Brothers Luques (bass) and Zaccai (piano) Curtis follow in the rich family tradition of jazz. The music has often been the beneficiary of sibling bonds. Look no further than the Adderley brothers (Cannonball & Nat), the Heath Brothers (Percy, Jimmy, and Albert (Tootie), the Brecker Brothers, or more recently the Roney brothers (Wallace & Antoine), the Parrott sisters (Nicki and Lisa), and the Jensen sisters (Christine & Ingrid). Jazz music has frequently been the family tie that binds. And as with the Curtis Brothers those are also siblings that recorded and performed together. Based on the brilliance of Completion of Proof, clearly Luques and Zaccai Curtis have joined that auspicious tradition.
The brothers have recorded with a notable discography of cohorts, including Gary Burton, Orrin Evans, Donald Harrison, Sean Jones, Brian Lynch & Eddie Palmieri, and John Santos among others. They dubbed their 2010 debut brother act Blood – Spirit – Land – Water – Freedom (Truth Revolution).Completion of Proof is another title whose definition is omnidirectional. Quizzed on how the title Completion of Proof compliments the sumptuous music they serve up, Zaccai informed: “The title has a lot to do with how this project turned out. We had our hypothesis, completed the experiment that was a success in many ways… Q.E.D. or Completion of Proof.” The disc crackles with a vigor rooted squarely in the hard bop tradition, though most assuredly with diverse 21st century generational twists and turns.
The Curtis Brothers artistic journey began in Hartford, Connecticut. There NEA Jazz, Master Jackie McLean and wife Dollie’s exceptional urban cultural development center the Artists Collective, nurtured the brothers’ early musical impulses, “then David Santoro at the Hartford Academy of the Arts,” says Zaccai. Eventually, both brothers continued their studies in Boston, Zaccai at the New England Conservatory, and Luques at Berklee College of Music.
Luques Curtis was born 1983 in Hartford, CT. After having formal training on piano and percussion, he found himself wanting to play the bass. Luques studied at the Greater Hartford Academy of Performing Arts, Artist Collective, and Guakia with Dave Santoro, Volcan Orham, Nat Reeves, Paul Brown, and others. After high school, he planned to pursue his music career by going to college in Boston. With his talent and hard work he earned a full scholarship to the prestigious Berklee College Of Music. There he studied with John Lockwood and Ron Mahdi. While in Boston he was also able to work with great musicians such as Gary Burton, Ralph Peterson, Donald Harrison, Christian Scott, and Francisco Mela. Luques was also collaborated with his brother Zaccai and form a group called Insight.
Now living in New York City Luques has been performing nationally and internationally with Artist such as Eddie Palmieri, Brian Lynch, Ralph Peterson, Christian Scott, Sean Jones, Gary Burton, Stefon Harris, Donald Harrison, Etienne Charles, Albert Rivera, Elio Villafranca, Francisco Mela, and others. He has recently released an album with his brother called “Blood, Spirit, Land, Water,Freedom” on Truth Revolution Records. Luques was also part of Brian Lynch’s Grammy-winning CD “Simpatico”. You can hear him on Gary Burton CD “Next Generations”; Dave Valentin “Come Fly With Me”; Sean Jones “Roots”,”Kaleidoscope”,and “The Search Within”; Christian Scott’s CD “Rewind That”,and “Anthem”; Albert Rivera’s CD “Re-Introduction”; Etienne Charles’ CD “Folklore”.
After graduating from New England Conservatory in 2005, Zaccai Curtis moved to New York City where he performs with artists such as Ralph Peterson, Brian Lynch, Ray Vega, Antoine Roney, Wallace Roney, Cindy Blackman, Jerry Gonzalez and the Fort Apache Band, Papo Vasquez, and Donald Harrison.
Zaccai Curtis composes and arranges for his quartet, trio, solo piano works, Big-Band, Orchestra, as well as large and small ensembles with strings. In 2001, he was commissioned to arrange Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Capriccio Espagnol” to be performed by his seven pieces Latin jazz ensemble ‘insight’ with the Hartford Symphony Chamber Orchestra. In 2003, he was chosen as a winner of the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer’s competition and each year consecutively through 2006. Zaccai and his quartet were selected by the U.S. State Department to be in the American Music Abroad (Jazz Ambassadors) program two times in 2006. They performed in Bangladesh, Calcutta, Bangalore, Mumbai, Sri Lanka, and Maldives. In 2007, Zaccai was awarded the ‘Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism’s Artist Fellowship’ for original composition.
Zaccai currently performs his music with his group ‘Curtis Brothers Quartet’. He is also the head of his record label ‘truth revolution records’, where music from talented independent artists is released.
Expect a new recording from the Curtis Brothers in 2016.