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Since graduating from the University of North Texas, Mr. Cruz has been active with recording, producing, arranging and performing with various jazz, rock, world, R&B and classical music artists all over the world. His current jazz and improvisational musical exploits include recording and touring worldwide with the Alex Blake Quartet. His production and arranging work has been recognized and acclaimed by Billboard, Downbeat, Vibe and Rolling Stone magazines.
His various composition works includes a Meet The Composer grant for the improvisational score to "Tetsuo, The Iron Man" which was performed at the Knitting Factory in New York. He also composed the music for the opening and closing ceremonies of the millennium celebration in Times Square, New York City. Mr Cruz's recent forays into film and television music has his work featured domestically and internationally on ESPN, NBC, CBS, Bravo, MTV and HBO television. He composed original music for the television documentaries "Creating Counterparts" which was selected as the best documentary at the 2003 Kansas City Film Festival, "Flag Wars" for PBS television and the film "Palo Alto". (2007) Recent CD production and arranging work include Pete Muller's "More Than This" (2004), Carole Alexis "Osmosis" (2005), Theresa Sareo's "Alive Again" (2006) and Joshua Louis' self-titled EP, (2008) and his second release "My Special Friend" (2009) and the soundtrack to the alt-cabaret production "The Love Show". (2011)
Carole Alexis was born in Martinique and grew up travelling, study, and working as a dancer and singer between Europe, Africa, and the Americas. In consequence, her composition of different cultures manifest itself continuously through her art sharing with the audience the sense of an attachment to universal values. "Osmosis" infuses indigenous roots music from her native Martinique with Pop sensibility and African soul.
Trombonist Curtis Fowlkes has performed on dozens of albums since the early '90s, maintaining a diverse career that spans Jazz and Rock music. In addition to co-founding the Jazz Passengers, he has been a member of the Lounge Lizards, Bill Frisell's Quartet, Charlie Hayden's reunited Liberation Orchestra and with the Duke Ellington Orchestra led by Louie Bellson. Other collaborators include artists like downtown New Yorkers John Zom and Marc Ribot; comedian Harry Shearer; and rock acts including Sheryl Crow, Jeb Loy Nichols, and Cibbo Matto. Fowlkes' debut as a leader came in 1999 with the release of "Reflect" on Knitting Family Records.
Joshua Louis has studied all genres of music through grade school and college, and has trained in both classical and contemporary piano. While at Virgina Tech, Joshua continued his endeavors in music, headlining as an entertainer at various venues showcasing his original songs. Now based in Jersey City, NJ, this singer/songwriter, pianist's debut CD derives inspiration from everyday life to create melodies that are both tangible and touching.
The soundtrack recording to the part concert, part performance piece, part electrifying call to action. "The Love Show" takes its cue from 95-year old activist Grace Lee Boggs who said "linking love and revolution is an idea whose time has come." Featuring five of New York's most powerful and soulful vocalists, including 1999 Grammy Award nominee Carla Cook and internationally acclaimed singer and WNYC/WQXR/Q2 radio host Helga Davis, the piece is a riveting and sublime celebration of the concept of love thy neighbor as thyself.
Pete Muller writes and performs songs with an ear to rhythm and improvisation. Whether it's a large audience, or a small group, Muller's music connects with the listener. "Music is best when it's shared. There's something about getting up in front of an appreciative audience that takes me to a higher place." It's easy to see how an across-the-board taste will pop up in his CD "More Than This". Each track is injected with organic homegrown bursts of energetic pop, jazz, rock and folk, and even a little country and gospel influence now and then.
Sarah Jane Cion in an accomplished pianist who graduated from the New England Conservatory in 1990 with honors in composition and performance. She was the 1st Place Winner of the internationally acclaimed 17th Annual Great American Jazz Piano Competition in 1999. Her debut CD, "Indeed!" features alto saxophonist Antonio Hart, drummer Tony Reedus and other young Jazz giants. "You don't have to listen to pianist Sarah Jane Cion for long before words like 'warm' and 'elegant' come to mind. Her playing is so assured and consistent, and her compositions are as refined and mature as her playing"
Theresa Sareo is a successful recording artist and award-winning songwriter, writing and perfrming music with her rock legends, book authors, renowned painters and actors including Blood, Sweat, and Tears, Dr. M. Scott Peck and Kelly Ripa. Her music has spanned the US, Europe, Asia, and South America. She has appeared on many radio and television shows including Larry King Live and Law & Order, and was featured in New York Magazine. "Alive Again" is especially rewarding because it is about the connection to the spirit of survival -- reflecting on everything from her personal recovery, to broken relationships, to dealing with 9/11 from a New Yorker's perspective -- all in a way that's honest, moving, and relatable.
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