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Rocco & Rahj / Bio

Rocco: Organ & Keyboards
Rahj: Guitars & Synth Programming
All Music Written, Produced & Mixed by Rocco & Rahj
Engineered by Rahj
Recording & Mastering @ HOUSE of HOFA Studio
Indian Rocks Beach, Florida USA

They are known as “The Kings of Beach Jazz’…
‘Rocco & Rahj’ is the duo of keyboardist John ‘Rocco’ Altamura and guitarist Roger ‘Rahj’ Keay… a musical collaboration that has been over 35 years in the making. Along with extensive recording and performance experience in blues, jazz, rock, soul, R & B, funk and ambient musical styles, both are also accomplished song writers, producers and audio engineers, having worked with a multitude of world class artists both live and in the studio.

Their sound is best described as ”old school hot jazzy grooves chilled with a cool island breeze of soul”…

No doubt inspired by their NYC roots and a present day Florida beach lifestyle, it is this combined formula that has evolved their captivating sound and distinctive style into an original musical sub-genre which they have dubbed “Beach Jazz”.

Their friendship and musical adventures started back in the year 1974 as reputed hot players in the New York/New Jersey metro area. From the time of their first musical summit meeting which marked the birth of their synergistic magic, Rocco & Rahj were pretty much inseparable going on to build a recording studio and immersing themselves in writing, playing and recording. For the next 4 years they honed their musical chops, inspired by the ‘new groove’ of sounds coming from the Creed Taylor/CTI Records school of jazz artists including Grover Washington Jr., George Benson, Deodato, Bob James, as well as other flavors like Weather Report, Charles Earland, Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters - much of what was to ultimately become the future fundamental foundation of what is now call ‘smooth jazz’. A couple of the tunes that were recorded in their studio opened some doors for a few people including Rahj, who scored a gig as chief engineer at the historic TEMPI studios in NYC, home to resident genius and synthesizer pioneer Wendy Carlos.
It was at this point in 1978 that Rocco opted for a change of climate and headed south for the white sandy beaches of Florida, spending the next 30 years as an audio engineer, musician, entrepreneur and inventor, while Rahj continued his career as a recording engineer/musician working in some of the hottest studios in NYC. Their friendship remained strong, always with continued talk of getting their musical groove going again.

Fast forward to the year 2009…

After suffering burn-out from nearly 3 decades on the NYC scene, Rahj finally had enough cold winters and packed his bags and guitars and moved to sunny Florida. History was in motion and after putting together a new studio, a dream had became a reality and Rocco & Rahj was born… again.

Work on their premier CD “Cool Burn” was started in January and completed by August of 2010, consisting of 10 original compositions that distinctly defined the Rocco & Rahj “Beach Jazz” sound - quickly gaining popularity and extensive airplay on over 200 contemporary jazz radio stations in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Italy, Scotland, Australia and beyond via the internet and FM venues worldwide. The title track “Cool Burn” establishes the benchmark traits of the Rocco & Rahj sound, containing key elements of hip grooves coupled with an aura of cool yet swinging intensity.

Their second CD “Beach Life” (2012) is the continued evolution and refinement of ‘the sounds of Beach Jazz’, featuring 10 new original compositions that are what many fans have referred to as “the soundtrack to summer”. Listening to this CD has been compared to taking a
virtual one hour mini-vacation to a place with white sandy beaches, clear blue waters and warm sunny breezes. Starting with the crisp upbeat positive vibe of the title track “Beach Life”, all the way through to the pulsating percussive rhythm and grooves of “South Beach Samba”, this recording captures the essence of Rocco & Rahj’s ongoing mission to give the listener a reprieve from the craziness and stresses of everyday life via the magic of their music.

“Our wish is that our sound transports you to a place of happiness, peace and harmony via our musical vibe – one that we hope you will love as much as we do in creating it…”

“Rocco & Rahj have not only created a new sub-genre in music with ‘Beach Jazz’, they now officially begin their reign as the undisputed kings!”
Ted Hasiuk – Smooth Jazz Café Radio, Canada

Rocco & Rahj music is available at www.roccoandrahj.com

Cheers!> Enjoy the music… ))) Rocco & Rahj

General Info

Band Members
John "Rocco" Altamura - Organ & Keyboards > Roger "Rahj" Keay - Guitars, Synths & Programming
Artist Name
Rocco & Rahj
Profile Page
Active Since
Jazz / Beach Jazz

Contact Info

Indian Rocks Beach, FL