Cristian Basso, Producer, Song Writer, Lyricist, Bass, Electronica and Keyboards
In 2007 Cristian wrote the song "All I can Do". In 2008 the song was co-publishished by former Alligator Records recording artist Eric Lindell, and the song was released under the title "Turnin' it Out". This national release was the catalyst for Cristian to produce and write the CD "Alessia's Walk" for the Royal Peeps. Cristian's ongoing catalog of song material continue to be licensed by clients such as the NBA and MTV. He has performed with Leo Nocentelli, Papa Mali, Eric Lindell, PUJA feat. Melvin Seals, Dumpstaphunk, Bill Kruetzman and Particle. In 2009 he founded both Contra Basso Music publishing and the Funk Bunker recording studio in Colorado. Recently, Cristian was invited to arrange, produce and record a new version of the "Rockford Files" theme song for a Warner Bros. Music-Rhino Independent. Cristian is currently a member of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Recording Academy and has a Masters degree in landscape architecture from Harvard University GSD. www.myspace.com/cristianbasso
Leo Nocentelli, Rhythm Guitars and Solos
Known throughout the music industry as a “funkiest, fast-fingered” guitarist Leo is a musician who can control your mind, body and soul. Leo is the lead guitarist, composer, innovator and the musical originator of the syncopated funk-style that put him and his band, the Meters, in the international spotlight while touring with the Rolling Stones in 1975 during the Tour of the Americas and in 1976 during the Tour of Europe . Leo's musical career began at the age of 14 when he recorded guitar for Lee Dorsey's songs, “Ya Ya” and “Lottie Mo”. He also recorded songs with Ernie K-Doe and other recording artists around the same time period. In 2001 the Meters were presented with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Leo has recorded with Grammy Award winners, Stevie Wonder, Bonnie Raitt, The Winans, The Supremes, The Temptations, Paul McCartney, Dr. John, Sting, Peter Gabriel, Robert Palmer and George Duke to name a few. In 2008, Leo released a solo CD titled "Rhythm and Rhymes".
CR Gruver, Hammond B-3, Yamaha Baby Grand, 200 Series Wurlizer
Classically trained from the age of 9, CR Gruver has been down many roads in his journey as a professional musician. Now a full-time resident in New Orleans, he has toured extensively for many years in America, Canada, and Mexico. Exploring every musical avenue from blues and rock to funk and jazz, his versatility has allowed him to play with a wide variety of musicians both obscure and well-known. This versatility is being broadened now in New Orleans as he studies the very roots of jazz, blues, funk and rock. Gruver is now, and will continue to be, an important member of the musical community as his style develops. CR currently performs with various New Orleans artists including Kirk Josephs's Back Yard Groove.
Darren "DRON P" Pujalet, Drums and Percussion
Darren was born in the San Francisco Bay area and grew up in Fresno, CA. He attended San Diego State University. Darren is a well-calibrated combination of finesse and raw power. Currently, he performs with the band Particle who he has performed over 800 shows in 7 years while touring 11 countries. In addition, Darren has a side project with Grateful Dead drummer Micky Hart who says, “Darren is a very powerful drummer with a jackhammer backbeat. He can also play at a whisper all the while maintaining groove depths. I love playing with him. Darren Rocks.” Look for Darren performing live with Particle this summer and fall around the US.
Ty Taylor, Vocals and selected vocal arrangements
Ty Taylor started singing Kumbaya in church at the age of five and has since gone on to share stages with Tina Turner, Eric Clapton, Brian May, Slash Macy Gray and more. He has two top ten hits with his previous band Dakota Moon on Elektra Records. He was a top finalist on CBS’s mega-series Rockstar:INXS. His band, Ghost Hounds, produced by Nile Rogers and Bob Clearmountain, is featured on the video game Rockband 2. He is currently part of a music movement called VintageTrouble.com.
Ron Haynes, Trumpet
Ron Haynes began his career as a trumpeter while in his teens, gigging with various blues artists. He studied at Shaw University in N.C., and North Carolina Central University, where he studied under jazz great Donald Byrd. Ron was the horn section leader for Bernie Mac's HBO Show Midnight Mac with Bernie Mac, later joining the Ohio Players. While playing with Liquid Soul, their cd Here's the Deal was Grammy-nominated for Best Contemporary Jazz Album in 2001. Ron has also worked with Ramsey Lewis, being featured on Urban Knights IV and The Chicago Project, and in 2005, participated in a world tour as a member of Lenny Kravitz's band. In 2007, Ron began his acting career in Northlight Theater and Dallas Theater Center's production of Ella, and recently completed the Guthrie Theater, Pittsburgh Public Theater, Riverside Theater, and Actors Theatre's production of the same play. In 2008, he was the trumpeter and an understudy for Drury Lane's production of The Buddy Holly Story. Ron has released three solo cd's ('Cool Work', 'Can You Hear Me' and most recently 'Journeyman'). www.ronhaynes.com
Johnny “Showtime” Jankowiak, Trombone
Johnny Showtime (John Janowiak) has carved out a niche as an in-demand trombone soloist and section man for a wide variety of groups and recording projects. With a brawny, hard-swinging style that straddles the line between old-school funk and modern jazz, Showtime has a way of making audiences listen.
Showtime is well known for his trombone work in Liquid Soul, in which he played from 1995 to early 2003. He recorded on three of the band's albums, including "Here's the Deal" (2000), which earned a Grammy nomination for best contemporary jazz album. The gig took him all over the United States and Canada, plus Mexico, Japan, Germany and Turkey. After leaving Liquid Soul, Showtime formed his own soul-jazz combo, Soulio, which is going strong in the Chicago area and released its first CD in 2007. Besides playing in Soulio, Johnny Showtime continues to perform regularly with a variety of bands around Chicago, such as the Larry King Orchestra and Tributosaurus. In 2006, he toured Europe with blues/funk legend Lucky Peterson. www.souliojazz.com
Kandace Lindsey, Vocal
"The Phoenix Heat is rising and getting hotter with singer/songwriter Kandace Lindsey. Her voice is described by many as having the sound and feel of "Humanity" in it. The Rock/Soul/Pop international recording artist is taking the world by storm. Kandace, former international Latin Pop Superstar Marc Anthony and International Pop superstar Jennifer Lopez, vocalist, now claims center stage with her upcoming CD "Phoenix Rising". With her Organic Hard charged, Raw, Rocky Soul filled rhythm and lyrics, she will blow you away like the desert wind. " www.kandacelindsey.com
Tony Gulizia, Electric Piano, Moog
Born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska, Tony Gulizia started his music career early at the age of 8 working with his father and, later, with his brother Joey. Tony studied music at the University of Nebraska-Omaha. It was there that The Gulizia Brothers were formed. In 1979, the talented musical duo began working in conjunction with the Nebraska Arts Council in the Artists in Schools program. By 1990, their involvement in music programs for youth had escalated to leadership in the Mid-America Alliance, involving themselves increasingly in Artist in Schools programs spanning a seven state region. In 1997, Tony and Joey received The Governor's Award for Excellence in Education.
Joe Bianchi, Guitar