The Project Uprsing Orchestra began in 2002 while i was studying at Manhattan School of Music (MSM) while preparing for my senior recital. I had been composing big band music the entire 2 years while at MSM and studying under the great arranger/composer Michael Abene and i had quite a repetiore of music that needed to be played. I of course had formed some great friendships with my fellow students while at MSM and i enlisted their services for my recital. Needless to say the recital went well and we were all left with the feeling that "we need to do this again". My father asked me "what do you need to do to take your career to the next level", i replied "record a CD". We recorded out CD entitled "Sleight of Hand" in November of 2004. I began sending the Cd out for review and almost immediately began getting very positive responses, including a very rare 4.5 out of 5 star rating in Downbeat magazine. This allowed us to start sending presskits to various jazz clubs and festivals. This began our long relationship with the New York City Based Jazz Gallery. We began playing the Jazz Gallery in 2005 and have played there several times a year since then. Our band has played at the new defunct IAJE twice performing not only my music, but as the performing band for award-winning composer Rufus Reid.
Over the years, people have moved out of the city, out of the country and have moved on with their lives but the original personnel is surprisingly almost the same. The members of the current Project Uprising Orchestra are:
Saxes: Erica von Kleist, Dave Riekenberg, Felipe Salles, Mike Webster, Dave Richards
Trumpets: Nathan Warner, Colin Bridgestock, Nadje Noordhuis, James de la Garza
Trombone: Luis Bonilla, Nate Mayland, Mike Boscarino, Max Seigel
Piano: Jesse Stacken
Guitar: Jesse Lewis
Bass: Ike Sturm
Drums: Obed Calvaire
Vocalist: Charenee Wade, Yooni Choi, Nathan Hetherington
Each of these musicians represents some of the highest quality if musicians in New York City. Many of them play on Broadway shows, or already are successful touring jazz artists either as a sideman or as a leader. I am honored to have such a high caliber of musicians in the band and i'm also honored to call each one of them my very good friend.
I hope to see you at one of our gigs!