‘Why we joined the union’

Volume CX, No. 9September, 2010

Carrie Dowell

Rachel Z

Rebekah Heller
Photo: Liz Linder

Mauricio Herrera

I was previously a member of AFM Local 9-535 (Boston). I lived there for nearly 10 years as a violin teacher and performed with BMOP and the Portland Symphony and did other freelancing. I moved to Brooklyn and joined Local 802, planning on a freelancing and teaching career in New York City.

–Carrie Dowell

I joined Local 802 because during rough times the union provides services and help that are unique to artists. I didn’t want to lose access to these services. Also it helps the older musicians get emergency aid.

My musical goal in New York City is to continue to be a leading force as a jazz pianist and expand my artistry and audience with my newest band Trio of OZ with Omar Hakim and Maeve Royce as we set out on our first CD release and tour. It is exciting to have the opportunity to play with amazingly fine musicians and to grow in this group musically with no limits. This is my 11th CD as a leader or co-leader in this case.

In the past, I got each of my gigs differently. With Peter Gabriel for the “Growing Up” tour, I was called by the management and went through a blind audition process. (They had heard about me through my work with Duncan Sheik through producer Kevin Killen.) With Wayne Shorter, I was hired from my work with Mike Mainieri and Steps Ahead and from my first CD “Trust the Universe.” For Steps Ahead, I submitted a demo.

My principal instruments are piano and keyboard.

Rachel Z

As a recent transplant to New York City, I joined Local 802 as a gateway to performing with more groups in the tri-state area, and connecting with more musicians. I am a member of the fantastic International Contemporary Ensemble, and though I am very passionate about performing new music, I relish the opportunity to play with many different ensembles.

ICE was originally conceived and formed by students from the Oberlin Conservatory back in 2000. I went to Oberlin, and remained close friends and colleagues with many people in the group before I moved to New York City to play with ICE on a more permanent basis.

I play the bassoon and contrabassoon.

Rebekah Heller

The reason I joined the union is because I have been substituting in the Saturday Night Live band for steady bassist James Genus. At the age of 20, my first gig in New York City resulted from a recommendation by Lincoln Goines to drummer Kenwood Dennard. I was asked to become a part of the Jaco Pastorius tribute band that he was putting together with alumni members of Jaco’s Word of Mouth Big Band. I had the honor of playing with alumni members Randy Brecker, Lew Soloff, Alex Foster, Delmar Brown, Butch Thomas, David Bargeron and Miles Evans, to name a few. Alex Foster gave my name along with a recommendation to SNL bandleader Lenny Pickett. My musical goal is to continue to play with as many great musicians as possible regardless of the musical style or venue. My principal instruments are acoustic and electric bass.

Joe Sinaguglia

I am very happy to be a member of Local 802. I joined because of the importance of an organization that helps artists to express their best talents while protecting their rights and developing their careers.

My musical goal in New York Ciy is to learn, and to develop my career to the fullest, expanding my knowledge and merging different musical styles. I want to finish my musical studies at a university in New York. I believe in evolution and professional development, and I am also a music educator.

My main instruments are Afro-Cuban percussion and drums. I graduated from the Jose Maria Ochoa conservatory in Holguin, Cuba.

Mauricio Herrer