Berklee Today


1950s  -  1960s  -  1970s  -  1980s  -  1990s  -  2000s
  Wayne Johnson '74

C. Paul Luongo of Boston, MA, celebrated the 50th anniversary of C. Paul Luongo Company, a full service public-relations and marketing agency for consumer, commercial, financial, educational, high-technology, and other accounts. Visit

Drummer and arranger Tony Hyde of Braintree, MA, is the New England operations manager for Classic Music Festivals of Medford, NJ. He presents spring festivals in the Boston area for high-school bands and choruses. He also plays with and writes for local big bands and leads a jazz quartet featuring trumpeter and vocalist Christine Fawson '02.

Pianist/vocalist Barbara Reed of Long Beach, CA, works as a performer as well as fiction and freelance writer. She published a novel based on the music business titled High Notes Are Murder and composed a soundtrack for it as well. Visit

  Joe Baldassare '74

Brian Conigliaro of Mahopac, NY, a visual artist, had his works displayed for five months at the JK Jazz Restaurant and Bar in Peekskill, NY.

Guitarist Charles Chapman of Boothbay Harbor, ME, appears on the latest DVD Teaching, Playing, and Hangin' by studio bassist Carol Kaye. Visit Chapman will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Kirkmichael International Guitar Festival for outstanding contributions to guitar and music education in August.

Marc Elbaum of Meredith, NH, played clarinet on the song "23rd Street" on Grammy nominee Bill Morrissey's CD The Essential Bill Morrissey. Elbaum also cowrote and performed on two songs for the Ernest Thompson play White People Christmas, which ran at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles last year. Elbaum is a music teacher at the New Hampton School.

Frank Ferrucci of New York City composed music for the ABC show Peter Jennings Reporting: Ecstasy Rising, which aired nationally on April 1.

Flutist Nestor Torres of Miami, FL, has released his latest pop instrumental CD titled Sin Palabras (Without Words). Visit

Peter Pece of Aquebogue, NY, earned his Ph.D. in neuromusicology from De Montfort University in Leicester, England. His dissertation involved studying the effects of brain trauma on the memory skills of musicians. A pianist, Pece plays locally and teaches.

Producer Joe Baldassare of New York City operates the Kunduru Music label which has released albums of world, classical, and meditative music and the popular children's CD Happy Times Ten. Visit

Guitarist Wayne Johnson of Carlsbad, CA, has released a solo guitar CD titled One Guitar on Solid Air Records. Johnson has toured for years with the Manhattan Transfer and recently backed Natalie Cole in a band with Richie Goods '91 (bass), Steve Hass '92 (drums), and Yaron Gershovsky '77 (keyboards).

Composer/pianist Victor Vanacore of Granada Hills, CA, is composer for the television shows Joe Millionaire, The Apprentice, and Survivor and for various ad campaigns. He has served as arranger and conductor for the upcoming Ray Charles duets album featuring Michael McDonald, Johnny Mathis, Elton John, and Willie Nelson. Visit

Victor Vanacore '74  

Keyboardist/composer David DeGrand of Worcester, MA, released his second independent CD, entitled The Curried Chicken Suite. The CD is available at and can be streamed at

Guitarist Kim Cascone of Pacifica, CA, worked on three CD projects with experimental and electronic music artists Merzbow, Lasse Marhaug, and Coeval. He is working on his own disc and toured Europe in the spring.

Songwriter Mark Montanari of Pittsburgh, PA, has released a CD titled Treated and Released featuring 14 rock songs. Visit

Harrison Goldberg of Gualala, CA, was notified that his song "Passage to Djibouti" from the CD Tales of Kings by his group Neon Egypt, made it to number one in the world music category on the website. Visit

Timothy Kotowich of Milan, Italy, has been named the managing director of Amiata Records.

Jonathan Lax of Summit, NJ, was appointed to the board of the New Jersey chapter of IAJE and will edit the IAJE newsletter for New Jersey.

Pianist (and former faculty member) Katy Roberts of Paris, France, is a vital performer in the Paris jazz scene. She has released two CDs to date, the most recent is titled The Vibe. Percussionist Sa Davis and trombonist Ku-Umba Frank Lacy '81 are among the musicians on the recording. Visit

Guitarist Dave Askren of Monrovia, CA, played on the CD Rhubumba by the Los Angeles-based latin jazz group of the same name. The disc features trumpeter Bobby Shew with a Cuban rhythm section including bassist Rigoberto Lopez and percussionist Jimmy Branly.

Kelly Jones of Wheeling, WV, has songs on Rewired: A Tribute to Jeff Beck and Crushing Days: Tribute to Joe Satriani on the Progressive Arts label. He also teaches guitar and operates his own Playland Studio.

  Stephen Eckels '81

Guitarist Stephen Eckels of Kalispell, MT, released Sparks from the 7 Worlds, a collection of 25 classical guitar masterpieces. Eckels has authored 11 books for Mel Bay Publications and teaches guitar full time at Flathead High School. Visit

Trumpeter Dennis Keating of Pahrump, NV, continues to back various artists on the Las Vegas strip and recently played in New York City, St. Louis, Orlando and Portand, OR. He is recording a jazz CD with his son Kevin, a singer and guitarist.

Bassist Shunsuke Mizuno of Tokyo, Japan, operates the label OCM Records and has released seven CDs. His latest, for koto and five-string bass, is titled Beyond the Blue. Visit

  (From the left): Tom Love '82, Hirataka Kawai (president of Kawai), and Frank Alkyer of Music Inc. magazine

Tom Love of Alpharetta, GA, and Kawai President Hirataka Kawai received Music Inc. magazine's Supplier Excellence Award in Product Innovation in January. Tom Love is the electronics marketing manager for Kawai America and Kawai Canada.

Bob Ross of Brooklyn, NY, played bass and mixed the album Infinite Monkey Theory by Angora. He is the chief audio engineer at the Auditory Perception Laboratory in Brooklyn.

Emiel van Egdom of Amherst, NY, recently coproduced, co-engineered, and mastered a new CD for Yasutaka Yoshioka '83 and will work on a new CD for Meta de Vries. He is currently writing music for his own upcoming CD release. Visit

Guitarist/composer Steven Kirby of Concord, MA, took second place in the 2004 International Songwriting Competition in the jazz category. Judges included Pat Metheny and Bruce Lundvall. For more information, visit

Trumpeter Paul Tomashefsky of Shrewsbury, MA, recently published Jazz Inspiration for Improvisation, a book of improvisational techniques. Tomashefsky has taught music in the Massachusetts public schools since 1984.

Greg Colbath '84  

Guitarist Greg Colbath of Natick, MA, has released a CD titled Desert Sand featuring four of his instrumental rock compositions. Visit

Dale DeJoy of Wakefield, RI, released a CD of his original songs with his band 3D Joy. Entitled Container, the disc features guitarist Michael Ruzitschka '01 and saxophonist Grey Cambio '79. DeJoy also released a live gospel CD called Mission of Joy Live. Visit

Charles Carlini of New York City is producing concert events featuring a range of artists, including bassists Richard Davis, Eddie Gomez, and Buster Williams, keyboardists Keith Emerson, Rick Wakeman, and Suzanne Ciani, and Latin music artists Candido Camero and the Conga Kings. Visit

(From the left): Howard Shore '68 and Michael Semanic '85  

Michael Semanick of San Rafael, CA, earned his first Academy Award in the category of Best Sound Mixing for his work as a sound re-recording mixer on The Lord of the Rings: the Return of the King. Semanick has done numerous film projects and is currently working on Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and The Village.

  Chris Corley '86

Guitarist/singer Chris Corley of Long Branch, NJ, produced Someone 2 Love, a collection of original songs, in his home studio. Visit

Pianist/composer Satoko Fujii of Saitama, Japan, released her third CD Zephyros on the NotTwo Records label. Visit

  Matt Kaslow '87

Guitarist Matt Kaslow of Brooklyn, NY, recently completed a five-show run at Mohegan Sun Casino as a guitarist and musical director for Laura Branigan.

Saxophonist Dennis Mitcheltree '87 of Brooklyn, NY, led his American Music Group Sextet in a Carnegie Hall concert on June 11 that featured saxophonist Gary Bartz and trumpeter Ingrid Jensen '89.

Steve Ward '87 of New York City, coproduced Low End Response, the debut CD from Uncle Izzy. The disc has gotten national airplay. Visit

(From the left): Jackson MacInnis '88 Al Di Meola '74  

Film composer Mitch Clyman '88 of Jerusalem, Israel, has recently scored 10 animated films and produced the music for The Covenant: The Story of My People, a musical depicting the history of the Jewish people. He owns and operates Muso Productions, Ltd. in Jerusalem.

Jackson MacInnis '88 of Alexandria, VA, is chief engineer for XM Radio. He has worked on projects for Al Di Meola '74, Ben Folds, and Wynton Marsalis. Visit

Tim Swetonic of Seattle, WA, started Freetone Records, a jazz label, and released Live at the Owl 'n' Thistle, Volume 1 by Bebop & Destruction. The group features Marc Fendel '95 (alto sax) and Ryan Burns '96 (piano). Visit

  (From the left): Matt Temple '89 and Mel Gibson

Matt Temple of Los Angeles, CA, did sound design for the hit movie The Passion of the Christ directed by Mel Gibson.

Todd Whitelock of Cranford, NJ, received a Grammy award in the Best Engineered Classical Album category for his work on Yo Yo Ma's Obrigado Brazil CD. He also engineered the Grammy-winning albums Gypsy (Best Musical Show Album category) and Wayne Shorter's Alegria (Best Jazz Instrumental Album category).

Heather Edwards of New York City, a pianist, songwriter, actress, and children's book author released her first CD of 11 songs entitled To Be Continued... All songs were written and performed by Edwards with Richie Goods '91 producing and playing bass. Visit

Kevin Rapillo '90 of Nashville, TN, is touring with Rodney Atkins to support Atkins's debut album Honesty, a top-five country smash.

The progressive rock Internet radio station Delicious Agony recently spotlighted three CDs by Kevin Rees of Osaka, Japan. Visit

Guitarist Alessandro Ricciarelli of Brooklyn, NY, is studying music therapy at New York University and has published magazine articles on the subject. He also composed the soundtrack for Ferry Tales, which was nominated for a 2004 Oscar in the Documentary, Short Subject category. He is planning the release of a trio CD.

Pianist/songwriter Thomas Eckel released his fourth album, a two-CD set titled Inside Out. The collection features 17 pop songs and five solo piano pieces. Visit

Pianist Matt Rohde of Redondo Beach, CA, has toured with Jane's Addiction, Alanis Morissette, Jennifer Lopez, and Hanson and has served as the musical director for Maxwell, Kelly Clarkson, Anastacia, and the American Idol First Season tour.

Guitarist Marc Strommer of Los Angeles, CA, plays with various groups, including the Dan Band, a rock-comedy group featured in the movie Old School and seen on the Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn.

Bassist Jesse Williams has been touring and recording with blues and swing guitarist Duke Robillard. Williams also teaches bass, guitar, and ensemble at Milton Academy, Concord Academy, and Phillips Andover Academy.

Bassist Ivan Bodley of Brooklyn, NY, went to Izmir, Turkey, in May to play violinist Alexander Markov's piece The Rock Concerto for orchestra, chorus, and rock band. Visit for more about Bodley's activities.

Stacy Golden '92  

Stacy (Duran) Golden of Burbank, CA, has released her debut CD, Thin Wire Walk. The disc's 10 original songs were written by Golden, and several were cowritten with her husband, Chris Golden '94. The CD was mixed by Jay Frigoletto '92. Visit

Vocalist Lori Cotler of Somers, NY, performed South Indian rhythm singing (Konnakkol) with Grammy-winning percussionist Glen Velez at the Berklee Performance Center in June. Visit

Greg Manning (Wachter) of Zurich, Switzerland, wrote "Celebrate!" the winning song for the Eurovision Song Contest. Television coverage of the event was broadcast on May 15 before an estimated audience of 100 million viewers. Manning is keyboardist for Jonathan Butler.

Sergio Alvares of Vitoria, Brazil, is the music-education chair at the Universidade Federal do Espirito Santo in Brazil and has been named the director of the Southeast region for the Brazilian Association of Music Educators. Dr. Alvares has appeared as a lecturer, conductor, and performer at events throughout Brazil and America.

Singer/songwriter Sandrine Ligabue (aka san.drine) of New York City released her debut album, Histoires d'Eau, on Drine Machine Music. Visit for more info. san.drine's vocals will also be featured on the upcoming EP Fly Me to the Lunar by the drum 'n' bass project Suisse Modular.

  Alejandro Cimadoro '94

Acoustic bassist Alejandro Cimadoro of Waltham, MA, has recorded his first CD, titled The Princess and the Moonlight, containing 12 of his original pieces. The disc features Antonio Sanchez '97 (drums), George Garzone '72 (tenor and soprano saxophones), Nando Michelin '91 (piano), and Joel Yennior (trombone). Visit ~alexcimadoro/Home/index.html.

Bassist Chris Golden of Burbank, CA, is touring with rock organist Brian Auger in Europe and the United States and will play on Auger's next album. A session bassist in Los Angeles, Golden played on Rod Stewart's Grammy-nominated CD As Time Goes By: The Great American Songbook, Volume II and other projects.

Stephen Krchniak of Oakland, CA, and his company Perfect Pitch Music created video content for the DVD-ROM version of the movie Secondhand Lions. The DVD was released internationally in February 2004.

Shinya Miyamoto of Astoria, NY, toured Asia, England, and Canada with the Harlem Gospel Choir last fall. He also produced the song "Kuchi-zuke" for the Japanese singer Asuka Hayashi.

Drummer Edmund Arnold of Watertown, MA, and his group Amun Ra were included in a Boston Globe article titled "The Next Big Bands." He also performed with pianist Hank Jones at Scullers and plays guitar and sings with Fred's Bowling Ball.

Michael Burns of Las Vegas, NV, has been a string trainer and performer in Blue Man Group: Live at Luxor in Las Vegas since the show opened there in 2000.

Singer/songwriter Jen Chapin of Brooklyn, NY, released a new CD titled Linger. In addition to her husband Stephen Crump on bass, the disc includes drummer Dan Rieser '90, saxophonist Chris Cheek '91, keyboardist Pete Rende '95, and guitarist Jamie Fox. Visit

Music Director/composer Brian Lydell of East Brunswick, NJ, received an Emmy nomination in the category of Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series for his work on the show One Life to Live. This is Lydell's second nomination.

Bassist Paco Morales of Mexico City, Mexico, is playing at the musical theater production West Side Story in Mexico City's Pedregal Theatre. He also plays in the house band of the late-night TV show El Baño in addition to doing recording sessions and bass clinics.

Pianist Michele Evans of Carmel, CA, completed a folio titled Animal Tone Poems that was published by Hal Leonard. The book contains contemporary piano solos for intermediate and advanced players. Evans also recently scored a film titled Tomorrow When I'm Skinny. Visit

Film composer Vincent Gillioz of West Hollywood, CA, is scoring his 16th movie entitled, Once in a Lifetime: Just Go For It!

Percussionist Donny Gruendler of Encino, CA, is an associate professor at Musicians Institute and teaches recording technology for the nonprofit education program Sound Art. He also plays live, endorses Vic Firth products, and has published articles in Drum Groove Pro magazine.

Lisa Hearns of Staten Island, NY, is the new New York Berklee Alumni Chapter coordinator. She was also named a board member of the New York Blues & Jazz Society.

Guitarist/vocalist Gregan Wortman of Portland, ME, has performed throughout Wyoming, and appeared in January with his rock trio Dragonfly in Portland, Maine. His original music is available at

Rob Giles of Nashville, TN, completed his third independent rock release Mother Mary and Matthew. He has been cowriting with top writers and artists in Nashville and is signed to Sony Music Publishing. Visit

Vibist Christos Rafalides of Astoria, NY, toured northern Greece with his group Manhattan Vibes (which includes drummer Steve Hass '97). Rafalides also recorded with Wallace Roney '81 and performed at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall.

Guitarist Tony Roberts of Somerville, MA, released the CD Grains of You on his own Broken River Records label. The disc was produced by Anthony J. Resta '80 and features Roberts's band the Saints of San Carlos (John Dorizzi '90 drums, David An '91 bass, and Mike Smith '92 guitar). Visit

Guitarist Thomas Wallisch of Kappel, Austria, recorded an album titled Finally with vocalist Michaela Kollar. The disc's 10 songs feature Kollar's vocals accompanied by Wallisch's solo and overdubbed guitars and loops. Visit

Vocalist Amy Ward of Franklin Park, NJ, will open shows for the Dave Matthews Band at the Tweeter Center in Mansfield, MA, on July 6 and 7. She will sing the National Anthem at New York's Shea Stadium for the New York Mets on June 22.

Alberto Bonacasa '98  

Pianist/composer Alberto Bonacasa of Montara, Italy, has been touring with jazz groups in England and Italy. Visit

Anat Cohen of Astoria, NY, was clarinet and tenor saxophone soloist on the CD It's How You Play the Game by vocalist Marlene VerPlanck on the Audiophile Records label. The disc also features pianist Chihiro Yamanaka '98, bassist Norika Ueda '97, and members of the DIVA Jazz Orchestra.

Composer Damon Ebner of Burbank, CA, scored the feature film DinoCroc, directed by Kevin O'Neill. Ebner has also scored television ads, industrial videos, and documentary films.

Augusto Monk of London, England, released the CD Songs Without Words featuring his keyboard, bass pedals, and melodica playing in a tango-inspired collection. Visit

Bassist Brian O'Connell of Jamaica Plain, MA, plays with the bands Uncle Sammy and the Gordon Stone Band and has been recording and developing a solo show with the Warr guitar. He also teaches music locally. Visit

Flutist Jeremy Stein of Boston, MA, and his band Flutopia, featuring Glenn Zeringue '00, Ruslan Sirota '03, Dan Ingenthron '00, Mike Casano '00, and Tracy Sampedro '01 released their debut self-titled CD. Visit Stein has also written and performed on various television and radio jingles.

Composer Titus Vollmer of Geretsried, Germany, has scored 18 movies for national German television. Two of the movies, American Dream and Missing Allen, have been aired in America.

Michael DiMattia of Los Angeles, CA, arranged and programmed music with composer BT '89 for the movie Monster. His next film project is called The Underclassman.

Ryan Gruss of New York City was named manager of creative affairs at Atlantic Records. He also plays drums with the bands Regia and the Rinse.

Joe Kenny of Redwood City, CA, is a Northern California account executive for MUSICORP. He also plays drums with several artists in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Percussionist Nils van Otterloo of Hollywood, CA, recovered from surgery for a brain aneurysm last year and played percussion parts for the feature film September Tapes, which premiered at Sundance and will have its theatrical release this fall. Visit

Drummer John Sacca of Miami, FL, is currently pursuing a master's degree in music and performing with various Miami artists. He helped to develop the drum set curriculum at Conservatorio de Artes Del Caribe in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Markus Hauckhas released his first solo album titled My Religion is My Life, featuring his original compositions for piano. Visit

Mark Petrie of Waban, MA, was one of two composers chosen to receive the 2004 BMI Peter Carpenter Fellowship to intern with famed TV composer Mike Post. Petrie together with Mauricio Guiloff '04, has also launched MX IN, a music production company in Los Angeles. Visit

Accordionist Victor Prieto of New York City is giving jazz accordion instruction at Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. In addition to leading the Victor Prieto Trio, Prieto does studio sessions and other gigs around New York.

Drummer Michael VanDyne of Williamsburg, VA, and guitarist/ songwriter James Malone '98 of the metal band Arsis released their self-titled debut album on Willowtip Records. Visit

Singer/songwriter Alicia Champion of Redondo Beach, CA, was the winner of VH1's nationally televised competition You Rock with Melissa Etheridge. Champion and Etheridge performed together on the show. Visit

Songwriter Christiane Karam of Boston, MA, was a finalist in the John Lennon Songwriting contest's electronic category for her song "Place in the Sun." She was a runner-up in the contest last year. Karam plays locally with her Middle Eastern band Zilzawa.

Luis Santiago Sierra of Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, is the acting commander of Army National Guard Band stationed in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Last fall, Sierra and his wife had their second child, Aleqk Mateo.

Composer and guitarist Hiroya Tsukamoto released his debut CD, The Other Side of the World with his group Interoceanico featuring Marta Gomez '02, Alejandra Ortiz '04, Dan Brantigan '01, Andrew Kim '03, Moto Fukushima '02, Franco Pinna '00 and Brian McLaughlin '03. Visit