Sonando was founded in 1990 by Fred Hoadley to explore new directions in the blending of Afro-Cuban rhythms and Jazz. For over a decade, Sonando has performed original Latin Jazz at festivals, clubs & concerts throughout the Northwest. Our first two recordings, Sonando (1995) & La Rumba Esta Buena (1998), received airplay and critical acclaim throughout the country. Our third, Sonando Tres, was released May 16, 2006 on the Origin Arts label, and is currently being aired around the country.
Sonando's repertoire includes traditional & modern interpretations of Afro-Cuban styles such as Son, Changui, Bata & Rumba, as well as our signature Latin Jazz. We perform on folkloric instruments such as bata, marimbula, tres, congas, & shekere, as well as modern jazz instruments including flute, sax, trombone, piano, bass, & drumset. Our current lineup includes some of Seattle's most experienced musicians, including:
Fred Hoadley - piano, tres guitar
Originally from New England, Fred studied music at Hampshire College and Berklee College of Music, where his teachers included Jaki Byard, Vishnu Wood, and Charlie Banacos . He founded the Seattle salsa band Bochinche in 1983, which reigned as The Northwest's favorite Salsa band throughout the 1980's, and produced the band’s first album, Ahora Bochinche. After Bochinche, Fred toured nationally with the West African band, Kukrudu, and founded the Seattle based Afro-Cuban jazz band, Sonando, whose 1994 and 1998 releases received critical acclaim around the country. He helped anchor the rhythm section of Seattle's Expresión Latina from 1992-1997 He has received grants and awards from The Seattle Arts Commission for educational programs and composition in 1996, and 1998. His love of latin music brought him to Cuba in 1983, 1990, 1993, and 1996, where he studied piano and arranging with Cesar Pedroso and Nelson Diaz, and Cuban tres guitar with Antonio Perez and Jorge Boulet. He also plays piano and tres in Grupo Son, Yerba Buena, and Mambrasa.
Tom Bergersen - congas, percussion
Tom has performed with several Northwest bands including Los Boys, El Conjunto Fabuloso, and Bochinche. Tom's dance company performance credits include The Bill Evans Modern Dance Company and The Pacific Northwest Ballet. His interests in the folkloric roots of latin music led him to Stanford University to study with the Danza Nacional de Cuba under the direction of Regino Jimenez Saez.
Ben Verdier - bass
Ben Verdier is an accomplished bassist and pianist who has thrived on making music since 1985. He is well-versed in a variety of styles: Salsa, Latin, Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, Jazz, Rock, Funk, Ragtime, Classical, and many points in between. Current projects include:Reptet - Hard (Never Smooth) Original Jazz, Cambalache - Seriously Danceable Salsa, Fred Hoadley Trio - Latin Jazz, Cuban Son, Brazilian, Alma Villegas Quartet - Sultry Latin Flavor Chris Stromquist - drumset, timbales & percussion
Chris has performed on a variety of instruments since the age of ten, and has traveled and studied in Africa, Cuba & South America. In 1999 he spent six weeks in Cuba studying bata and conga drumming with Regino Jimenez, Roberto Vizcaino, Jose Eladio & Justo Palladitio. In Seattle, he regularly performs with a number of groups, including Kultur Shock, Sambaleiro, Mambrasa, Yerbabuena & Quasinada, and teaches drumming.
Christopher Stover - trombone
Chris received his M.A. from the Eastman School of Music; and has taught music theory, Composition, Jazz History & Jazz Ensembles at Central Washington University & Yakima Valley Community College. He toured much of the world as lead trombonist with the harry James Orchestra; as trombonist with reggae superstar Pablo Moses and as trombonist, percussionist & arranger with Jambalassy. He has written over four hundred compositions and arrangements in a wide variety of genres, and has appeared as performer & arranger on over two dozen recordings.
Jim Coile - saxophones, flute
Jim returned to the Northwest from Los Angeles where he performed with Latin Jazz bandleaders Willie Bobo and Poncho Sanchez as well as Lou Rawls, Manhattan Transfer, The Four Tops, and many others. He is featured on recordings by Willie Bobo, Joan Jett, The Pointer Sisters, Crowded House, Don Ellis, Jack Mack and The Heart Attack , and The Del Fuegos, and was awarded an RIAA Gold record for his performance on Glen Frey's The Allnighter. He is currently active on the Seattle rhythm and Blues scene, and recently composed and recorded the soundtrack for the video project Over Washington produced by KCTS TV.
The following musicians have played with Sonando extensively over the past decade and a half, and are often included in various projects:
Barney Brazitis - bass
Sonando's newest member, Barney Brazitis, joined the group in 2000. Barney is, for good reason, one of the Seattle area's busiest bassists, having served in many jazz, salsa, latin, rock and R&B units. Not only has he helmed the bass chores in those groups, but he has also operated as an accomplished arranger and percussionist. Barney's formative time spent at the Cornish College of the Performing Arts (where he met Sonando's Leader Fred Hoadley) prepared him for the diverse artistic accomplishments he would later achieve, and sparked his interest in Afro-Cuban music, in which he is a respected authority.
Jay Thomas - trumpet, saxophones
Jay's credits begin in high school in Seattle where he won a scholarship from Down Beat to attend Boston's Berklee College of Music. He soon moved to New York, where he studied with famed trumpeter Carmine Caruso and frequented Village jam sessions. He was a member of Machito's legendary big band and recorded with James Moody. Since returning to the Northwest, he has performed and recorded with George Cables, Harold Land, Herb Ellis, Ernestine Anderson, Diane Schuur, Red Rodney, Nancy King, and the Mel Lewis and Clayton-Hamilton orchestras. He has recorded several albums under his own name featuring Cedar Walton and Billy Higgins.
Mark Ivester - drumset, percussion