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Bachelor in Jazz Studies from Ithaca College, Ithaca, NY (2000)
Pennsylvania All State Orchestra, Principal Percussionist (1995)
Pennsylvania All State Orchestra (1996)
ProMark Honor Roll (1996)
Henry Mancini Institute, Drum Set (2000)
Steve is originally from the Binghamton, NY area and began studying drums at the age of 12 with local jazz musician Tony Monforte. He participated in the All State Orchestra and was placed on the Pro-Mark Honor Roll for young, up-and-coming drummers. Steve received a Bachelors of Music in Jazz Studies from Ithaca College in Ithaca, NY where he studied with Gordon Stout, Steve Brown, and Robert Bridge. He was selected to participate in the Henry Mancini Institute where he worked with some of the leading jazz, film, and classical musicians and composers from around the world including Terence Blanchard, Bud Shank, Christian McBride, and Jerry Goldsmith. He has also studied with Steve Houghton, Greg Fields, John Vidacovich, and Harold Jones.
Steve has spent much of his professional career as a freelance musician in New Orleans, LA, Ithaca, NY, and Washington, DC. During this time Steve worked with many of the great local jazz and R&B masters including George Porter, Walter “Wolfman” Washington, Mem Shannon, Anders Osborne, Ryan Burage, and The Louisiana Philharmonic. He has written and arranged for several of his own groups as well including: Otra, El Rumbon, The Mutron Warriors, Reichlen-Battles-Dobry, and Solstice.
Steve has been teaching drum set and percussion for over 15 years and has built a teaching philosophy based on developing different styles, good reading skills, creative expression, and good fundamental technique.
I love method books and written resources.
Most of the books I use are specific to the goals of the individual student. So below is a list of a few books that I like:
Syncopation by Ted Reed
Stick Control by George Stone
Patterns series by Gary Chaffee
The New Breed by Gary Chester
Realistic Rock by Carmine Appice
The Art of Bop Drumming by John Riley
The Commandments of R&B Drumming by Zoro
Future Sounds by Dave Garibaldi
Four Way Coordination by Marvin Dahlgreen and Elliot Fine
Advanced Techniques for the Modern Drummer by Jim Chapin
Studio and Big Band Drumming by Steve Houghton
Universal Rhythms by Dave DiCenso
I have always aspired to be a versatile drummer. Growing up I idolized drummers like Steve Gadd, Steve Jordan, Dennis Chambers, and many of the jazz and latin greats. I learned how to play many styles of music along the way including:
jazz, soul, funk, rock, pop, blues, salsa, samba, candombe, afro-beat, reggae, symphonic percussion, and the avante garde.
I am a strong believer in developing solid reading skills, learning and listening to many styles of music, and playing improvisationally.
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