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play lo-fi play hi-fi  Ritmo
play lo-fi play hi-fi  Vertical
play lo-fi play hi-fi  Best Buddies
play lo-fi play hi-fi  More Amor (ft Richie Gajate-Garcia)
play lo-fi play hi-fi  Bendecido
play lo-fi play hi-fi  Monica
play lo-fi play hi-fi  Sambamartino (ft Richie Gajate-Garcia)
Erik Jay has refined his smooth but surprising blend of jazz, pop, rock, Latin, bossa, and ballad styles over a lifetime. In the 1980s, he polished his professional chops working with Vivian Grant, pianist and former accompanist to legendary jazz singer Anita O'Day.

After traveling on various musical and artistic pursuits, Erik settled near Los Angeles in 1990 and began the years of musical growth, experimentation, and learning that culminates in the new music. In addition to working on his original projects, Erik has also worked performances and sessions with such luminaries as Abraham Laboriel Sr., Graham Dorsey, Jack Kelly, Richie Gajate-Garcia, Mike Willars, Jon Hartmann, and Sam Mazzola. For three years during the mid- to late-1990s, Erik also served as music director for a small inner-city church.

Erik has developed a style of music that is at once highly personal and highly accessible, with several distinct vocal and instrumental influences held together by a common theme of hope, renewal, love, and relentlessly positive thinking. "But what ties the whole thing together sonically and musically," says Erik, "is my producer, Richard Zeier, at Pearl Music. I have a 'signature sound' because Richard helped me find it and focus it."

Erik married his wife, Lydia, in 1985, and they now live in the Santa Cruz Mountains near Felton, CA, with their Akita-Husky-Shepherd mix, Maximo. His daughter from his first marriage, Monica, and son-in-law, Lamont, have given him two granddaughters, Tiana and Aliyah, and a grandson, Lamont ("Junior"). Erik is also a writer, editor, publication/book designer, publishing consultant, Macintosh maven, and BMI member.
Band History:
Erik Jay works with a great group of talented musicians for both live gigs and studio sessions. Except as noted below, he composed, arranged, and co-produced all tracks; played the guitar, synth, and piano parts; and added live and synth-based bass parts, percussion, and vocal effects.

JACK KELLY (drums) is a leading L.A. session ace and the heartbeat of much of Erik Jay's music. He plays on "Vertical," "Bendecido," "Best Buddies," and "Monica."

RICHIE GAJATE-GARCIA (drums, percussion) is one of the top Latin percussionists working today. He plays on "Sambamartino" and "More Amor."

RICHARD TORRES (drums, percussion) is a versatile drummer living in the Eagle Rock area of L.A. He plays on "Best Buddies."

GRAHAM DORSEY has 30 years of professional experience as a composer, arranger, saxophonist, and bassist, and was nominated for a Grammy in 1978. He plays bass on "Vertical," "Sambamartino," "Bendecido," "Best Buddies," and "Monica."

DAVID RABIROFF, Erik Jay's songwriting partner from the 1970's and 1980's plays the 12-bar guitar solo on "Vertical," also adding his voice to the one-word chorus.

RICHARD ZEIER, owner of Pearl Music Studios and a composer/multi-instrumentalist in his own right, not produced or co-produced the tracks, but contributed to arrangements, voiced the synth instruments to Erik's "ear" model, did a good amount of drum program editing and MIDI magic, and brought focus, cohesion, and a distinct "Erik Jay" sound and vibe to the music. He's the best.
Your influences?
Major musical (composition) influences are Steely Dan (Fagen & Becker), Stevie Wonder, Moacir Santos, Joao Gilberto, Chick Corea, the Beatles, the Zombies, the Classics Four, Burt Bacharach, Faure, Ravel, Debussy, and all the great big bands, too. Major guitar influences are Joe Pass, Pat Martino, Larry Carlton, Wes Montgomery, Lee Ritenour, George Barnes, George Benson, and Richard Jaqua.
Equipment used:
I play a very nicely upgraded Kramer Nighthawk, after having had up to 25 different guitars. I loved my Epi Joe Pass Emperor, but it was stolen. I play an Alesis QS6 keyboard, Yamaha synth, and whatever bass is around (don't have one anymore). I am going to treat myself to a D'Angelico or other high-end jazz box in the next year or so, too... I hope.
Honor Award
EJ (2010)
Second CD
Poster
First CD
Polymath Logo
More Amor
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