When I was was young and beginning to play the keys. I would go to my corner store baptist church and play the old school hymns and the devotional songs with the deacons leading it. But when I got home, I would get up early on Saturday morning to some Coltrane, Miles Davis, and George Benson. So when learning to play the keys, I would always gravitate to musicians such as Herbie Hancock, George Duke, Alex Bugnon, and Jeff Lorber. So what you have is an old school baptist keyboardist with a taste and flavor for jazz. These were the guys that I sat down for hours to mimic and play like. After so many years, I was able to add some theory behind why I do what I do and I'm bringing this to you. My licks, runs, and tricks are all motivated by these musicians and now I can bring this to you! Incidently, I was named after two well known jazz musicians Ahmad Jamal and Usef LaTeef (my middle name), so it's no wonder why have a love for jazz and can teach and bring it to you.

 

 

 

 

Born in Chicago in 1940, Herbie was a child piano prodigy who performed a Mozart piano concerto with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the tender age of 11. He began playing jazz in high school, initially influenced by Oscar Peterson and Bill Evans. Also at this time, an additional passion for electronic science began to develop. As a result, he took a double major in music and electrical engineering at Grinnell College.

In 1960, at age 20, Herbie was discovered by trumpeter Donald Byrd, who asked him to join his group. Byrd also introduced Herbie to Alfred Lion of Blue Note Records, and Read More.....

 

 

 

George Duke was born in San Rafael, California, and reared in Marin City, a working class section of Marin County. When he was just four years old, his mother took him to see Duke Ellington in concert. "I don't remember it too well," says George, "but my mother told me I went crazy. I ran around saying 'Get me a piano, get me a piano!'" He began his piano studies at age seven, absorbing the roots of Black music in his local Baptist church. "That's where I first began to play funky. I really learned a lot about music from the church. I saw how music could trigger emotions in a cause-and-effect relationship."

By the age of sixteen, George had played with a number of high school jazz groups. He was heavily Read More.....

 

 

 

Some three decades after breaking funky R&B-jazz ground as leader of the pioneering Jeff Lorber Fusion, the Philly-born and bred composer, producer and keyboard legend still believes in the element of surprise. Riffing quite literally on the title of his 2005 Grammy-nominated recording Flipside, Lorber stretches beyond his comfort zone on He Had a Hat, a distinctively eclectic “player's session” with a batch of contemporary jazz's most exciting artists. The disc marks his first recording under Narada Jazz's new affiliation with the Blue Note label.

Long considered one of modern music's most adventurous players and performers, Lorber goes full throttle on He Had a Hat, taking a freewheeling, stylistically varied approach as whimsical as the collection's title (a punchline from a beloved old Borscht Belt joke). Over the Read More.....

 

 

 

Alex Bugnon has created one of the most recognized styles in today's contemporary jazz piano. It is a sultry mixture of contemporary jazz, funk, and R&B with hints of gospel. Even the titles of his CDs create anticipation for a musical experience that is delivered with passion. His latest album, FREE , reunites him with Atlanta based keyboardist and producer Phil Davis. After recording FREE and his last album, SOUTHERN LIVING , in Atlanta, Bugnon calls this city his second musical home. FREE is a refreshing blend of exotic rhythms with haunting, soulful melodies and the signature Alex Bugnon piano sound.

Growing up in Montreux, Switzerland — the home of the Montreux Jazz Festival — Bugnon started playing classical piano at age six. Guided by his father, a jazz guitarist and classical opera singer, Bugnon acquired a love for a wide range of music from Scott Joplin, Thelonious Monk, and Bill Evans to Herbie Hancock, McCoy Tyner, and Read More.....

 

 

 

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