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Michael Lawton

Plays: Piano and Keyboards

Michael comes from London, England where he studied classical piano with New Zealand expatriate Douglas Zanders.  He began to play by ear as a teenager and soon developed a keen interest in jazz.  In San Diego, Michael studied jazz with saxophonist and pianist Joe Morello and continued his studies on the East Coast with Rutgers University Mason-Gross graduates David Libby, Noah Baerman and Steve Hudson.  Michael is currently studying with jazz pianist John Bianculli.

In addition to loving and playing jazz music, Michael has a keen interest in Brazilian music, including Bossa Nova, Samba and MPB (Musica Popular Brasileira –everything that came after boss nova).

Michael was a founder member of the Brazilian Band ‘Zazueira’, which played widely in Central New Jersey; has played in various jazz combos including ‘Night and Day’ and has played solo piano and accompanied singers locally and in New York City.  Currently Michael has a regular gig playing jazz and Brazilian music at the Church St. Café in Montclair with guitarist Joe Tonzola.  Michael is a regular ‘irregular’ and sometime piano stand-in at Jim Jasions’ Sunday Jazz Jams at PJs in Highland Park, NJ.  Michael is also a member of the African Drumming and Jazz group ‘Midnight Blue’, which was founded by trombonist and percussionist Nell Sanders and which recently completed a series of performances in New Jersey and New York City.

Michael is excited by what happens at the boundaries between musical genres and is interested in exploring new approaches and contexts for improvisation.  He is available for all types of gigs and genres, including: solo piano, duets, accompanying singers, small and larger jazz groups and other improvisational music.

Contact Information:

Cell Phone:       (732) 447-3255

Home Phone:    (732) 545-4908

Work Phone      (732) 932-8165, Ext. 223

Work FAX:        (732) 932-6535

Email:               lawtonmoss@yahoo.com

Email:               lawton@aesop.rutgers.edu