Jeff Ciampa Resume

      Contemporary Jazz Guitarist Jeff Ciampa, nonpareil among superb artists deserving wider recognition, has recorded and toured with some of the most demanding practitioners, including Harry Belafonte, Jon Lucien, Dave Matthews, Mark Egan, Bill Evans, Al MacDowell, Ornette Coleman, Lew Solof, to name a few. His fluid melodic style, steeped in the jazz tradition, continues to inspire fellow musicians and listeners worldwide.

Born and raised in central Pennsylvania, the aspiring performing artist commenced formal guitar lessons at the age of twelve. Upon entering college as a pre-med student, his passion for music overshadowed his desire to enter the medical profession. In short time, Jeff found himself studying at the esteemed Berklee School of Music in Boston under the tutelage of guitarist extraordinaire, Pat Metheny. In fact, several years later, he would find himself fronting a trio composed of Mr. Metheny's sidemen who accompanied the guitarist on many of his seminal recordings: bassist Mark Egan and drummer Danny Gottlieb. Further intense studies in improvisation with Charlie Banacos elevated his talent to such heights that in short time Jeff found himself touring with Caribbean icon, singer/actor Harry Belafonte and subsequently with popular jazz vocalist, Jon Lucien.

After a lengthy stint with the aforementioned artists, Jeff befriended long time Ornette Coleman bassist, Al McDowell with whom he recorded three critically acclaimed sessions for Gramavision Records.

In the early 1980's, Jeff extended his music studies with the much heralded jazz guitar master, Billy Bauer while at the same time delving into classical guitar studies with William Matthews.

Eventually, Jeff and his family moved to the bucolic village of Warwick, New York where he cultivated a close professional relationship with neighbor, Mark Egan. For several years, Jeff and Mark with drummer Danny Gottlieb would perform to sell-out audiences for Sugarloaf Music Series on their home turf throughout Orange County, New York. Jeff recorded two critcally acclaimed recordings from this collaboration, Signs of Life and House of Mirrors. Subsequently, the popular trio was booked into major jazz festivals, including the JVC in New York City, the Newport Jazz Festival in Rhode Island, the St. Lucia Jazz Festival, and the St. Kitt's Jazz Festival.

In addition to performing and recording, Jeff is an accomplished writer and has collaborated with Luis Bonfa and Hazell Sherbill on the score for the musical, Carioca.

Founder and Executive Director for Sugarloaf Music Series, Russ Layne says, “For years I would never complete a season of jazz without Jeff Ciampa. His enthusiastic followers coupled with his ability to generate excitement through his virtuosity became the backbone of Sugarloaf Music. Jeff's trio always necessitated a double-night billing…quite a feat for a jazz artist in rural ‘downstate' New York.”

Guitar Magazine says, “Always the true professional, Mr. Ciampa performs with exuberance and aplomb . . .”

The Times Herald-Record wrote “ . . . another jazz gem residing and performing
in the Hudson Valley.”

Updated:  August 25, 2010

Back to Profile