Accordionist, Bandoneonistview work
Shinjoo Cho studied piano performance and pedagogy at the Westminster Choir College in Princeton NJ, where she cultivated her role as a solo and chamber musician, as well as an educator in choir, theater, and classroom settings. Intrigued by the music outside her discipline, she returned to her place of birth, Korea, to study Korean traditional music theory and history in 2001. Within a few years, she began playing accordion after a Balkan music immersion in Serbia, and later added bandoneon to pursue her interest in Argentine tango. Since her relocation to Philadelphia in 2003, Shinjoo has been a versatile performer and improviser, collaborating with musicians, dancers, and theater and movie projects. Currently, she is a member of a tango and contemporary music ensemble Oscuro Quintet and the piano/violin/horn trio Vellum.close
Guitarist, Arrangerview work
Tony R. Clef was born in Bellows Falls VT and grew up in nearby Springfield, VT. He has spent most of his adult life in the Boston, MA area. He studied classical guitar primarily with Richard Layman in Brookline, MA and also for a time with Adam Holzman in Austin, TX. Always interested in more than just the standard classical repertory, in the early 2000s he started playing steel string guitar again after a nearly 20-year hiatus and took classes briefly with gypsy jazz player Stephane Wrembel. Clef is also passionate about Brazilian popular music and began around this time to teach himself the rudiments of samba and bossa nova, taking classes in Brazilian Portuguese to dig deeper into the music and culture. Through intensive self-study he has developed a considerable capacity for picking out complex harmonies by ear. Today Tony R. Clef lives in Somerville, MA and works in IT at Harvard University. He posts guitar videos on YouTube.com in his spare time and plays the occasional wedding gig.
Visit Tony's YouTube channel for more of his arrangements.close
Keyboardist, Composer | Ecco La Musicaview work
For the young Jimmy Crew, trips to the maternal grandparents' home meant hours of exploring a vintage player piano. The numerous piano rolls featuring the music of Sousa, Foster, and others were enough to keep anyone interested, but removing the various panels, exposing the insides of the beast, was equally enthralling. An older cousin could sight read from the hymnal. She taught him "Heart and Soul" but made him promise not to play it. Eventually the parents ponied up for a piano of their own and lessons ensued with an old-school European conservatory-trained instructor. At the same time Jimmy joined the Raleigh Boy Choir, and a year later took up clarinet in the school band. Over the next twelve years a solid foundation was laid in classical music.
Records were scarce in the Crew household, but there were a few gems: Sgt. Pepper, Let It Be, The Jungle Book, The Sound of Music, The Clancy Brothers, and Chubby Checker received repeated play. (And the phonograph was disassembled and reassembled many times over.) By the end of high school, Jimmy (now Jim) began getting invitations to play with bands, and although he knew next to nothing about playing popular music, he was able to fake it well enough (and sing) to get asked back. Junky keyboards, drums, amps, and guitars were acquired, opened up, and put back together. Sometimes they worked. The drummer in one band showed Jim the blues scale and introduced him to 70s jazz fusion; classical music would never hold the same fascination.
At UNC-Chapel Hill Jim continued piano studies, and began the long and arduous transformation from a note-reading classical musician to an improvising jazzer. Graduate studies at the University of North Texas followed, and then the plunge into the real world as a working musician. There is nothing like playing music five days and nights a week in a local scene to hone one's chops. Clubs, festivals, theater, dance classes, weddings, malls were the norm, and an arsenal of instruments by Moog, Hammond, Rhodes, and various keyboards de jour was amassed throughout the 80s and 90s. By the mid 90s technology enabled the mere mortal to make decent quality recordings at home, and Jim's ongoing commitment to composing and arranging led to commissions for dance and theater. A roommate and friend from UNT (now in Hollywood) began asking for scores for film trailers. The Triangle Area of North Carolina, a hotbed for new technologies, birthed numerous computer game companies, and Jim found himself on the cutting edge of a new form of entertainment and artistic expression. From writing and producing music in his home studio to recording soundtracks with live orchestras in Los Angleles, San Francisco (Skywalker Sound), and Seattle, Jim has cobbled together a career that could not have been imagined when began his musical journey.
Nonetheless, the pure joy of creating music with living, breathing musicians has no equal. With Ecco La Musica, Jim has found like-minded collaborators with whom he plans to make music for many years to come. Long live live music!close