Ross Hammond - steel guitar
Jay Nair - vocals
Sacramento guitarist Ross Hammond has played on large stages and in small corners throughout the United States and beyond. His sound is equal parts jazz, folk, blues, spirituals and world music.
Ross has collaborated/gigged/recorded with:
Kevin Seconds, Oliver Lake, Pheeroan AkLaff, Vinny Golia, Vladimir Tarasov, Tetuzi Akiyama, Nicole Mitchell, Lizz Wright, Dwight Trible, Calvin Weston, Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Alex Cine, Suzuki Junzo, Amy Reed, Nels Cline, Jeff Parker, Max Johnson, Steve Adams, Ken Filiano, Mike Pride, Catherine Sikora, Scott Amendola, Steuart Liebig, Sameer Gupta, Tony Passarell and more.
Karl Alfonso Defensor Evangelista - guitar
Tim DeCillis - percussion
Filipino-American guitarist/composer Karl Evangelista (b.1986) ranks among a new wave of creative musicians grounded in jazz, 20th century experimentalism, and popular song, exploring the place of multiculturalism and ethnic co-existence in an increasingly post-cultural, trans-idiomatic cultural space. Signal to Noise magazine hails Evangelista as "one of the most original instrumentalists and composers of his generation," and as the creative force behind boundary breaking group Grex, Evangelista has been called "essential current-and-future listening," his music "a near-seamless blend of modern jazz, contemporary structuralist composition, indie rock, and blues rock” (Tiny Mix Tapes). This complex, powerful aesthetic fosters an “otherworldly experience” that is “completely original” (Eugene Weekly).
Evangelista has explored the possibilities of intercultural dialogues across a vast spectrum of academic and professional situations. Evangelista has worked in a wide variety of ensembles with or under the direction of, among others, Achyutan (Marvin Patillo), Scott Amendola, Tatsu Aoki, Steve Berlin (Los Lobos), India Cooke, Fred Frith, Eddie Gale, Ben Goldberg, Matthew Goodheart, Phillip Greenlief, Jong Jang, Darren Johnston, Lewis Jordan, Oliver Lake, Myra Melford, Hafez Modirzadeh, Bill Noertker, James Norton, Zeena Parkins, John-Carlos Perea, Gino Robair, Daniel Schmidt, Marcus Shelby, Aram Shelton, David Slusser, Damon Smith, Karen Stackpole, Moe Staiano, Melody Takata, Wayne Wallace, and AIR co-founder Francis Wong, and has performed in new arrangements of works by Luciano Chessa, Christian Jendreiko, Polly Moller, AACM co-founder Muhal Richard Abrams, and Art Ensemble of Chicago co-founder Roscoe Mitchell. Evangelista’s interest in fostering cross-cultural musical dialogues has also led to grant-based research (’08) on the Blue Notes, a group of South African exile musicians (paper presented at the Guelph Jazz Festival, ’08), multiple guest lectures at UC Berkeley, and continued work at the community-based East Bay Center for the Performing Arts. Via Asian Improv aRts, Evangelista was awarded a 2011 Zellebach Grant for the composition of Taglish, a suite centered on Filipino-American culture; an album of the composition was successfully funded via Kickstarter and released in late 2012. Evangelista holds a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies from UC Berkeley (’06) and an MFA in Improvised Music from Mills College (’09).
Tim DeCillis was born and raised in Rochester, NY, and holds a Bachelor's Degree in music performance from the State University of New York at Fredonia, where he studied classical percussion, jazz drum set and vibraphone, mallet music of Central America, and West African drumming and gyil. From there he went on to earn a Master's Degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he also worked as a part time instructor, teaching lecture courses and private lessons. After maintaining an active playing schedule for several years in Chicago, where he performed with artists including Frank Rosaly, Nu Directions Chamber Brass, the Jarvis Raymond Trio, Lionel O, and Project Film, Tim relocated to Oakland in 2014 and has since forged working relationships with many members of the vibrant Bay Area music scene, including Phillip Greenlief, Karl Evangelista, Jordan Glenn, Tom Weeks, William Winant, Andrew Jamieson, and Nathan Clevenger, and explores his compositions as a leader in his quintet Harbinger, as well as the chamber trio Vertebrate.