Masterclass year 2006

In 2001, the Saint Louis Music Center hosted a series of extraordinary Masterclasses taught by national and international artists, students had the honor of learning directly from the best in their field, honing their skills and gaining valuable perspectives. These experiences shaped their artistic paths and helped define the future of music in St. Louis.


Kim Plainfield taught private lessons and taught courses at the NYC Drummers Collective from 1979 until his passing. For much of that period, he served as faculty president. His dedication and expertise have left an indelible imprint on the local music community, inspiring generations of drummers. His passion for music and his commitment to teaching will remain an enduring legacy, continuing to influence and motivate drum enthusiasts around the world. Kim Plainfield will be remembered not only as an outstanding teacher, but also as a mentor and icon in the drumming world.


Enrico Pieranunzi, internationally renowned jazz virtuoso pianist and composer, lit up the Saint Louis Music Center with a memorable masterclass. In 2000, he shared his musical genius and deep knowledge with students hungry for inspiration. Through his smooth notes and nuanced harmonies, Pieranunzi conveyed not only the techniques of jazz, but also his passion and dedication to art. The meeting left an indelible imprint, fueling the fire of creativity and musical expression in the heart of St. Louis.


Scott Henderson was recruited as a guitarist for the Chick Corea Elektric Band along with Carlos Rios, but his tenure lasted only three months due to disagreements with Chick Corea over the keyboardist’s adherence to Scientology. Henderson was replaced by Frank Gambale. In 1984, he founded the fusion group Tribal Tech with Gary Willis on bass, Kirk Covington on drums and vocals, and Scott Kinsey on keyboards. This lineup became famous for their innovative fusion of jazz, rock and electronic elements, helping to define the sound of contemporary fusion.


Rosario Giuliani in 1996 won the “Massimo Urbani” award, while the following year he won the “Europe Jazz Contest” award in Belgium for best soloist and best group. In 2000 he won the Top Jazz in the new talent category for the annual referendum of the trade magazine “Musica Jazz.” His collaborations are countless. Others include those with Kenny Wheeler, Randy Brecker, Bob Mintzer, Cedar Walton, Phil Woods, Cameron Brown, and Joe Locke.


Peter Erskine made his debut at age 18 with the Stan Kenton Orchestra, playing for 3 years. Then, for 4 years, he was a member of Weather Report, contributing to 5 albums, including a Grammy Award with “8:30.” He later collaborated with Mike Brecker, Mike Mainieri, Don Grolnick and Eddie Gomez of Steps Ahead. His musical versatility and mastery on the drums have made him a benchmark in the international jazz scene, helping to define the sound of legendary bands and earning him a reputation as an outstanding musician.


Carl Verheyen is an American musician best known for being the guitarist for Supertramp, the leader of the Carl Verheyen Band, and as a session guitarist in Los Angeles. He was ranked as one of the ten best guitarists in the world by Guitar magazine and won Best Guitarist at the sixth annual LA Music Awards ceremony.


Matt Garrison, son of Jimmy Garrison, noted bassist for Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane, and modern dancer Roberta Escamilla Garrison, spent much of his childhood in Rome, Italy. In 1988, he returned to the United States to live with his godfather, Jack DeJohnette, with whom he recorded. This musical environment deeply influenced him, shaping his artistic vision. Garrison is known for his innovative technique and versatility in the electric bass, which has allowed him to range across a wide range of musical genres. In addition to being a talented musician, he also inherited a sense of artistic expression from his mother, combining it with his father’s technical mastery. His career is a tribute to his family heritage and his dedication to music.


Reggie Hamilton is a renowned bassist with a career spanning across several musical genres. Known for his virtuosity and versatility, Hamilton has collaborated with a wide range of internationally renowned artists. His distinctive style and rhythmic precision have helped shape the sound of numerous successful albums. Hamilton has demonstrated exceptional mastery of the electric bass in both live and studio performances. His experience includes collaborations with legendary and up-and-coming artists, testifying to his reputation in the music industry. With a magnetic stage presence and innate talent, Reggie Hamilton continues to be a prominent figure in the music world, leaving an indelible imprint wherever he performs.


John Abercrombie was an American guitarist who was born on December 16, 1944 in Port Chester and passed away on August 22, 2017 in Cortland Manor. Known for his musical versatility, Abercrombie has left an indelible imprint on the jazz tradition, expanding its boundaries with an innate ability to improvise. A creator of expansive and exciting melodies as well as melancholy, edgy and witty compositions, he has left an indelible mark on the music scene. His career has been marked by collaborations with other great musicians and a rich and varied record production. His music continues to inspire and influence generations of musicians, confirming his status as an icon of contemporary jazz.


Blessed with extraordinary technique, Jack DeJohnette has explored a wide range of musical styles, from hard bop to fusion, free jazz to post-bop. His drumming is characterized by an impeccable sense of timing, great inventiveness, and remarkable improvisational skills. Although he began his career as a pianist, participating in several recordings, he was from his teenage years drawn to the drums, which became his main instrument. In the early 1960s he had the honor of playing with John Coltrane, helping to create some of the most iconic recordings of the era. His versatility and contributions to the music world have made him a legendary figure in the world jazz scene.


Marvin Stamm grew up in a family where the passion for music was palpable. On weekends, his parents would take him to clubs where bands performed for dancing. His aunts, also music lovers, played the piano, contributing to his musical development. However, it was his brother Gordon who introduced him to the world of jazz through his extensive record collection. While attending trumpet classes at school between 1951 and 1957, Marvin listened carefully to Gordon’s records, learning the patterns and art of improvisation with the instrument. At the age of sixteen, he began playing with local jazz bands. Marvin perfected his technique on the trumpet at the University of North Texas, eventually joining Stan Kenton’s Mellophonium Orchestra soon after graduation, an experience that would stay with him until 1963.


After nearly two years, several tours and numerous recordings with this band, Dede Ceccarelli left in January 1964 to resume his role as drummer in the Casino Sporting Club Monaco band, playing with many studio and touring entertainers, including Claude François, he turned to jazz. He had always wanted to be able to play with the jazz greats of the time, and he was able to do so by becoming an active studio musician.


Kenny Werner, his flair for improvisation led him to Berklee College of Music in 1970, where he met and studied with his first piano/spiritual teacher, Madame Chaloff. From Boston, Werner traveled to Brazil with saxophonist Victor Assis Brasil. There he met Assis’ twin brother, Brazilian pianist Joao Assis Brasil. His studies with Joao and Madame Chaloff would lead him to the writing of the book Effortless Mastery.


Since 1991, Saturnino has been Jovanotti’s bass player, whom he met in a recording studio in Milan. Together they have written numerous hits, including “Courage,” “Brute,” “Welcome to the Jungle,” “Lucky Boy,” “I Don’t,” “Rap Serenade,” “Plug Me in,” “Soleluna,” “For You,” “Save Me,” “Think Positive,” “The Navel of the World.” “Noon,” “Safari,” “The Greatest Show After the Big Bang,” “Saturday,” “The Immortals,” and “Kiss Me Again,” the soundtrack to Gabriele Muccino’s film that won the David di Donatello for best original song. Saturnino also played the bass tour in the theme song of the Rai 1 children’s program “Solletico,” performed by the Milan Piccoli Cantori Choir.


At the age of 18, John Thomas began his musical career working as a musician in cruise ship orchestras. This experience allowed him to explore New York jazz venues between 1959 and 1960, where he had the opportunity to meet great double bass players such as Paul Chambers, Ray Brown, and Charles Mingus. He later formed a trio with Amedeo Tommasi on piano and Gegè Munari on drums. While studying at the Bologna Conservatory of Music, he had the opportunity to play with Chet Baker, Amedeo Tommasi on piano and Franco Mondini on drums, after the trumpeter had been detained in Lucca for drug-related problems. These experiences helped shape his outstanding career in the world of jazz music.


Ricky Portera, Lucio Dalla’s longtime collaborator, has left an indelible mark on the Italian music scene as guitarist for the likes of Ron, Eugenio Finardi and Loredana Bertè. His partnership with Dalla was particularly fruitful, so much so that the famous singer-songwriter dedicated to him the song “Big Son of a Bitch,” which became Stadio’s first major hit in 1982. After his experience with Stadio, Portera continued his career as a session man, collaborating with artists such as Nek, Samuele Bersani, and Massimo Bozzi. He participated in the Sanremo Festival in 1996 with Paola Turci for the song “Volo così” and in 2006 with Anna Tatangelo for the song “Essere una donna.” In 1990 he released his first solo album, of the same name, to which saxophonist James Thompson and Giovanni Pezzoli of Stadio contributed.


Marcus Miller is considered one of the masters of funk for his unique performing style, earning him the nickname “superman of soul.” He has collaborated with numerous world-renowned artists, including Miles Davis, Luther Vandross, David Sanborn and McCoy Tyner. Famous for his flawless slap technique, Miller is able to skillfully combine groove and melody. His contribution to the music world is remarkable, both as a talented bass player and as a successful producer and composer. His influence extends far beyond the funk genre, leaving an indelible mark on the history of contemporary music.


Maurizio Solieri is considered one of the masters of funk because of his distinctive performing style. He has been Vasco Rossi’s guitarist for more than 30 years, helping to create songs that have become famous such as “Canzone” (from “Vado al massimo”), “Dormi, dormi” (from “Cosa succede in città”), “C’è chi dice no” (from the album of the same name), “Lo show” (from “Gli spari sopra”) and “Rock ‘N’ Roll Show” (from “Buoni o cattivi”). His collaboration with Vasco Rossi marked an era in Italian music, with an indelible imprint on the country’s rock scene. Solieri has demonstrated extraordinary technical and creative mastery, cementing his reputation as one of Italy’s greatest guitarists.


Bob Stoloff was appointed in 1983 to Berklee College, where he taught scat. In 1984 he was (at the time with Urszula Dudziak, Jay Clayton, Jeanne Lee and partially Bobby McFerrin) on tour with the Vocal Summit in Europe. He also performed with Joey Blake and Bobby McFerrin. His career has been marked by excellence in scat teaching and collaboration with leading artists in the international music scene. Through his versatility and talent, Stoloff has helped spread and enrich the art of scat around the world, cementing his reputation as one of the leading figures in this field.


In 1999, Sylvain Luc founded the Trio Sud together with André Ceccarelli and Jean-Marc Jafet, an ensemble that in 2003 won the French jazz music award for best group of the year. After 2006, he collaborated in quartets with Didier Lockwood, Victor Bailey and Billy Cobham. In 2009 he embarked on a tour throughout Europe with Steve Gadd and Richard Bona. His career has been marked by prestigious collaborations and awards, confirming his talent and versatility as a prominent guitarist in the international music scene. Sylvain Luc has demonstrated extraordinary mastery of his instrument and exceptional adaptability in various ensembles, leaving an indelible mark on the contemporary jazz scene.