"Steve Herberman is an exceptional guitarist...known for his deft counterpoint" --Downbeat Magazine
"The clarity and balance Steve gets with his right hand is amazing". - Jim Hall
Besides the accolades Steve receives as a performing and recording artist, he is also a serious and fluent jazz educator. He has been on the faculty of Towson University since 1999 and has written instructional material for Downbeat Magazine, Mel Bay's Guitar Sessions, Just Jazz Guitar and the National Guitar Workshop newsletter. Steve has conducted masterclasses for several noted university music programs and is on the faculty of Maryland Summer Jazz.
Herberman graduated with honors from Berklee College of Music in 1988. He has since performed with musicians Keter Betts, Buster Williams, Gary Bartz, Chuck Berghofer, Mark Ferber, Steve LaSpina, Jeff Hirshfield and John Pisano. Steve has moderated symposiums with panelists and guitar greats Jim Hall, John Scofield, Ralph Towner, Jimmy Bruno, Howard Alden, Eric Johnson and Martin Taylor at the World Guitar Congress in 2004. Steve Herberman has recorded three CDs as a leader; Thoughtlines (2001) Action: Reaction (2006) and Ideals (2008.) Steve’s latest CD “Ideals” reached the Top 10 of the Jazzweek charts for national airplay. Action:Reaction, a CD of Steve's original music, was chosen as one of the top CD's of 2007 by Jazz Improv magazine. He is a Comins Guitars endorser.
"Steve's improvising is uniquely fresh with melodic ideas that twist and turn and perk your interest with occasional elements of humor as well. There is a constant groove in his solo lines. He shows prowess harmonically and linearly with an abundance of chops and with an exceptional clarity to it all." - Gene Bertoncini
"Steve Herberman exhibits a vast harmonic palette involving uncommon stretches on the fretboard along with a real capacity to burn on fluent single note lines... His sheer command of the instrument puts one in mind of such jazz guitar masters as Joe Pass, Joe Diorio, Lenny Breau, and Gene Bertoncini. His nuanced touch, excellent tone, tasteful, even phrasing and fresh writing style, further elevates Herberman far above the pack of other talented Berklee grads...definitely worth checking out for fans of advanced jazz guitar."- Bill Milkowski, JazzTimes (05/07)
One of the UK’s most experienced jazz educators at degree level, Jamie Taylor teaches guitar and performance on the UK’s longest-running jazz degree program at Leeds College of Music. Between 2007 and 2009 he was Course Leader for Jazz at this institution, before stepping down from the position to devote more time to his playing career.
Away from teaching, Jamie maintains a busy performing schedule, and has worked with leading UK musicians across a range of styles, such as Adrian Ingram, Alan Barnes, Jim Mullen, Gary Potter, Steve Brown, Jamil Sheriff, Richard Hawley, The Pigeon Detectives, and Carlos Lopez-Real. Now a Hofner Artist, he has featured on recordings for the jazz labels Candid and GLP, and made a number of television and radio appearances.
As a freelance clinician, Jamie gives masterclasses and workshops around the UK, and also offers private guitar lessons - many of his former students have now gone on to successful careers of their own.
“An uncanny ability...what more could one want from a jazz guitar?” - Just Jazz Guitar (USA)
“Enormously impressive...Taylor’s playing is full of ideas with a strong sense of direction.” - Jazz UK
Steve Giordano is a jazz musician’s jazz musician – a world class jazz guitarist, composer and educator. Most of his private students are on-the-scene players and educators. Giordano’s master classes are usually directed to university level musicians at the University of the Arts and Temple University in his home town of Philadelphia and as far away as his ancestral birthplace in Sicily at the Accademia di Chitarra Moderna.
The SPACETET, with three CDs to date, usually consisting of guitar, sax, trumpet, bass and drums, is Giordano’s current project manifesting his original music. Drawing from the influences of impressionistic classical composers Ravel and Debussy and the creative genius of innovative jazz players throughout his life, Giordano’s music is both beautiful and complex, characterized always by sensitive melodies and rich harmonies. Giordano’s lush compositions inspire the SPACETET ‘s creative improvisations.
Steve’s musical path too him through blues, swing, be-bop, straight-ahead, hard-bop,post-bop, fusion, progressive and avant garde. He was sparked by Wayne Shorter, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Ralph Towner, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler and Chick Corea. Giordano played rock in clubs in his teens, gradually subverting jazz into the repertoire in his early 20's. His jazz baptism was playing with drummer Chico Hamilton. Following came the organ circuit with Richard Groove Holmes and Willis Jackson, with tours in the U.S., France, The Netherlands, Belgium and Spain.
The composing years followed, listening to arrangements of early Quincy Jones, Gil Evans and Claus Ogerman; being romanced by the Brazilian players Egberto Gismonti, Joao Gilberto and Antonio Carlos Jobim; getting immersed in the music of the more modern classical composers Debussy, Ravel and Barber. Then the reaching of the ECM label artists stretched his ears. What came out of the mix was what has been attributed to Giordano as his particular style of composition called impressionistic jazz, stressing interactive playing rather than solo-conscious spotlight on guitar, modern rich harmonies, and lush and unpredictable passages. His first recording contract was with Muse records in the company of Mike Richmond, Billy Hart and Barry Miles. Then, the formation of the SPACETET, surviving over the past twenty years.
Steve, on his philosophy of music:
“I have been a musician all my life since the age of 6. My music has had many stages of development throughout my life but the thing that remains constant is my musical evolution. I often have to say to a frustrated student "there is no getting to the end of growing so you may as well enjoy the ride". Luckily, I have naturally adopted this maxim in that music has always been fun for me. Even during periods of insecurities, growing pains, and humbling experiences, the actual playing, composing or teaching music always transported me to an egoless place of reverie. I believe in positive thinking and that art, especially one's own, should be more enjoyed than judged. Growing in music is a lifelong process that shouldn't stop, and each stage has its own validity.
My artistic principles have always been of a purist nature in that I do not compromise any aspect of music. In playing, I won't play uncreative music to make more money. I turn down higher paying money jobs in music when I know I will be miserable playing uninspiring music with uninspiring musicians. In composing, I do not write a piece of music to please a particular audience. In teaching, I will not give students quick fixes in the form of pre-set material that sounds good but rather show them how they can think about music thus generating their own creativity. This method is far more time consuming and more demanding of the student as well as myself. Teaching is not a business to me but a necessary undertaking on my part to preserve creative music as an art form as well as my own development as a growing musician.
My strongest hope is for musical evolution. That means letting go of some of the old, dead, been there-done that, and allowing the new, fresh, inspired in. That also means new teaching concepts involving interactive playing; getting students to rely on intuition more than thinking while creating; getting more comfortable with that gray area in art like the power of influence over directness; putting jazz history in it's place: the past. We have been regarding it long enough. In our current timeline, jazz history and all those great players live inside of us. They are part of who we are. Let's trust that and move on.”
Tony DeCaprio, besides being a guitarist in demand in America and Europe (he has played alongside James Moody, Tommy Tedesco, Steve Kuhn, Peter Erskine and Elvis Presley to name a few), is a world-renowned Master instructor who regularly teaches students around the world via the internet . Jimmy Bruno said "Tony DeCaprio is one of the finest guitarists on the planet!". Tony has authored "Gateway to Guitar Improvisation" and "Strategic Picking and the Improvised Line" and he writes a regular instructional column in Just Jazz Guitar
Bassist/composer Drew Gress performs extensively with artists on the cutting edge of contemporary improvised music. His latest project as a leader, 7 BLACK BUTTERFLIES (Premonition Records), features 9 of Drew¹s newest original compositions and was released in MAY 2005. This was the follow up to 2001's SPIN & DRIFT, which received widespread critical acclaim and also featured Drew's pedal-steel guitar playing. He also leads the quartet Jagged Sky; their debut recording, HEYDAY(Soul Note) was released in 1998 and is now considered somewhat of an underground classic. Previously, he was a founding member of the cooperative quartet Joint Venture, producing three albums in the early 1990s for Enja: Joint Venture, Ways, and Mirrors.
When Drew is not leading his own ensembles, he can be heard within those of Ralph Alessi, Tim Berne, Uri Caine, Gerald Cleaver, Ravi Coltrane, Marc Copland, Fred Hersch, John Hollenbeck, Tony Malaby, and Mat Maneri.
(In a previous musical life, he grounded the performances of Buddy Hackett, Phyllis Diller, Zoot Sims, Cab Calloway, and Pia Zadora). Drew has toured North, South, and Central America, Europe, and Asia, and has served as Artist-in-Residence at St. Petersburg Conservatory in Russia and at the University of Colorado-Boulder. The Gaurdian selected a concert given by his Spin & Drift quartet as London's Best Jazz Concert for 2002, and in the same year he received a SESAC Composer's Award; this in addition to previous grants from Chamber Music America, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Meet the Composer. He currently resides in New York.
"I'm plowing through the three Steve Herberman classes I bought last week and I think they are by far the most inspiring instructional material I have come across in a long, long time (and I am a bit of a compulsive practicer, so I get through a lot)." - Nico S. (London, EN, GBR)