Meet the current members of the BJU:
Danish bassist and composer Anne Mette Iversen arrived in New York City in 1998, where she produced much of her contemporary work, using the organic staccato beats of her adopted city as inspiration. The summer of 2012 she relocated to Berlin, which provides other outlets for jazz musicians and new opportuneties. Ms. Iversen has produced 11 (eleven) albums as band-leader; three of which are double albums, and including one as composer and artistic director for Norrbotten Big Band. She tours regularly with her groups, and as sideman, in Europe and the US, and performs as guest composer/guest conductor for various big bands.
David Smith is a sought-after trumpet player based in New York City. He has released three albums featuring his original compositions for Brooklyn Jazz Underground Records and Fresh Sound New Talent (Impetus, Anticipation and Circumstance) and has appeared as a sideman on over sixty recordings, including on the 2020 Grammy-winning album Four Questions from Arturo O’Farrill’s Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, Alan Ferber’s Grammy-nominated March Sublime and other albums, with Harry Connick, Jr., Glen Hansard, Jon Gordon, Manuel Valera, Tom Jones and many others. Live performances include with Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra under the direction of Carla Bley, The Who, Glen Hansard and Alan Ferber’s Big Band and Nonet.
“A prime mover in the current Brooklyn jazz scene” (Time Out-New York) and “one of New York’s great jazz drummers and composers.” (Capital New York), Rob Garcia continues to be a strong presence in the New York and international jazz scene as a sideman and bandleader. He has performed and/or recorded with bandleaders such as Wynton Marsalis, Joseph Jarman, Catherine Russell, Noah Preminger, Anat Cohen, Kris Davis, Woody Allen, Howard Alden, Lynne Arriale, John Benitez, John Bunch, Dena DeRose, Chris Cheek, Daniel Kelly, The Ghost Train Orchestra and Vince Giordano. Rob has also collaborated with other top musicians and groups such as: Joe Lovano, Sheila Jordan, Dave Liebman, Diana Krall, Myra Melford, The Kronos Quartet, Ben Monder, Donny McCaslin, Marty Erhlich, Jerome Richardson, Reggie Workman, Bob Berg, Ken Peplowski, Scott Robinson, Howard Johnson, Sonny Fortune, Bruce Barth, Wycliffe Gordon and Chris Potter, among others. He has played on over 70 albums including Grammy winners.
Pianist, composer and Musical Director David Cook was born in San Diego to a musical family and raised in Columbus, Ohio. Now living in New York City, he has enjoyed a varied career of performing, recording and producing. A graduate of the University of Michigan school of music, David has Music Directed and/or played for many notable artists, including 12-time Grammy Award-winner Taylor Swift, Thomas Rhett, Maren Morris, Emmy/Oscar/Tony winner Ben Platt, Shoshana Bean, Lizz Wright, EGOT-winner Jennifer Hudson, Kesha, Utada Hikaru, Halsey, NSYNC, Billy Porter, Joshua Bassett, Blu DeTiger and Shayna Steele. He has also played piano in jazz groups led by drummers Mark Guiliana and Red Baraat’s Sunny Jain, guitarist Greg Howe, saxophonists Adam Kolker and Bob Reynolds as well as 2-time Grammy-nominated trombonist Alan Ferber.
Vocalist and composer Tammy Scheffer has been a creative force in NYC’s vibrant music scene for more than a decade. Hailed by the Chicago Tribune as “innovative, provocative and alluring.” Scheffer lends her voice to ensembles that range from jazz to progressive rock, from improvised music to modern classical music. Most recently she appeared on albums with Stefan Bauer’s Voyage West, Amanda Monaco’s Pirkei Avot, and Joe Phillips’ opera The Grey Land. As a bandleader, Tammy released an album with her sextet on the label Inner Circle Music. Tammy performed at Carnegie Hall and Birdland in NYC, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Revoice Festival in London, MISA Festival in China, San Sebastian Jazz Festival in Spain, Kennedy Center Millennium Stage in Washington DC, Chicago Cultural Center, and many other premier stages.
Drummer Owen Howard has performed and recorded with the likes of Joe Lovano, Kenny Werner, Tom Harrell, Kenny Wheeler, John Abercrombie, Dave Liebman, George Garzone, Dave Holland, Eddie Henderson, Sheila Jordan, Jay Clayton and many others. He has appeared on over forty recordings to date, including five under his own name, and has toured extensively throughout Europe, the United States and Canada. With more than twenty years of successfully leading his own bands, Howard is clearly an artist successfully following in the footsteps of legendary drummers/bandleaders such as Tony Williams, Peter Erskine, Billy Hart, Jack DeJohnette, Paul Motian, Al Foster, Shelly Manne and others.