Note: You can fast forward through the first 15 minutes while we prepared to go live!
Thursday, September 3 @ 7pm
Grammy® nominated vocalist, pianist and songwriter Nicole Zuraitis draws from the traditions of jazz, pop and blues to create music that is rich in depth and heart. As a bandleader, a recording artist and the premiere vocalist of the world famous Birdland Big Band among other notable ensembles, Nicole has established herself as a staple on the New York City Jazz scene and has made a significant mark on the global modern jazz landscape. This musical chameleon brings musical ingenuity and her signature warmth to a wide array of genres and styles. Nicole’s stunning vocal prowess paired with her facility on the piano and her talent as a consummate entertainer prove that she is anything but your average jazz singer. She is currently pivoting during quarantine and performing a weekly Virtual Piano Lounge on Friday, completely based on listener requests.
In 2019, Nicole’s career blossomed even further when her and her husband, renowned drummer and bandleader Dan Pugach, were dually nominated for a Grammy® for their arrangement of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”. Nicole can be found gracing the stages at both the iconic Birdland Jazz Club and Greenwich Village’s 55 Bar weekly. Nicole will be releasing her fourth studio album as a bandleader, All Wandering Hearts, in May 2020 on Dot Time Records. In addition, Zuraitis has assembled an all-star female ensemble to record her project Generations of Her – Women Songwriters and Lyricists of the Last 100 Years.
Dan Pugach is a GRAMMY® nominated drummer and composer living in Brooklyn, NY. He was born in Israel and moved to the United States in 2006. He served as the drummer for The Air Force Band in the IDF while attending the Rimon School of Jazz at the same time. He received a Bachelor of Music Degree from Berklee College of Music, where he studied with Terri Lynn Carrington, Hal Crook, and Joe Lovano, and an M.A in music from the City College of New York, where he studied with Mike Holober and Scott Reeves.
He is the leader of The Dan Pugach Nonet, a nine-piece ensemble playing his original music and his arrangements. This ensemble tours regularly and has played at Bird’s Eye Basel, The Zone in Tel Aviv, Blue Note Jazz, The 55bar, Smalls Jazz Club, The Jazz Loft, The Jazz Estate, Stowe Jazz Festival among respected Performing Arts Theaters across the nation.
In 2011 Dan received the ASCAP Foundation Young Jazz Composer Award for his Nonet piece “Discourse This!”. In the same year he was selected to participate at the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Residency Program at the Kennedy Center, where he worked with Curtis Fuller, Nathan Davis and George Cables. In 2013 he received another ASCAP Jazz Composer Award for his Nonet piece “Brooklyn Blues”.
His debut 2018 nonet release “Plus One” on UNIT Records has made it to top 20 jazz radio charts and includes Dan’s arrangement of Jolene/Dolly Parton which has been GRAMMY ® nominated for Best Arrangement, Instruments with Vocals, alongside vocalist Nicole Zuraitis.
In 2019 he won the BMI Charlie Parker Composition Prize/Manny Albam Commission as part of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop.