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Peter Szendofi

I was born in Budapest in 1968. I grew up in a family where music filled our everyday life, just like it is obvious in most of musicians life. My mother is a conductor and assistant professor at the Liszt Ferenc Music Academy, and a teacher at the Theatrical and Film Academy in Budapest, Hungary. My father handcrafts and repairs musical instruments. Despite this musical milieu in my family I was initially interested in fine arts, and I started to play music fairly late, when I was 16. I’ve studied classical music first at the conservatoire and I have learned to play on a drumset by myself. Back in those days rock and jazz were forbidden genres in the instruction of classical music and my teachers considered me kind of a black sheep for that. I have listened to many-many records and Billy Cobham had a great influence on me. I started to put down Cobham’s songs note by note. I tell ya, it was not an easy thing back than. My very first drum teacher was Emil Riha (my mother’s colleague) who is a widely recognized musician in the theatrical profession. I am so grateful to him for his exactitude and sophisticated musical taste that he taught me, which significantly determined my musical attitude. I graduated from the faculty of Jazz at the Music Academy in 1992 and I’ve been playing in several jazz groups and bands since then. I formed my first band right after graduation, named Fusio Quartet and we played my compositions. Our first record “Life Rhythm” was released in 1995. At this time I felt I want a lot more than I had at that time, so I decided to pack my bag and set out on a great journey to New York, United States to the homeland of the genre. I received a holistic scholarship from the Drummers Collective for a semester so I left to New York in 1995 to learn from the best ones like Dave Weckl, Dennis Chambers, Steve Smith, Zach Danziger, Freddie Gruber, Kim Plainfield and I took private lessons from Jojo Mayer, as well. After returning to Hungary in 1999, Fusio Quartet’s next album was released titled ‘Attitudes’ (Periferic Records). In September 2000 a new member joined the Fusio Quartet, the keyboard player Romhányi Áron. Therefore we changed the name to Fusio Group and began to play even more progressive jazz fusion with lots of amazing free jazz improvisation.

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