For as long as I can remember, I’ve heard music in my head and felt the urge to perform.
My musical hero, session guitarist Cornell Dupree, once stated that he sought to make music that felt good and sounded good. I am convinced that such a simple and honest approach to the medium both resonates with audiences and provides the key to creating music of timeless quality.
I was born in Santa Rosa, California. A few years later in Boonville, I picked up the guitar and learned to play some Chuck Berry riffs with the help of local teacher Pilar Duran. My skills did not progress much until my teenage years, when my brother and sister moved away to college, leaving me bored and restless in a hamlet near the French Alps. I began to study music seriously — an endeavor that continues to this day.
While attending Duke University, I played guitar in as soul, blues, and fusion band called the Soulless Dogs with my friends Ben Shelton (Benny Smith), Rob DiMauro (Kenny Roby), Spike Brehm, and Brett Bowers. We jammed frequently with incredible musicians such as Will McFarlane (Bonnie Raitt), Daniel Anderson (Gracie Curran, Gina Sicilia), Evan MacLean, and Pulsar Lee. And for a wild minute, I was the lead guitarist for Indie rock outfit Luego.
I lived in Portland, Maine from 2010 to 2013. I collaborated and performed with Adam Frederick (Jason Spooner Band, Fog Cutters), Clara Junkens (Marion Grace), the Downeast Soul Coalition, and multi-instrumentalist Kristian Terrison. I also played in a grunge-jazz-dub band called Food with Zak Bigelow, Matt Baldwin, and Tom Meehan (Five of the Eyes).
I began singing in 2013 while living in Nairobi, Kenya. Working for a refugee advocacy organization by day, I learned to holler by night as the leader of the house band of a nightclub called “the Blues.” During this time I decided to give up my budding career as a humanitarian and to pursue music full time — or as close to full time as I can manage.
Now I live in Wrocław, Poland. I record and perform under my own name and also in support of Ukrainian singer Valentina Vatutina. I work with some of the best musicians in the country such as Bartosz Niebielecki, Andrzej Stagraczyński, Piotr Świętoniowski, Andrzej Waśniewski, Rafał Białas, Tomasz Burzynski, Sebastian Lobos, Bartłomiej Libera, and Marcin Spera.
My goal is to keep spreading my love of the American improvised music tradition to audiences and fellow musicians across the world. This website will give me the opportunity to share my music, experiences, and reflections as I continue this adventure.