Electric Squeezebox Orchestra with Special Guest Spok

Electric Squeezebox Orchestra

The Electric Squeezebox Orchestra is a 17 piece big band based in San Francisco that plays music composed and arranged by its members. Led by trumpeter Erik Jekabson, the band currently consists of Erik, Henry Hung, Darren Johnston, Doug Morton and Dave Scott on trumpets, Rob Ewing, Danny Lubin-Laden, Patrick Malabuyo and Richard Lee on trombones, Sheldon Brown and Larry Delacruz on alto saxes, Mike Zilber and Marcus Stephens on tenor saxes, Charlie Gurke on baritone sax, and the rhythm section of Dan Zemelman, piano; Jordan Samuels, guitar; Tommy Folen, bass; and Hamir Atwal, Alan Hall and Eric Garland rotating on drums. However, you'll catch many of the Bay Area's top jazz musicians subbing into the band every week. The band's debut CD "Cheap Rent" is available on the OA2 record label.


Joining ESO on Sunday, September 11, 2016 for an evening of music from the Northeast of Brazil, will be alto saxophonist Spok. Inaldo Cavalcante de Albuquerque, aka Maestro Spok, is the leader of SpokFrevo Orquestra, a 17 piece big band. SpokFrevo is known in Brazil for bringing frevo, the state of Pernambuco's Carnaval music, from the streets to the concert stage, and infusing it with the improvisational spirit of jazz.

Frevo's vivid, frenetic and vigorous rhythm stems from the amalgam of several music genres such as march, Brazilian quadrilha, polka and pieces from the classical repertoire. Spokfrevo Orquestra formally emerged as a group in 2003, but its roots go back at least another decade. Spok is the band’s saxophonist, arranger and musical director, fronting a true big band with saxophone, trumpet, trombone, rhythm sections, bass and guitar. In the northeastern state of Pernambuco, from which frevo emerged over 100 years ago, the genre was performed mainly at street festivals. Since their inception, Spokfrevo Orquestra has toured the world, and recently played several groundbreaking concerts at Jazz at Lincoln Center(2013), after which Wynton Marsalis brought his JALC Orchestra to Brazil to perform several joint concerts.

Spok provides a bit of historical background to Spokfrevo Orquestra’s evolution of the style. “Originally, in Recife, frevo was essentially music for dancing, played by orchestras in clubs in the months that preceded Carnival, and on the streets during Carnival itself. People usually didn’t pay as much attention to the musicians or the arrangements as they did to how well the groups could reproduce the classics. Felinho was a saxophone player in the famous orchestra of Maestro Nelson Ferreira who began improvising during their performances. That sparked a major revolution in the way that frevo was played since, for the first time, people began to notice an individual musician’s performance. As frevo musicians today, we have been very influenced by that bold approach that Felinho took, showcasing his performance instead of just being part of a party orchestra.”

For his appearance with ESO, Spok will be bringing arrangements from SpokFrevo Orquestra of the various sub-genres of Frevo, including Frevo da Rua, Frevo Canção and Frevo de Bloco. [Vocalist Sandy Cressman will Join Spok for several selections].

Ian Faquini

Ian Faquini is a 23 year old Brazilian guitar player and singer who resides near Berkeley, California, where he was a member of the renown Berkeley High School Jazz program. At the age of 16, Ian became the mentee of the legendary Brazilian guitar maestro Guinga, who took Ian under his wing. In a very short amount of time, Ian has become one of the most unique and respected guitar players in the San Francisco Bay Area, demonstrating rare chordal technique and a special delicate touch on very difficult pieces. His last few summers have been spent in Brazil, where he has performed and studied with some of that country's highest level guitar players, including Marcus Tardelli, Guinga, and others. Ian recently joined the faculty at California Brazil Camp, and is currently is completing a degree at the Jazz School in Berkeley, and performs concerts in both a solo format as well as duos with saxophonist Doug Pet, flutist Rebecca Kleinmann, bassist Scott Thompson and others. Ian plays and sings originals, as well as a large reportoire of sambas, choros, bossa novas, and Brazilian classical guitar pieces.



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