewood, CA, released a new CD
with his quartet titled The Legacy, dedicated to the late
pianist Gene Harris, with whom Potenza worked for four years. The
disc was released by Azica Records, Inc. (www.azica.com).

 

Gary Ruggiero of Milford, CT, received awards for 25 years
of service and the Outstanding Music Educator of the Year Award
from the Connecticut Music Educators Association. Ruggiero is band
director at Danbury High School and plays saxophone professionally.

1974

Nick Labuschagne of Johannesburg, South Africa, operates
Urban Rhythm Factory, the largest post-production music company
in South Africa. Labuschagne has four studios and a staff of composers,
programmers, and sound engineers who create music for commercials
and television and radio programs. Visit www.randburgite.co.za/urf.htm
for information on his company.

 



Patty Larkin

Singer/songwriter Patty Larkin released a new CD titled
Red = Luck for Vanguard Records. The disc features 14 original
songs recorded at Larkin's studio.

1975

Composer David Kowal of Los Angeles, CA, released the new
CD Songs of Love and Devotion. He also composes film and
TV music and is producing several bands in his own studio. For more
on his career, visit www.kowalmusic.com.

Keyboardist/arranger Rob Mounsey of New York City has been
contributing arrangements and keyboard tracks to CDs by Aaron Neville,
James Taylor, Sissel, the Chieftains, Diana Krall, and others. Visit
www.robmounsey.com
for more details.

Richard Niles of London, England, has completed a series
for BBC Radio 2 on the history of pop arranging. The program featured
interviews with great arrangers such as Arif Mardin, George Martin,
Jimmy Haskell, and others who collaborated on hit records over the
past five decades. To hear it online, visit www.bbc.co.uk/radio2.

Guitarist Kim Norton of Castaic, CA, is currently working
with the touring company of Jesus Christ Superstar with Carl
Anderson in the lead role. Norton also has toured with Roger Daltrey
and played on numerous recording sessions in Los Angeles.

1976

Percussionist /composer Johnny Goings of Sioux Falls, SD,
completed an album titled Checkoutthisstuff, which is available
at www.cdbaby.com/johnnygoings.
He also has written a screenplay titled Perfect Match featuring
five songs from the album.

Pianist/composer Gene Bohlmann of Redondo Beach, CA, is
currently pursuing his doctorate in psychology at Argosy University.

1978

Ken Field of Cambridge, MA, was featured on the cover of
the May/June 2003 issue of Saxophone Journal, and his educational
CD Music for Layered Saxophones was included in the magazine.
Visit his website at www.kenfield.org.

Saxophonist Buck Splescia of Auckland, New Zealand, has
released a CD titled Pleasure, Pain, Dezire. Visit www.ambrosejazz.com
for more info.

Producer/engineer William Garrett of Long Island City,
NY, is the studio manager and chief engineer at Sony/ATV Music Publishing,
a studio that has fostered collaborations between many songwriters
and recording artists including Jesse Harris (songwriter) and (singer)
Norah Jones.

1979

Guitarist Jon Catler of New York City has published a book
called The Nature of Music, which describes the evolution
of his 62-tone, just intonation guitar. He has toured with the Catler
Brothers Band and avant- guarde composer LaMonte Young. His book
and CDs are available at www.microtones.com.

1980

Saxophonist Robert Hughes of Maplewood, MO, received his
Ph.D. in musicology last December from Washington University in
Saint Louis. He is an assistant professor of music at Saint Louis
University and plays professionally in Saint Louis.

 

Composer/arranger Henry Moss of Nassau, Bahamas, was the
music director for the Bahamian Ministry of Tourism's Cacique Awards.
His 17-piece band played his compositions and arrangements of Caribbean
standards in a jazz style.

In addition to performing often in Bangkok, singer/guitarist Ti
Muntarbhorn
of Bankok, Thailand, will sing in the "Rolling Requiem"
on September 11, 2003, at the site of New York's World Trade Center.
Singers will perform Mozart's Requiem around the globe in every
time zone for a 24-hour period to mark the second anniversary of
the 9-11 attacks.

Guitarist Paul Nelson of Stamford, CT, is featured on the
song "Jason" from the Jason Becker tribute CD Warmth in the Wilderness
Volume II
(Lion Music).

1981

Composer/engineer/producer Rick DePofi of New York City is
co-owner and president of NY Noise, a a Manhattan recording studio.
He has worked with artists such as Shawn Colvin, Rosanne Cash, Marc
Cohn, Michelle Branch, and others and has worked on numerous TV
and radio ad campaigns.

Saxophonist/composer Laura Dreyer of New York City, a former
member of the DIVA big band, released the CD Mysterious Encounter:
Brazilan Jazz for the Lavasphere
label. Dreyer wrote eight of
the disc's 10 tunes. Visit www.lauradreyer.com
for more information. Jay Nichols of Brigantine, NJ, has served
as the drummer/conductor for the Legends in Concert show at the
Claridge Casino Hotel in Atlantic City for seven years.

Saxophonist Scott Robinson of Teaneck, NJ, played on the
Mingus Big Band's Tonight at Noon . . . Three or Four Shades
of Love
CD, which was nominated for a Grammy. Robinson has played
on more than 150 albums and was a winner in Down Beat magazine's
2002 critic's poll.

1982

Vocalist Lenora Zenzalai Helm of New York City has
released a new CD titled Voice Paintings for the MidLantic
label. The disc features a mix of original and standard tunes.

Violinist Benjamin Smeall of Green Bay, WI, performed at
universities in Wisconsin and Michigan, and did a live radio broadcast
in Chicago with the Chilean world music singer Laura Fuentes and
her ensemble Calicanto. Smeall teaches strings, guitar, voice, and
piano in Green Bay. Visit his website at www.songcycles.net
for more information.

1983

Pianist Pete Gianakopoulos of Chicago, IL, recently opened
the Old School Records store. He operates a label of the same name
and performs with Castle Broadway throughout the Midwest.

 



Steven Kirby

Reggie Lofton of Framingham, MA, produced and played drums
on Clearing My Head, the new CD by singer Jes Perry. Also
appearing on the disc's 13 original songs are Jeff Perry
'90 (bass) and Steve Fekete '96 (guitar). All four are Berklee
staff members.

1984

Composer Joel Goodman of New York City, recently scored several
feature and documentary films. Evenhand, Seabiscuit,
and Robert Capra: In Love and War are screening in theaters
and at festivals. Another short documentary, The Collector of
Bedford Street
, was nominated for an Oscar. For more information
on his work, visit www.hifiproductions.com.

Guitarist/composer Steven Kirby of Concord, MA, has released
a new CD titled North Light featuring saxophonist Chris Potter,
pianist Bruce Barth, bassist Scott Colley, and drummer Matt Wilson.
The tracks include eight original tunes and two standards. Visit
www.sonicbids.com/na/epk.asp
for more information.

 



Tom Andes

1985

Pianist Tom Andes of Columbia, MD, released his fourth CD,
Outer Limits, with the Tom Andes Quintet. Six of the disc's
eight tracks are Andes's original pieces.

Claudio Tarris of Monterrey, Mexico, has been appointed
director of Escuela Superior de M?sica y Danza de Monterrey. He
is also director of the Monterrey Big Band.

1986

Drummer Jim Kersey of Burbank, CA, plays with the popular
Los Angeles-based Led Zeppelin tribute band Led Zepagain. See the
band's website at www.zepagain.com.

1987

Pianist composer Satoko Fujii of Sayama, Japan, released
a second CD titled Minerva with her quartet. It features
Fujii with drummer Tatsuya Yoshida, bassist Takeharu Hayakawa, and
trumpeter Matsuki Tamura on five extended jazz compositions.

 

Bassist Terje Gewelt of Oslo, Norway, has released the duo
CD Interplay on the Resonant label with pianist Christian
Jacob
'86. Gewelt has played on more than 50 jazz recordings
and recently performed in India and Brazil.

Saxophonist Dennis Mitcheltree of Brooklyn, NY, stars in
a short comedy film titled The Sound Barrier, which was screened
at the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival
in April. Mitcheltree plays frequently in New York.

 



Bobby Borg

1988

Bobby Borg of Beverly Hills, CA, authored Musician's Handbook:
A Practical Guide to Understanding the Music Business
for Billboard
Books. It describes business relationships, revenue streams, and
the important steps necessary for success in the music business.

1989

Guitarist Gene Ess (formerly Shimosato) of New York City
played at the Blue Note jazz club in May with saxophonist Ravi Coltrane,
bassist Matt Garrison '92, and drummer Gene Jackson
'84.

Trumpeter Mark Mazor of Antioch, CA, is actively performing
locally. He recently received a grant from Shell Oil to play a concert
in Martinez, CA.

Brian Transeau (a.k.a. BT) of Los Angeles, CA, has been
working as a DJ lately. He previously has done remixes for Madonna,
Tori Amos and Sarah McLachlan, and has written film scores for two
movies. Stories on him recently appeared in Billboard and
EQ magazines.

1990

Saxophonist Peter Barbeau of Taos, NM, is the jazz programmer
for KTAO radio in Taos. His radio show airs on Sunday mornings from
8:00 a.m. to noon. Barbeau also has recorded three CDs.

 

Thomas Berthold of Rehling, Germany, wrote and produced
the music for the rock-pop recording The Boston Project.
Alumni helping out on the disc include Andreas Brade '94
(drums), Rainer Plaschka '96 (bass), and Berklee student
vocalist Andrew Parker-Renga. Berthold played guitars, keyboards,
sang backgrounds, and also composed the string arrangements.

Saxophonist Javier Girotto of Rome, Italy, has been playing
with groups led by trumpeter Enrico Rava, pianist Rita Marcotulli,
Roberto Gatto, and with his own groups. Visit his website at www.javiergirotto.com.

Acoustic bassist Christopher Sharkey of New Orleans, LA,
played at a music festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with the Jerry
Embree Band.

Guitarist Alessandro Ricciarelli of Brooklyn, NY, is highlighted
on a CD by the Billy Nayer Show and on a forthcoming CD of his original
material. He also has composed music for documentary films and a
modern dance work, and will earn his master's degree in music therapy
from New York University next year.

Vocalist Luciana Souza of New York City recently performed
a series of concerts with conductor Roberto Minczuk and the New
York Philharmonic Orchestra singing Manuel de Falla's El Amor
Brujo Suite
.

Eric Tew was nominated for a Grammy Award in the category
of Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical for his work on Sheryl Crow's
C'mon, C'mon CD. Tew also has worked with George Benson,
the Dixie Chicks, Super Furry Animals, and others.

1991

Guitarist/singer Marty Eisenstein of Athens, Greece, organized
a benefit concert with and led a band behind Israeli singer Chaim
Israel at the Athens College Theatre. Funds raised went to teenagers
whose family members were victims of violence in Israel.

 



Sara Wheeler

Singer/songwriter Sara Wheeler of Boston, MA, held a February
CD release party at Club Passim in Cambridge for her latest effort,
Summer. Wheeler has been touring in Europe to promote the
disc.

Bassist Jesse Williams of Arlington, MA, is a member of
Duke Robillard's band and has backed such artists as Johnnie Johnson,
John Hammond, Maria Muldaur, and others. He freelances with the
Aardvark Jazz Orchestra and the Jazz Composers' Alliance. He also
teaches full time.

1992

Guitarist Yoichi Arakawa of Torrance, CA, has published two
more instruction books. Jazz Guitar Chords and Accompaniment and
Blues Guitar Chords and Accompaniment are available at www.sixstringsmusicpub.com.



Robert Cord

Guitarist Michael Bell of Los Angeles, CA, and his wife,
Tina, welcomed twin daughters Audrey and Malena into their home.
The babies were born on March 17.

 

Robert Cord of Dighton, MA, has been named vice president
of operations for Perspective Communica-tions Group of Middletown,
RI. The company provides leading corporations with business communications
services.

 

Saxophonist Dave Ellis of Hercules, CA, has released a CD
titled State of Mind, featuring pianist Mulgrew Miller, bassists
Peter Washington and Christian McBride, drummers Carl Allen and
Lewis Nash, and alto saxophonist Vincent Herring. Orrin Keepnews
produced the disc for the Milestone label.

 



Dave Ellis

1993

Peter Keereman of Zedelgem-Veldegem, Belgium, works at his
own commercial recording studio as a producer, engineer, arranger,
and songwriter. He has produced several hit records and the Adrivalan
Orchestra, for which he is the music director, pianist, and arranger,
was recently signed by Sony Music Entertainment International.

Trumpeter Frank Vardaros of Boston, MA, led the Ryles Jazz
Orchestra in concerts featuring fellow trumpeter Arturo Sandoval
and trombonist Slide Hampton at Ryles Jazz Club in Cambridge this
spring.

1994

Guitarist "Metal" Mike Chlasciak of North Arlington, NJ,
completed a tour of Japan with Halford and is completing a CD with
his band Pain Museum. Digitech has released guitar effects with
Metal Mike presets. Visit www.painmuseum.com
for more information.

 



Alison Keslow

Bassist/composer Alison Keslow of Sudbury, MA, released
her debut CD, Between Earth and Sky. Players include faculty
members Dino Govoni '83 (saxophone), Jon Hazilla (drums),
Dave Limina '91 (keyboards), and Peter Wiernik '94
(guitar). For more information, visit www.alisonkeslow.com.

Bassist Richard Hammond of Brooklyn, NY, has been working
with Angelique Kidjo, Jonatha Brooke, the Steve Kimock Band, and
Melissa Errico.

Drummer Shinya Miyamoto of Astoria, NY, is playing with
the Harlem Gospel Choir. The choir played in Argentina and Chile
in April and and later this year will tour Europe and Japan. Miyamoto
is also a freelance engineer at Sterling Sound.

1995

Singer/songwriter Ciarra Civello of New York City, recorded
her debut album, which Russ Titelman produced, in February for Verve
Records. Civello cowrote a song with Burt Bacharach for the disc.

Composer Antonio Carlos DeFeo of Pelham Mannor, NY, scored
the movie All American Boy. The film was screened in Boston
at Emerson College on February 12.

Drummer Leobadis Gonz?lez of San Juan, PR, has released
the CD La Siega with his group NISI. The band features saxophonist
Miguel Zen?n '98, vocalist Jessica Vega, guitarist Ermesc
Gonzalez Rodr?guez, and bassist Gabriel Rodr?guez. Visit www.nisimusic.com
for more information.

 



Orna

Vocalist Orna Shifren of Santa Monica, CA, released Orna:
The Very Thought of You
on the A440 Music Group imprint. Bassist
Brian Bromberg produced the disc. For more on the CD visit www.a440musicgroup.com.

1996

Composer Peter Bufano of Somerville, MA, composed the score
for the one-hour feature film Act Your Age. Bufano enlisted
Dan Bowden '80 (guitar, mandolin), Allison Weitzman
'00 (flute), Scott C. Martin '97 (mix engineer), and current
Berklee student Marissa Knaub (harp) to record it. Listen to MP3s
at www.peterbufano.com.

Singer/songwriter Michael Castaldo of New York City has
released Gioia 2, a double CD featuring 120 minutes of vocal
and instrumental music by Castaldo's group Lives of a Cell, featuring
Argentinean flamenco guitarist Hernan Romero. Visit www.livesofacell.com
for more information.

Martin Degener of M?nster, Germany, won a German idea competition
called Usable. The K?rber Foundation, located in Germany, sponsors
the competition to bring good ideas from America to Germany.

Songwriter Katherine Farnham of Hallandale, FL, was named
songwriter of the year in South Florida's Big Time Talent Show.

Drummer Steve Hass of Astoria, NY, released his own CD
titled Traveler featuring Janis Siegel, Ravi Coltrane, Donny
McCaslin, John Benitez, James Genus, Ben Butler, Jon Dryden, Yaron
Gershovsky, and others.

Producer/drummer/DJ Raul Ramirez of Miami Beach, FL, has
released the CD The Chillout Sessions on his own ecomusica
label. He also has played with the Latin rock band Sofia. Visit
www.ecomusica.com
to learn more.

Drummer Joe Schleicher of Placentia, CA, performed with
Kenny Burrell for All-Star Guitar Night at the 2003 NAMM Show. He
also plays around Los Angeles with the Duane Allen trio and vocalist
Kim Kline.

1997

Guitarist Justin Ballard of Dorchester, MA, and his band
Debris are playing in the Boston area and have completed an EP and
video for their single "More Like Me."

Brian Donovan of Sherman Oaks, CA, did engineering for
the Barry Manilow CDs Here at the Mayflower and A Christmas
Gift of Love
. He also has released his own CD titled Solo
Moon
. Visit www.briandonovan.com
for more information.

Composer Jorge Farall of San Miguel de Tucum?n, Argentina,
has had his piano suite Moods performed in Brazil and the
United States. The piece has been added to the holdings at the Conservatorio
Municipal Manuel de Falla in Buenos Aires.

Saxophonist Adam Niewood of New York City has released
the CD Former Miss Sunshine with his group Sons, Brothers,
and Wrestlers for the Native Language label. The president of Native
Language is Joe Sherbanee '96, Niewood's former Berklee roommate.

Pancho Tomaselli of Hollywood, CA, has been playing bass
with the band War and with his own band Salsa Soup. He has recorded
with Carlos Santana, War, Ricky Martin, Nelly Furtado, Chaka Khan,
and many others.

 



Chihiro Yamanaka

1998

Pianist Chihiro Yamanaka of Brooklyn, NY, produced a four-song
demo titled When October Goes with bassist Larry Grenadier
and drummer Jeff Ballard.

1999

Bassist Dana Decker of Studio City, CA, plays with the Dan
Band around Los Angeles and appeared on the Late Late Show with
Craig Kilborn.

Drummer Joe Dunne of Santa Monica, CA, has been touring
with Ben Taylor. The band played on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
in February and will tour through the fall. Saxophonist Courtney
Fadlin of Worcester, MA, released his fourth CD, The Journey,
on Acquire Records. Fadlin has toured the United States, Canada,
Europe, and the Caribbean in his Christian music ministry.

Vibist Laura Friedman (a.k.a. Lalo) of Brooklyn, NY, has
released a new CD titled Lalo for Blue Note Records. The
disc features bassist Kermit Driscoll '78, drummer Todd
Isler
'80, and special guests Kyler England '98, and
Judson Crane '00.

Makeba Riddick has signed publishing deal with Bad Boy/EMI
as a singer/songwriter. She is credited on songs by Jennifer Lopez
("All I Have"), 3LW ("Ghetto Love and Heartbreak," and "Put Em Up"),
and AZ's "A-1 Performance."

Songwriter Amanda Williams of Nashville, TN, has signed
a songwriting contract with Sony/ATV Tree, the largest publisher
of country music. Williams cowrote the Garth Brooks/George Jones
hit "Beer Run," and is the daughter of hit songwriter Kim Williams.

2000

Composer Pierre Andr? of Santa Monica, CA, recently orchestrated
music for John Ottman on Twentieth Century Fox Movie X2 (2003).

Pianist Wydell Croom of Gaithersburg, MD, has released
a CD of instrumental gospel music titled Seasons. Visit his
website at www.anointedhandsproductions.com.

Pianist Rubens Peixinho Sao Paulo, Brazil, has released
an album of world music titled Mundo. Percussionist Luiz
Claudio Farias and Peixinho explore rhythms of India, Africa, the
Amazon, and American jazz. Visit www.rpxmusic.com.

Saxophonist Bob Reynolds of Astoria, NY, has completed
a CD titled Live at the Jazz Corner with his quartet. To
hear tracks, go to http://artists.mp3s.com/artists/147/bob_reynolds_quartet.html.

Composer/guitarist Julio Santill?n of Boston, MA, released
a CD with his septet titled Anit Negra. The disc features
bassist Fernando Huergo '92, drummer Franco Pinna
'00, vocalist Marta G?mez '01, flutist Fernando Brandao
'99, accordionist Evan Harlan, clarinetist Carlos Richelini, and
vocalist R?ul Carnota. Visit www.juliosantillan.com.

Drummer George Shepherd of Newport Beach, CA, is marketing
director of MI Media LLC, publisher of Fingerstyle Guitar and
Basics
magazines. His publishing company CDI has released drum
instruction books by Shepherd, Robert Keding '00, and Gregg
Martin. Visit www.cdipublications.com.

 



Gregg Stein

Gregg Stein of Quincy, MA, has been appointed product manager
of sheet cymbals at the Avedis Zildjian Company. Also a busy drummer,
Stein performs and records with the band Room 314 featuring guitarist
Shaun Dougherty '91, vocalist Patrick Proctor, and bassist
Ian Cariolo.

2001

Saxophonist Chris Carbajal of Loma Linda, CA, has joined
the band Save Ferris led by singer Monique Powell. The group has
been featured in movies and in the television series Roswell.

Singer/songwriter Ava Schlink of Providence, RI, and her
brother Bob Schlink '98 were finalists in the 2002 John Lennon
Songwriting Contest in the r&b category for their song "Breezy."
Ava is presently completing her debut CD.

Guitarist/composer Vladimir Vasileski of Boston, MA, has
been writing, arranging, and playing guitar for projects in Boston
and in his native Macedonia. A song he recorded and coproduced became
a hit with Macedonian television, radio, and magazines.

Guitarist Josh Brill of Chicago, IL, served as a faculty
member at Triton College this year. He toured Europe with the Jan
James Group in April and May. Visit his website at www.joshbrill.com
for more details.

2002

Bassist Marco Panascia of New York City has recorded a trio
CD with Lewis Nash for the Japanese What's New label. He has performed
with Benny Green, Russell Malone, Wallace Roney, and Jane Monheit
and was featured on Billy Taylor's cable show Jazz and the New
Generation
. Panascia is a master's degree candidate at Manhattan
School of Music. Visit www.marcopanascia.com
for more information.

Liz Pappademas of Mill Valley, CA, was named top female
singer/songwriter in the Just Plain Folks Music Awards for 2002.
She also took third place in the best contemporary album category.
Visit www.justplainfolks.org
for more information.

 



Mark Petrie

Mark Petrie of Boston, MA, composed the score to the independent
film Minimal Knowledge after receiving his film scoring degree.
The film was screened at festivals in America and Mexico to critical
acclaim.

Pianist Oli Rockberger of Boston, MA, will perform with
bassist Tony Grey '01 and drummer Chris Farr '02 at
the Brecon Jazz Festival in Brecon, Wales, in August. The Brecon
festival is one of Europe's premier jazz events.