Primary Instrument: Piano
Expertly blending the elements of such great jazz piano traditions as the Harlem Stride of James. P. Johnson, Fats Waller, Dick Wellstood, and Ralph Sutton, the ragtime of Scott Joplin and Eubie Blake, and the New Orleans styles of Jelly Roll Morton, into his own two-handed creation and adding a unique and highly recognizeable vocal style, Paul Asaro has performed across the U.S., Canada, and Europe. He studied music at Illinois Wesleyan University before graduating from Columbia College in Chicago with post-graduate work at Roosevelt University. Paul has since performed extensively as a piano soloist in Jazz and Ragtime festivals, clubs, and theaters in New York, Chicago, New Orleans, Toronto and Montreal, Canada, Milwaukee, Superior and La Cross, Wisconsin, Los Angeles, San Diego and Sacramento, California, and Branson, Missouri as well as Switzerland and Hungary.
Also well known to bandleaders as a strong and experienced ensemble pianist and accompanist, he has played with Jim Beebe's Chicago Jazz, Connie Jones' Classic Jazz All-Stars in New Orleans, drum great Barrett Deems' Big Band, Stan Kenton alum William Russo's Chicago Jazz Ensemble, and Doug Finke's Independence Hall Jazz Band.
Asaro has performed with such jazz luminaries and legends as Marian McPartland, Steve Allen, Leon Redbone, Jon Faddis, Jeff Healy, Jim Galloway, Dan Barrett, Jon-Erik Kellso, Duke Heitger, Brian Ogilvie, and Orange Kellin. He was featured as The Professor playing the music of Jelly Roll Morton along side Vernel Bagneris in the New York Off Broadway production and national tour of Jelly Roll! The Music and the Man. Starting in 1995, Asaro became house pianist aboard the legendary steamboat Mississippi Delta Queen, based in New Orleans. In 1998, he started a long run playing solo piano at Julia's in Wallingford in Seattle, WA. During 2000 and 2001 he toured with his own trio throughout the country, receiving rave reviews and producing two live CD's.
Currently Paul is based in the Chicago area and is touring regularly with Leon Redbone and as a much in demand soloist. Most recently he was featured on a taping at the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee for Jim Cullum's Riverwalk Jazz program on Public Radio, and at the Toronto du Maurier Jazz Festival and Essex, Connecticut Hot Steamed Jazz Festival playing two-piano duets with British Stride great, Neville Dickie.