PAT METHENY was born in Lee’s Summit, MO on August 12, 1954 into a musical family. Starting on trumpet at the age of 8, Metheny switched to guitar at age 12. By the age of 15, he was working regularly with the best jazz musicians in Kansas City, receiving valuable on-the bandstand experience at an unusually young age. Metheny first burst onto the international jazz scene in 1974. Over the course of his three-year stint with vibraphone great Gary Burton, the young Missouri native already displayed his soon-to-become trademarked playing style, which blended the loose and flexible articulation customarily reserved for horn players with an advanced rhythmic and harmonic sensibility -a way of playing and improvising that was modern in conception but grounded deeply in the jazz tradition of melody, swing, and the blues. With the release of his first album, Bright Size Life (1975), he reinvented the traditional “jazz guitar” sound for a new generation of players. Throughout his career, Pat Metheny has continued to redefine the genre by utilizing new technology and constantly working to evolve the improvisational and sonic potential of his instrument.
Metheny’s versatility is nearly without peer on any instrument. Over the years, he has performed with artists as diverse as Steve Reich to Ornette Coleman to Herbie Hancock to Jim Hall to Milton Nascimento to David Bowie. Metheny’s body of work includes compositions for solo guitar, small ensembles, electric and acoustic instruments, large orchestras, and ballet pieces and even the robotic instruments of his Orchestrion project, while always sidestepping the limits of any one genre.
As well as being an accomplished musician, Metheny has also participated in the academic arena as a music educator. At 18, he was the youngest teacher ever at the University of Miami. At 19, he became the youngest teacher ever at the Berklee College of Music, where he also received an honorary doctorate more than twenty years later (1996). He has also taught music workshops all over the world, from the Dutch Royal Conservatory to the Thelonius Monk Institute of Jazz to clinics in Asia and South America. He has also been a true musical pioneer in the realm of electronic music, and was one of the very first jazz musicians to treat the synthesizer as a serious musical instrument. Years before the invention of MIDI technology, Metheny was using the Synclavier as a composing tool. He also has been instrumental in the development of several new kinds of guitars such as the soprano acoustic guitar, the 42-string Pikasso guitar, Ibanez’s PM series jazz guitars, and a variety of other custom instruments.
It is one thing to attain popularity as a musician, but it is another to receive the kind of acclaim Metheny has garnered from critics and peers. Over the years, Metheny has won countless polls as “Best Jazz Guitarist” and awards, including three gold records for (Still Life) Talking, Letter from Home, and Secret Story. He has also won 20 Grammy Awards spread out over a variety of different categories including Best Rock Instrumental, Best Contemporary Jazz Recording, Best Jazz Instrumental Solo, Best Instrumental Composition at one point winning seven consecutive Grammies for seven consecutive albums. In 2015 he was inducted into the Downbeat Hall of Fame, becoming only the fourth guitarist to be included (along with Django Reinhardt, Charlie Christian and Wes Montgomery) and its youngest member. Metheny has spent much of his life on tour, often doing more than 100 shows a year since becoming a bandleader in the 70’s. At the time of this writing, he continues to be one of the brightest stars of the jazz community, dedicating time to both his own projects and those of emerging artists and established veterans alike, helping them to reach their audience as well as realizing their own artistic visions.
Antonio Sanchez – Drums/ Percussion
Born in Mexico City on November 1st, 1971, Antonio Sanchez began playing the drums at age five and performed professionally in his early teens. Antonio pursued a degree in classical piano at the National Conservatory in Mexico and in 1993 moved to Boston where he enrolled at Berklee College of Music and New England Conservatory, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude in Jazz Studies.
Since relocating to New York City in 1999, Antonio has become one of the most sought-after drummers in the international jazz scene. His playing is featured in over a hundred albums, and he has been the drummer of choice for 20-time Grammy winner Pat Metheny and has been part of virtually every project the famed guitarist has created since 2000. Sanchez and Metheny record ten albums together (Speaking of Now, The Way Up, Day Trip, Tokyo Day Trip, Quartet Live, Unity Band, Tap: Book of Angels Volume 20, KIN (←→), The Unity Sessions), three of which have been awarded the Grammy.
Sanchez has also collaborated with today’s most prominent jazz musicians including Joshua Redman, Chris Potter, Christian McBride, John Patitucci, Donny McCaslin, Danilo Perez, David Sanchez, Paquito D’Rivera, Kenny Werner, Marcus Roberts, Avishai Cohen, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Dianne Reeves, Miguel Zenon, Scott Colley, Dave Samuels, Luciana Souza, Billy Childs, and Claudia Acuña, to name a few.
Antonio’s continuous search as an artist has inspired him to compose and lead his own bands and ensembles. He has released five critically acclaimed albums as a leader. His debut, Migration (CAM Jazz, 2007) was called “one of the best new releases of 2007” by All About Jazz and featured an impressive cast which included Pat Metheny, Chick Corea, Chris Potter, David Sanchez and Scott Colley. His second solo effort, Live in New York (CAM Jazz, 2010) was recorded during a four- day run at the Jazz Standard in New York City. New Life (CAM Jazz, 2013), Three Times Three (CAM Jazz, 2014, Europe/2015, US) and The Meridian Suite (CAM Jazz, 2015) followed.
Blessed by fate and hard work, Sánchez’s career blossomed with Birdman (soundtrack available on Milan Records), Política, Manual de Instrucciones, Get Shorty, and in Japan, Kirin Tea, for whom Sánchez’s compositions have become a recognizable part of daily television. The forthcoming Channels of Energy with Vince Mendoza and the WDR Big Band confirms Sánchez’s compositions and drumming dynamism.
Jazz vibraphonist and innovator Gary Burton recognized Antonio’s writing early on, featuring his compositions on two releases, Common Ground and Guided Tour, which included four of Antonio’s original compositions (the former album was named after his composition of the same name).
Antonio has taken part in drum festivals, clinics and master classes around the world, including the “Modern Drummer Festival Weekend”, “Zildjian Day” and the “Montreal Drum Festival.”
He has been a featured cover artist in some of the most widely read drum and jazz magazines in the industry including Downbeat (USA), Modern Drummer (USA and Brazil), Percussioni, Jazzit and Drum set (Italy), Drums and Percussion (Germany) and Musico Pro (USA). Antonio has won many international polls and was ranked #1 jazz drummer in Modern Drummer Magazine Readers’ Polls (for 2015 and 2016) and Jazz Times Critics Poll 2015.
He’s endorsed by Yamaha Drums, Zildjian Cymbals and Sticks (Antonio Sanchez Signature model), Remo Drumheads and LP Percussion.
Antonio Sanchez has made his home in New York City since 1999.
Linda May Han Oh – Bass
Born in Malaysia and raised in Perth, Western Australia, Linda May Han Oh is a bassist and composer who has performed and recorded with artist such as Kenny Barron, Joe Lovano, Dave Douglas, Terri Lyne Carrington, Vijay Iyer, Steve Wilson and Geri Allen.
She has received many awards such as an ASCAP Young Jazz Composer’s award in 2008, 2nd place at the BASS2010 Competition and an honorary mention at the 2009 Thelonious Monk Bass Competition. Linda also received the 2010 Bell Award for Young Australian Artist of the Year and was the 2012 Downbeat Critic’s Poll “Rising Star” on bass.
After graduating from Manhattan School of Music, she has had three releases as a leader which have received critical acclaim. Her most recent release is “Walk Against Wind” features Ben Wendel, Matthew Stevens on guitar and Justin Brown on drums and other guests such as Fabian Almazan and Korean percussionist Minji Park. The Wall Street Journal dubbed this album as “music that is resolutely of the moment… her innovative range and stellar improvisations have made [her] one of the most dynamic rising stars in jazz today.” With this music Linda will make her debut at the historic Village Vanguard as a leader.
Linda has written for large and small ensembles as well as for film, participating in the BMI Film Composers Workshop, Sundance Labs at Skywalker Ranch and Sabrina McCormick’s short film, “A Good Egg”.
She has just currently working to release two projects – a trumpet trio with Ambrose Akinmusire and Tyshawn Sorey, as well as a double quartet album with string quartet,
“Aventurine” – which was commissioned by the Jazz Gallery in New York in City and was officially the last recording at Avatar Studios before closing.
Linda is based in New York City and teaches at the New School and as an active educator she has also created a series of lessons for the BassGuru app for iPad and iPhone. Linda was recently award a Jerome Foundation Fellowship and is currently bassist of Pat Metheny’s quartet.
- “A major bass voice arrives” – JazzTimes
- “On Walk Against Wind…[Oh] takes a long stride forward as a bandleader and composer. The writing is intricate but flowing, tailored to the articulate grace of her band.” – WBGO Take Five
- “Linda May Han Oh is a planetary force and these compositions, so brilliantly crafted, are her gravitational waves.” – Nextbop
- “One of the most fluid and instinctive bass players in New York City.” – SomethingElse Reviews
Gwilym Simcock – Piano
Gwilym Simcock is one of the most gifted pianists and imaginative composers on the European scene. He moves effortlessly between jazz and classical music, with a ‘harmonic sophistication and subtle dovetailing of musical traditions’. Gwilym has been hailed as a pianist of ‘exceptional’, ‘brilliant’ and ‘dazzling’ ability, and his music has been widely acclaimed as ‘engaging, exciting, often unexpected, melodically enthralling, complex yet hugely accessible’, and above all ‘wonderfully optimistic’.
Gwilym’s influences are wide ranging, from jazz legends including Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, Jaco Pastorius and Pat Metheny, to classical composers including Maurice Ravel, Henri Dutilleux, Béla Bartók and Mark-Anthony Turnage. Although principally a jazz artist, Gwilym has composed numerous works for larger Classical ensemble that combine through-composed elements with improvisation, creating a sound that is distinctive and very much his own.
In the last few years, Gwilym has become renowned for his solo performances, releasing a critically acclaimed album ‘Good Days at Schloss Elmau’ in 2011 and touring throughout Europe and to places as far afield as Australia, the USA, Canada, Korea and China to name but a few.
Gwilym has toured extensively with the cream of British and international jazz artists including Dave Holland, Kenny Wheeler, Lee Konitz, Bill Bruford’s Earthworks, Bob Mintzer and Bobby McFerrin. He co-leads the Anglo-American Supergroup ‘The Impossible Gentlemen’ with British guitar legend Mike Walker, Steve Rodby and Adam Nussbaum. He has toured with Classical virtuoso Nigel Kennedy. He is currently on tour with Pat Metheny, Antonio Sanchez and Linda Oh.
Gwilym’s career is unique in spanning a huge range of musical settings, and the fact that he was the first BBC New Generation Artist from a Jazz background, and that his album “Good Days at Schloss Elmau” was an album of the year in 2011 at the prestigious British music award the ‘Barclaycard Mercury Prize’ is testament to this. He has performed with orchestras, choirs, big bands, dancers as well as performing with musicians from diverse backgrounds including the classical, jazz, folk and rock traditions. Gwilym has also written music that has appeared on Television and on stage, most recently composing the music for an adaptation of Edward Albee’s classic ‘A Delicate Balance’ at the Almeida theatre in London. He has frequently appeared on British television and radio and was guest presenter on “Saturday Classics” and guest on “Composer of the Week” on BBC Radio 3, and mentored and accompanied the finalists at the BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year awards on BBC 4 TV in both 2014 and 2016.
Gwilym has lead and recorded a variety of different projects. His debut album “Perception” was nominated for Best Album in the BBC Jazz Awards 2008 and has been critically acclaimed at home and abroad. Subsequent albums have featured various projects, and have been universally praised with reviews citing his work as “sublime”, “flawless”, “impressive” “a marker that few others are likely to equal”.
Awards include ‘Best Band’ at the Perrier Award, ‘Rising Star’ at the BBC Jazz Awards and the British Jazz Awards, and both “Jazz Musician of the Year” and “Best Band” (with The Impossible Gentlemen) at the Parliamentary Jazz Awards. His impressive formal education includes Trinity College of Music (London), Chetham’s School of Music (Manchester) – where he studied classical Piano, French Horn and composition – and the Royal Academy of Music (London) where he graduated from the jazz course with first class honours and the coveted ‘Principal’s Prize’ for outstanding achievement. Gwilym is Professor of Jazz Piano at the Royal Academy of Music, and is very much in demand for his teaching and masterclasses.