Dan Sumner keeps a very active schedule as a guitarist, playing and teaching Jazz and Classical music.
Dan Sumner keeps a very active schedule as a guitarist, playing and teaching Jazz and Classical music. His playing can be heard on more than a dozen recordings including the critically acclaimed releases from the New Orleans based group Permagrin. He took first prize in the professional division at the University of Texas at Brownsville International Guitar festival in 2009 with the McPike/Sumner Duo.
New Orleans was his home for 13 years during which he performed regularly in clubs. He has toured worldwide with several acts including Permagrin, The Louis Romanos Quartet, Glyn Styler, and Jesus Christ Superstar. His studies took him to Capital University, the New England Conservatory of Music, and Indiana University, where he is in the final stages of finishing a Doctorate of Music Education. He is currently assistant professor of music education and guitar at the University of Louisiana-Monroe.
Louis Romanos began his career in music in West Hartford, CT winning first chair in the award-winning Pops ‘n’ Jazz band.
This opportunity led to region competitions where Louis won awards for outstanding musicianship. He was also offered a scholarship to attend the Berkley School of Music which he turned down to go to the birthplace of Jazz, New Orleans, to study music and philosophy. He was a professional musician in the Big Easy for 15 years. In that time he performed and recorded with a number of renowned musicians including Gene Bertoncini, Steve Masakowski, Charles and Cyril Neville, Al Hirt, Dave Easley of Brian Blade’s Fellowship Band, Charlie Miller of Dr. John’s band, Jazz Legend Earl Turbinton, Mark Mullins of Harry Connick Jr.’s Band, Tricia Boutte of Galactic, Rich Vogel of Galactic, Skeric, Dave Anderson of the Louisiana Philharmonic and many, many more.
Born in the Bronx, saxophonist Peter Brainin has distinguished himself over the past 25 years as a member of many important bands and also as a composer and leader of his own adventurous projects.
As a member of pianist Joey Calderazzo’s Quartet in the late 1980s, he worked alongside Jeff “Tain” Watts, Ron McClure, and Billy Hart. His work as a sideman also includes 10 years (1989-1999) with legendary pianist Hilton Ruiz. In the early 90s he toured with Mongo Santamaria and in ’95 joined the Chico O’farrill Afro Cuban Jazz Orchestra where he remains a featured member to this day.
Peter has recorded on two of Chico’s GRAMMY nominated CDs and appeared in the film Calle 54. Some other artists Peter has performed and/or recorded with include : Paquito D’Rivera, Bebo Valdes, Randy Brecker, Wynton Marsalis, Randy Weston, Steve Berrios y Son Bacheche, Harold Mabern, and Eddie Henderson. He was twice awarded the BRIO fellowship for Music Composition by the Bronx Council on the Arts. Many of Peter’s compositions appear on his original CDs with co-leader Steve Johns: Ceremony (Cats Paw) and No Saints, No Sinners (Playscape).
Tommy James has been the pianist and music director of the Duke Ellington Orchestra for the past nine years.
Over the years Mr. James has worked with a wide ranging group of artists of many musical genres. Among the outstanding artists and bands with whom he has performed and/or recorded with are The Duke Ellington Orchestra, Lionel Hampton, Joe Williams, Maureen McGovern, Cleo Laine/John Dankworth, Nell Carter, Marlena Shaw, Roy Ayers, Melba Moore, Manu Dibango, Billy Vera, The Spinners, and the Temptations. He has served as music director with the international tour of the Tony-award winning musical “Bring in ‘da Noise”. He has also been musical director for Dawn Lewis, Doc Powell, Bobbi Humphrey, and others. Tommy’s arrangements have been performed by the Ellington Orchestra, the New York Pops, the LA Philharmonic, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Atlanta Symphony, and the Brooklyn Philharmonic.