Combining extraordinary lyric gracefulness and a lithe, serpentine sense of rhythm into a fresh perspective on the meaning of freedom and interplay in and out of the jazz tradition has made guitarist John Abercrombie one of the most influential acoustic and electric guitarists of the 1970s and early '80s; his recordings for ECM have helped define that label's progressive chamber jazz reputation. Abercrombie's style draws upon all manner of contemporary improvised music; his style is essentially jazz-based, but he also displays a more-than-passing familiarity with forms that range from folk and rock to Eastern and Western art musics.
For over a decade, Don Byron has been a singular voice in a dizzying range of musical contexts, exploring widely divergent traditions while continually striving for what he calls a sound above genre." As clarinetist, composer, arranger, and social critic, he redefines every genre of music he plays, be it classical, salsa, hip-hop, funk, klezmer, or any jazz style from swing and bop to cutting-edge downtown improvisation. He has been consistently voted best clarinetist by critics and readers alike in leading international music journals since being named Jazz Artist of the Year" by Down Beat in 1992. Acclaimed as much for his restless creativity as for his unsurpassed virtuosity as a player, Byron has presented a multitude of projects at major music festivals around the world, including recent performances in Vienna, San Francisco, Hong Kong, London, Monterey, New Zealand, and on New York's Broadway.
Time Magazine lauded, Eddie Gmez has the world on his strings". Gomez is one of the most recognized names in jazz bass. His solo works, as well as his collaborations with luminaries such as Bill Evans, Chick Corea, and Paul Bley, are an important part of the cannon of jazz music. Gomez came to fame during his long period with the Bill Evans Trio (1966-1977). He has since worked in a countless number of settings, including filling in for Charles Mingus (1978) and with Steps Ahead (1979-1984), Benny Wallace, Joanne Brackeen, Jack DeJohnette and in commercial settings as a studio musician.
Along with Tony Williams and Billy Cobham, Lenny White created the art of fusion drumming. Being one of the newer innovators on his instrument, Lenny White has found the time to expand and reinvent his career by also becoming a great producer. His producing talents have been sampled by Nancy Wilson, Chaka Khan, Diane Reeves, Rachelle Ferelle and Marlena Shaw just to name a few singers. Chaka Khan was nominated for a Best Jazz Vocal Performance"Grammy as a result of her paticipation on Lenny's critically acclaimed 'ECHOES OF AN ERA' project. He's also produced projects for Pieces Of A Dream, the late great Grover Washington, Gato Barbieri, Wayne Shorter, Wallace Roney and hip-hop artist Big Daddy Kane. Not only has Lenny played with virtually everybody in the music business, he's also managed to stay in touch with numerous innovative musicians, helping create some of the most influential music of the past three decades. Along with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Al Di Meola he helped define Jazz-Fusion with the Grammy Award winning group, Return To Forever.