THE PLAYERS

Tom Bowes

Tom Bowes has been a premier vocalist as well as a talented songwriter within the music industry for many years now.  He has had the opportunity and honor to work with hundreds of brilliant musicians over the years on everything from jingles and voice-overs to live concerts, CD’s and film.
 
Tom Bowes is perhaps best known for being the former lead singer of the legendary, soul, funk and R&B horn band, Tower of Power.  For over forty-five years TOP has played to sold-out, international crowds and fiercely loyal fans.  Tom earned his place in their all-star line up when he fronted the band for seven years, touring all over the United States, Japan and Europe. Reviewers consistently praised Bowes’ “high range, powerful voice, and unique versatility," while he led the ten piece powerhouse, known among fellow musicians for their incredible horn arrangements and unmistakable soulful style.  Tom also recorded two albums with them entitled, Monster on a Leash and T.O.P.
 
Tom’s early influences included Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, Aerosmith, Yes and James Taylor, among others, and he started out his career singing and playing guitar in clubs all over Boston and New York.  This eventually led to his playing bass, composing and singing for the band G-Jam, which was prominent in the ‘80’s Village scene.  Known for his ability to make many styles his own, he also became an in-demand session singer.
 
Tom soon joined one of the most popular bands on Long Island, Funk Filharmonik, as their lead vocalist.  He worked with FF, singing the hits of Earth, Wind and Fire and Tower of Power until 1989 when he received that momentous phone call letting him know that he had been tapped to join the actual Tower of Power band.  He packed his bags for California and toured with TOP for the next seven years.  He returned to New York in 1995, and rejoined Funk Filharmonik.  Tom is featured on their recently released CD, Everybody Get Down.
 
In 2000, Tom had the opportunity to honor one of his favorite artists of all time, when he joined the Steely Dan tribute band known as Stealin’ Dan.  He continues to perform with the band, which has since reinvented itself and changed its name to FM.
 
Tom was invited to perform with the legendary band, Blood, Sweat & Tears as lead vocalist.  Following his return from their incredible tour in 2012, he stepped in to lead yet another band called Sir Duke, (New York’s premier Stevie Wonder tribute band.)
 
Tom has also maintained a busy schedule of voice-over and jingle work on such accounts as Verizon, Oprah, Sesame Street, Rover in Japan and Nickelodeon, just to name a few.  His vocals were also featured on the San Francisco Giants theme song and his work has extended internationally with appearances on the hit German television shows, Schmitenander and Ohne Filter.
 
Over the years, Tom has had the pleasure of performing along side a wide range of artists including Ray Charles, Roger Daltrey, Queen Latifah, Alan White (Yes), The Doobie Brothers, Michael McDonald, Orleans, Will Lee, Michelle Shocked and many others.  He can also be heard in some major motion pictures including, White Palace (Universal – 1990), View From the Top (Miramax-2003) and Shaolin Soccer (Miramax-2004).
 
So, while juggling numerous bands, tours, session work, songwriting, voice-overs and of course his beautiful family, he has never forgotten his roots back in the country and his love of acoustic music.  He has written throughout his musical life and is now proceeding in a slightly different direction - getting back to a simpler style of acoustic music.  He is presently working on a solo CD and you can check out some samples on his web site at www.tombowes.com, so stay tuned.

Jason Chapman

Jason Chapman is a much sought after trumpet player, arranger, composer and educator.  He is a graduate of SUNY Purchase and the Manhattan School of Music, where he received his Master’s Degree in Trumpet Performance.  Jason has composed and recorded for Warner Brothers and most recently the Kendor Music Publishing Company.  He has recorded or performed with Richie Blackmore, Jive Records, The Long Island Brass Guild, Spyro Gyra, The Shirelles, Clint Holmes, Beginnings, The Royal Scam, Stealin' Dan, Big Shot, Nine Days, Mario Cruz's Octet, Funk Filharmonik, the Long Island Composers Alliance, as well as virtually every horn oriented cover band in the NY Metropolitan it down since.  He is a founding member of the funk and soul band Funky in the Middle and the original tenor saxophonist area.  Jason lives on Long Island with his beautiful wife and daughters.

Rob Cutts

Rob Cutts started playing the saxophone in the fourth grade and hasn't put it down since.  He is a founding member of the funk and soul band Funky in the Middle and the original tenor saxophonist for the Chicago tribute band, Beginnings. Rob also finds time to write and perform with the Trop Rock band- Young Rebel Goombas, where he is the featured soloist.  His musically journey has always been based in R&B which makes Sir Duke a perfect fit for his section play and big sound. 

Jim Mansfield

Jim Mansfield is a drummer, composer, and NYS certified music teacher whose credits include performances and tours in Asia, Europe, and North America with some of today's most creative artists in a wide range of musical genres.  In addition to appearing on over 40 recordings, Jim continues to perform on sessions for television, film, and other media.  Jim has been an artist-in-residence, band director, clinician, drum/percussion instructor, and general music educator at various schools and music programs in New York City and Long Island since 1997.

 

Steve Briody

Steve Briody is guitarist from Long island who first met Tom Bowes while working together in the Funk Filharmonik and also in a Steely Dan tribute group named “FM.”  He has worked with Carl Fischer, Randy Brecker, Mario Cruz, Dave Valentin and Paula Atherton.  Steve had a commercially successful smooth jazz CD, (“Keep On Talkin”), which was nominated for a “Best Pop Instrumental” Grammy in 2007.  Steve is the author of the popular jazz guitar instructional book "Jazz Guitar Lines of the Greats", published by Jamey Aebersold Jazz.  Steve has a Doctoral degree and is a Professor of Music at Five Towns College where he teaches guitar, graduate harmony, arranging, and dissertation advising.  He's also recently contributed lesson columns for Guitar Player magazine and Just Jazz Guitar magazine.

 

Mark Bonder

Mark has been playing piano for over forty years now, starting at the young age of four years old.  He's played continuously since then, and is continually evolving as the professional musician he is today.

 

Mark grew up playing the popular piano music of the time (e.g. Billy Joel and Elton John).  After getting into progressive rock music (e.g. Pink Floyd, Yes, ELP, King Crimson, and Genesis) in late high school and early college, he discovered the more eclectic sounds of Steely Dan, Little Feat, Jazz, and Fusion, and took up studying both Jazz and Classical music while working on his liberal arts degree at Syracuse.  He later earned a second Bachelor’s degree, this time in Music, and went on to get his master’s degree in Jazz Performance and Composition at Queens College.

 

Nowadays, Mark fills his time with regular practice, composition, meditative pursuits, dance, and playing steadily with 5 different bands, covering a wide spectrum of musical styles.

Sam Powell

Sam counts the discovery of Stevie Wonder’s “Songs in the Key of Life” as one of many watershed moments in his musical journey.  He is excited and pleasantly challenged in holding down the low end for this ensemble of gifted musicians in Sir Duke (with his maple Carvin 5-string LB Bass.)
 

 

Sam’s professional music career started on guitar, bass and piano, but somewhere along the way his passion for wind and brass instruments grew.  He showcases his ability on all these instruments and more via his Christian music ministry, which features original jazzy biblically-themed songs. 
 

 

Sam is well known on the Long Island Christian music scene, having headlined at many of the churches and coffeehouses in the area.  Log onto www.sampowellmusic.com for an overview of his ministry and samples of the lyrics and music he has composed.  Sam is particularly excited about his latest CD, “Go To Nineveh”.
 

 

Sam is the longtime bassist for another Long Island favorite, FM: A Steely Dan Tribute (formerly Stealin’ Dan).  Trained in illustration and graphic design at The School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, Sam is the Senior Art Director for a well-established design house on Long Island.

Catherine DaSilva

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Cat attributes her love for jazz in part to her mother’s uncles who played jazz in NY swing bands in the 1920s-40s, passing down their love (and their chops!).

Cat started singing in jazz clubs at age 16, and was touring Europe and the United States with various jazz ensembles by age 19. At the tender age of 20, she was introduced to Mark Bonder at a jazz jam session. Their paths crossed again shortly thereafter, and she excitedly watched as Stealin' Dan took the stage at Swing Set. It wouldn't be long before she would be invited by Dr. Dave to join the group of ShowBiz kids we now call FM.

 

Cat holds a Master’s Degree in Education and a Doctoral Degree in Music History and Literature. She teaches music in the Syosset School District and enjoys disaster relief work as an American Red Cross volunteer.

Cat is a published author, her work available in the Library of Congress.

Christina Labrador

This exciting singer/songwriter has been called “a powerhouse of energy and stage presence” and she performs regularly in some of NYC's best clubs.  She has recently joined forces with Constantine in Jessie's Girl at the Canal Room.  A personal landmark moment for Christina was entertaining the late “King of Pop,” Michael Jackson, back in '02 at Webster Hall.  

 

She's a songwriter under Mystina Sound, arranging and producing songs for young, up-and-coming pop/R&B artists, teaming up with 2tonebeats and the Cult Jam's, Alex Mosely for a Tori Kelly remix of her acoustic smash, "All In My Head".  Her work is constantly mentioned in NY's premiere music read, GoodTimes magazine as she continues to gain a following with her music.  You can also check her playing with Best of L.I. 2014 top 3 acts, Just Groovin' and classic rock, Fullhouse band.  One of her biggest influences is the incomparable, Stevie Wonder!