I knew I wanted to be a musician when... Initially hearing a lot of organ group records got me hooked on the music. Seeing photos of how slick the musicians looked was also a big influence. What really made me want to pursue the music was two big experiences: the first was meeting Pat Martino; the other was setting foot inside Ortlieb's Jazzhaus, in Philadelphia. I haven't been the same since.
Your sound and approach to music: My approach to the music changes as does my sound, I have always favored an earthy and bluesy sound that swings; that seems to be the basis for my overall aesthetic. My approach varies, depending on the setting, but I try to be a supportive team player and I always want to add to the overall vibe of what's happening.
Your teaching approach: Everyone is different, you have to find what sticksas long as you can play good time, that is a good foundation.
Your dream band: Wow, this one is tricky. I have been blessed to share the stage with Joey DeFrancesco
, on upright. I would be in over my head but I would love every grooving quarter note. For an organ group it would have to be Billy James and Don Patterson
Road story: Your best or worst experience: One time, at Ortlieb's, the tail piece on my guitar split and my instrument was shattered. Luckily, Todd the bartender lived around the corner and I finished gig on his Strat. Thanks again, Todd.
Favorite venue: Hands down, Ortlieb's was the best.
Your favorite recording in your discography and why? I am very proud of the way my first album turned out; it was made under much duress, but everyone that helped me with the album seemed to believe in the music and gave 110%. I am proud of the work I have done for Mark Adams, Kathy Sledge's Brighter Side of Day and Rhenda Fearington's album as well.
The first Jazz album I bought was: Kenny Burrell and John Coltrane.
What do you think is the most important thing you are contributing musically? Trying to be an honest player and maintaining my musical roots.
Did you know... The first session I ever went too was at Chris' Jazz Café, and I was so freaked out I couldn't get my guitar in tune, so I punk'd out from sitting in.