Brian Adler – Drummer and composer.

Richie Barshay – Percussionist and accordionist.

Dan Blake – Saxophonist, pianist, and composer.

Petr Cancura – Multi-instrumentalist, composer, photographer, producer, engineer, outdoorsman — polymath.

Cuddle Magic – Indie rockers extraordinaire.

Kendall Eddy – Bassist, composer, professional dog-walker, census enumerator.

Keigo Hirakawa – Pianist, research scientist, and applied mathematician.

Ayn Inserto – Composer and gastronome.

Bridget Kearney – Bassist, composer, and lyricist.

Lefteris Kordis and Panayota Chaloulakou – Lefteris is a pianist.  Panayota is a vocalist.  They are both composers and highly enlightened thinkers, and happen to also be married.

Brian Landrus – Woodwind specialist and composer.

Lake Street Dive – Indie band and corn-maze sherpas.

The Makanda Project – Band formed to champion the previously unpublished, unrecorded music of late multi-instrumentalist, composer and educator “Makanda” Ken McIntyre.

Rick McLaughlin – Bassist, educator, blogger, and family man.

Austin McMahon – Drummer, composer, supreme benevolent dictator of Fractamodi Music.

Kathy Olson – Baritone saxophonist and composer.

Randy Pingrey – Trombonist and blogger.

Quartet of Happiness – Theatrical jazz experience with an educational bent.  Two saxophones, bass and drums, and a lot of energy.

Nicole Rampersaud – Trumpeter, composer, dj, goofus maximus.

Dan Rosenthal – Trumpeter, educator, Alexander Technician.

Carmen Staaf – Pianist, accordionist, and composer.

Rick Stone – Alto saxophonist, educator, frisbee enthusiast, purveyor of happiness.

Tyson Stubelek – Drum ninja.

Ryan Truesdell – Composer, copyist, and producer.

Nicholas Urie – Composer and online dating enthusiast.

Michael Winograd – Clarinetist, composer, bandleader, mad as a hatter.


Charlie Banacos – My teacher, the late, beloved jazz educator.  Though still a behind-the-scenes mystery to many, he has managed to leave his mark as one of the most prolific and influential jazz pedagogues of all time.  Pianists Garry Dial and Barbara Banacos, Charlie’s daughter, continue his legacy with online correspondence lessons.  For a wealth of information about Charlie and his approach as a teacher, see the great doctoral dissertation by my esteemed colleague, Lefteris Kordis, called  “Top Speed and in All Keys: Charlie Banacos’s Pedagogy of Jazz Improvisation”.   Amid the substantial body of Mr. Kordis’s original musicological research and analyses for this exceptional scholarly study are many interviews with Charlie’s former students, including yours truly!

Jerry Bergonzi – Another amazing jazz educator I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time with at The New England Conservatory.  Jerry’s “Inside Improvisation” book series is a menu of incredibly useful tools for the improvising musician.  For best results (everyone, but saxophonists especially), try to arrange a lesson with Professor Bergonzi, and get it straight from the source!

John McNeil – Trumpet players ought to seek this man out, as should everyone else.  We all ought to go see him whenever he plays near us.  Merry trickster/Jazz Yoda, and a bearer of Carmine Caruso’s famed methodology for brass players, as well as his own approaches (see Flexus, co-authored with late trumpet guru Laurie Frink).

Danilo Pérez – One of the great pianists of his or any generation, passionate educator, humanitarian, and friend.  I had the great fortune of studying with Danilo at The New England Conservatory, as well as performing with him on the studio recording and live-broadcast versions of Panama Suite with the Danilo Pérez Big Band. – Get music lessons from me in New York City!   Find online lesson materials, useful links, and other resources for studying the saxophone.