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Comprised of flutist Michael Whipple and guitarist Mark Esakoff, the members of the Ventura, CA-based jazz duo Chasm (pronounced kaz'm) first met in 1987. As a youngster, Whipple's family moved around a lot (his father was a military man), and when his father forbade him to learn the drums, he picked up the flute and also taught himself how to play the recorder, keyboards, marimba, and despite his father's misgivings, eventually drums and percussion. Esakoff, on the other hand, picked up guitar at the age of 13, equally inspired by rock and folk, eventually traveling with his instrument throughout America, Europe, and North Africa, before hooking up with Whipple. Since then they have added band members and continue to evolve with their World Jazz music; blending contemporary jazz within a world music setting....
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NAV magazine voted Chasm's release Panorhythmica a Finalist for the Best Acoustic Instrumental Album of 2000.
”The team of Michael Whipple and Mark Esakoff is first-rate, and the performances by this duo are first-rate examples of contemporary jazz within a world music setting. Excellent.” -Jazz Review, Vol. 168 / 2001

”For lovers of cordially melodic music, these worthy musicians offer a sound of their own.” -All About Jazz / March 2003

”Bamboo Blue is simply too much fun. If these cats didn’t have a blast recording this album, I’d be shocked... if you don’t have a good time listening to this CD, get a life, ya damn grouches!” - Binkelman's Corner / June 2008

”Bamboo Blue is definitely feel good music. You can dance to it and feel like you are at a party in a Peter Sellers movie. The more I listen, the more I find myself tapping my toes.” -Innerchange Magazine, April / May 2008

”Bamboo Blue is definitely an intriguing album. World fusion vibes, along with slivers of 60’s and ‘70’s pop rock, mixed with smooth jazz riffs make the music on the album very entertaining.” -BVS Reviews / May 2008

”Chasm are back with another lively assortment of rhythmic tunes that are sure to keep your feet tapping, or your body bouncing in time to the beat.” -Lux Aeterna Music Reviews / February 2008

”Chasm draws you in to an exuberant, joyful, and joy-filled presentation of World Fusion music. A rhythmic, infectious beat calls for hands to clap and feet to dance with bodies swaying and gyrating.” -Wind and Wire / February 2004

”Even after you've listened to this CD (Panorhythmica) many times, its musical depth keeps it fresh and engaging, as new melodies and beats continue to emerge and amaze.” -Spa Magazine / January 2002

”Sitting on Antonio Carlos Jobim's shoulders, Chasm plays with a distinct Latin jazz flavor. From the loungey backbeat of “Monkey in the Middle” to the easy float of “The Smoothie,” Mark Esakoff and Michael Whipple take the best advantage of their acoustic instruments and their many influences. So think Jobim, but not too much.” -Editor's Review, / 2004

”The songs are filled with complex rhythms and catchy melodies that hide exotic little surprises throughout the album. You never know where this music is going to take you until you get there.” -Innerchange Magazine / June 2002

”Chasm has taken a very passionate approach to their songs. There is a natural purity of sound that has nothing to prove or an ego to boost up and defend. This is the pure joy of sharing your art so that others may take pleasure in it also. Check this one out.” -Awareness Magazine / July 2001

”Congratulations Chasm... a unique and outstanding performance.” -MUSICIAN Magazine / RE: June 1996 issue

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