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Sasha Berliner

Sasha Berliner is a musician, composer, producer, and band leader from San Francisco, CA.

Sasha started playing drums at eight years old. She pursued a jazz emphasis at her high school, Oakland School for the Arts, where she picked up the vibraphone at age 13. She is an alumni of the SF Jazz High School All Stars Orchestra and the Banff International Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music. She headlined festivals like the Atlanta Jazz Festival, NYC Winter Jazz Festival, and the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival, by the age of 19.

In that same year, she was deemed one of SF Jazz's 10 Rising Female Instrumentalists for 2018 and was featured by Hot House Jazz Magazine, The SF Jazz Education Center, PBS News Hour, NPR, NBC Boston, and The New York Times for both her musicianship and her activism. She was a finalist for the International Hit Like A Girl program in the Concert Percussion category as well as the cover story for Tom Tom Magazine’s Fall 2018 publication. She was also the first US winner of the LetterOne “Rising Stars” Jazz Award 2018, which enabled her to bring her group to several prominent jazz festivals across the US and Canada.

Sasha has gone on to perform at venues such as the Fox Theater, The Jazz Gallery, Treasure Island Music Festival, Davies Symphony Hall, the Jazz Education Network Conference, the SF Jazz Miner Auditorium, and the Next Generation Monterey Jazz Festival. She has had the honor of sharing the stage with musicians such as Ravi Coltrane, indie rock artist Beck, Vince Lateano, Miles Okazaki, Matt Wilson, and Victor Wooten, performing more recently with award winning drummer-composer Tyshawn Sorey's sextet. She also substitutes for, teaches, and performs with jazz vibraphonist Warren Wolf.

Sasha is currently living in New York City. She is attending The New School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, where she has been a student of vibraphonists Stefon Harris and Chris Dingman. She is an endorsing artist for BlueHaus Mallets and a faculty member at the MalletLab percussion intensive, where she gives masterclasses and clinics. She is also a prolific writer, fulfilling a Non Fiction writing minor at the Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts and self publishing an array of personal essays, poems, and critiques. Her essay on sexism in the jazz industry, “An Open Letter to Ethan Iverson (And the Rest of the Jazz Patriarchy)”, was shared on PBS News Hour and discussed in tandem with the Winter Jazz Fest discussion panel on sexism, featuring activist Angela Davis.

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Album Review

Kaisa’s Machine: Taking Shape

Read "Taking Shape" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

On her captivating second release, Taking Shape, Finnish bassist Kaisa Mäensivu demonstrates her singular talents as a composer and a bandleader. She is again at the helm of her cohesive group, Kaisa's Machine. It has been six years since her debut, years during which she established herself in her new hometown of New York. Her writing has transformed as she draws inspiration from the vibrancy of the city on this set of originals. Mäensivu sets the album's mood ...

Radio & Podcasts

Cool and Groovy Vibes for a Hot Summer Night

Read "Cool and Groovy Vibes for a Hot Summer Night" reviewed by David Brown

This week, a cool and groovy mix for a hot summer night. Sets with string quartets, vibraphone vibes, burning roller-coaster rides, and dancing with ants in your pants. Playlist Thelonious Monk “Esistrophy (Theme)" from Live at the It Club--Complete (Columbia) 00:30 Valaida Snow “I Can't Dance" from Valaida Snow 1933-1936 (The Classics Chronological Series ) 01:30 Duke Ellington “Cool and Groovy" from The Private Collection Vol. 6 (Kaz Records ) 05:02 The Vandermark 5 “Money Down (For Rahsaan ...

Radio & Podcasts

We'll Cross That Third Stream When We Come To It

Read "We'll Cross That Third Stream When We Come To It" reviewed by Patrick Burnette

Ambition can be a great thing in jazz—emphasis on the “can." We look at a mixed bag of releases experimenting with third stream music, Bach, and other elements. The results, like the music itself, are mixed. Still, our guess is that you haven't heard about at least one of these artists yet, and maybe not all four.Playlist Discussion of Rolf Kuhn and Joachim Kuhn's album Impressions of New York (Impulse!) 2:55 Discussion of Jacques Loussier's album Plays Bach ...

Radio & Podcasts

Summer Releases from Sasha Berliner, Lia Booth, Vicki Burns, Sheila Jordan, Naima Shamborguer & More

Read "Summer Releases from Sasha Berliner, Lia Booth, Vicki Burns, Sheila Jordan, Naima Shamborguer & More" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

This broadcast presents new releases from vocalists Sheila Jordan, Lia Booth, Vicki Burns, Naima Shamborguer and the first single from vibraphonist Sasha Berliner's latest project, plus birthday shoutouts to writer Joan Whitney (Behave Yourself, Ain't Nobody Here But Us Chickens), trombonist Natalie Cressman, saxophonist Caroline Davis, vocalists Suzanne Pittson, Lezlie Harrison and Mavis Staples, among others. Thanks for listening and please support the artists you hear by purchasing their music during this time of pandemic so they can continue to ...

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Award / Grant

Percussionist Sasha Berliner Wins Seven-City Jazz Festival Tour

Percussionist Sasha Berliner  Wins Seven-City Jazz Festival Tour

Source: Tony Franquiz

The jazz scene has a new rising star, and she’s a vibraphonist. Sasha Berliner, a 20-year-old musician, composer, producer and bandleader from jny: San Francisco, won the LetterOne RISING STARS Jazz Award, an annual competition that offers up-and-coming jazz musicians an opportunity to make a name for themselves. “We were very impressed by the quality of the group of artists who were in the final round of voting and it was not easy to come to a decision about the ...

"As a versatile drummer and gifted vibraphone player, Sasha wields a technique and musical sense that portends a thrilling career. In her original music, she deserves significant praise." - Seton Hawkins, Hot House Jazz Magazine.

"She has already asserted herself as a creative, genre-defying composer and excellent bandleader with a sixth sense of yet-unheard possibilities." - Burlington Discover Jazz Festival.

A "rising jazz luminary." - The Flynn Center for Performing Arts.




Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Taking Shape

Greenleaf Music



Self Produced



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