Welcome! Thanks for stopping by BennettPaster.com. You can find
information here about me and my music. Please look around and enjoy
some of the free mp3s of my projects.
Grupo Yanqui World Tour: February
A quartet version of my Latin jazz band Grupo
Yanqui, featuring Gregory Ryan, Keith Hall and trumpeter
Jim Seeley and me, has just returned from an international
tour as part of the prestigious 2006 Jazz at Lincoln
Center / US State Department's The Rhythm Road program.
We traveled for 4 weeks performing and teaching masterclasses
in Sweden, Russia, Estonia and Serbia-Montenegro.
This trip gave us a chance to foster positive, creative change
on behalf of our country and it enabled us to visit some amazing
parts of the world that many Westerners never see.
Grupo Yanqui rocking
Cafe Von Krahl in
Read about our Grupo Yanqui tour
and see some photos at my new blog: Ruminations
from the Road.
Jan, 2006: Organic!
is currently finishing our second CD "Sweets,"
featuring our new drummer Yuval
Lion. This trio played a a residency at the Baz Bar in
St. Barth's, FWI Dec 27, '05-Jan 8, '06. We played nightly
with legendary Hawaiian singer John Cruz and did two shows
with island favorite Jimmy Buffett. Visit
pictures and more info.
May, 2005: Organic!
selected as Unsigned Artist of the Month by Keyboard
Magazine. Carl Lumma lauded the debut CD by Organic!,
Undoing saying: “gonzo musicianship, telepathic
group interplay, and some mindbending effects combine for
a thoroughly engaging listen.” Find the full text of
the review on our Press/Photos page.
In April, 2005 I traveled to Jacksonville Florida to compete as
a finalist in the 2005 Great American Jazz
Piano Competition. I performed in front of a supportive
audience of almost 1000 people, playing several songs with house
rhythm section that included drummer Danny Gottleib and bassist
Richard Drexler. It was a fun weekend of playing music and meeting
other musicians from around the country. When the music was over
and the judges cast their votes, I was proud to have won 2nd place.
March 2006: I just got word that I've been selected again
as a finalist for the 2006 GAJP competition. The concert
is April 6th- wish me luck!
Along with bassist Gregory
Ryan and drummer Keith
Hall, I have released an acoustic piano trio CD called Skyline.
This album showcases our broad vision of modern jazz. Though totally
swinging, the CD covers significantly more ground. Our insightful,
melodic original compositions incorporate R&B, funk and Latin
grooves with comfortable authority. Plus, we've included our arrangements
of several favorite standards. Skyline is ripe with “the Good
* * * * *
I'm currently working with two of my favorite singer-songwriters,
Tracy and Marko Pankovich (from Sweet
Cane) on separate album projects. I will be co-producing
each artist's project with him and parts of each recording will
be done at my studio, Benny's Wash &
Dry. Stay tuned here for more news about these upcoming recordings.
Gregory Ryan and I are working on a new recording with long-time
Spyro Gyra drummer Joel
Rosenblatt, guitarist Vinny
Valentino and percussionist Gilad. Greg is playing electric
bass and I'm rocking the Fender Rhodes and Minimoog. This "dream
rhythm section" explores original funk, jazz and Latin compositions
in a setting that blends trusted musical connections with the freshness
of new relationships. Saxophonist Chris Cheek also appears on a
few tracks and contributes a composition to the date.