Born: April 23, 1975 Primary Instrument: Guitar, electric
I've played with just about every heavy hitter in Chicago.I am also a composer and I only record my compositions or those by a fellow band mate or musician. I coined the phrase 'contemporary-Bop'. I am reissueing next stop jazzonia (originally recorded in 1998) with 7 original bonus tracks. I am starting my own label in December. Not a small label but one that will compete with some of the mid -sized major labels. The focus will be on Jazz, alternative, world and r&b.
I composed the title track for my CD Next Stop Jazzonia In 1996. That track is called Jazzonia. At the time my management team thought that I was crazy to have a ballad as a title track. It is about 9 minutes long but if you are a creative artist you have to go with your heart. I am also sorry to report that the stunning piano playing on this album will never be heard anywhere else. My good friend and mentor Mr. Fred Raekstraw who was Von Freemans' steady pianist turned Ill. He could not make the CD release party Because he was laid up in the hospitol. He passed two weeks after the first recording of this CD was released. After his passing I felt naked and nervous for the first time. I went through a bitter divorce and left music for about 4 years. Slowly the passion has come back and I'm going to produce/play/arrange/compose the best music that I can. I have played/toured with Charles Earland, Jodie Christine, Fred Anderson, Ari Brown and many more Chicago artist.I am also a member of the AACM.
Whenever people ask me about the CD I always say listen to the piano because you will never hear playing like that again. I'm back on the scene here in Chicago. Hopefully i can get my music out to the World this time. RIP FRED love ya man.
My new website should be up and running by mid November.
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Willing to teach:
I've been teaching on and off for about 15 years. I prefer students at least 8 and up because of the finger strenght and coordination involved with learning how to play the guitar. I still teach privately.I used to teach at The Music House In Chicago until I went back to school to study Jazz composition and english. I charge $35 an hour and $20 a half hour. I have a car and will travel to students homes within reason.