Michael Benedict & BOPITUDE
MICHAEL BENEDICT & BOPITUDE
“One of the Best Albums of 2013”
Drummer Michael Benedict leads the jazz group BOPITUDE and has released two albums to date. The music focuses on the Hard Bop era of jazz ranging from the mid 1950s through the late 60s. The second album, “Five and One”, features baritone saxophone great Gary Smulyan. In recent years Gary has consistently won all of the major readers and critics polls including Downbeat and Jazz Times magazines and the Jazz Journalist Association Award for Baritone Saxophonist of the Year. Both albums have received critical acclaim and have been in the top 50 jazz recordings played nationwide. “Five and One” received a 4 star review in Downbeat Magazine and made the list as one of the Best Albums of 2013.
Michael studied percussion at the Crane School of Music at the State University College at Potsdam, NY and graduated in 1979 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education. He later attended the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University and graduated in 1990 with a Master’s Degree in Jazz Studies. At Rutgers, Michael was an assistant to Dan Morgenstern, the Director of Jazz Studies and former Downbeat Magazine editor.
Michael has performed with jazz luminaries such as Gary Smulyan, Ralph Lalama, Bruce Barth, Steve Nelson, Rene Flemming, Marian McPartland, Frank Foster, Milt Hinton, J.R. Monterose and Nick Brignola. He was a member of the Planet Arts Trio, the Spike Jones Orchestra and the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra. He has toured the United States extensively, performing at numerous concert halls, colleges, clubs and festivals and has performed in Europe and Africa.
Michael currently teaches high school instrumental music in upstate New York where he directs a concert band and two jazz ensembles. He is the President of the Albany (NY) Musicians’ Union. Michael is a member of the New York State Music Educators Association, NewYork State Band Directors Association, National Association for Music Educators, GRAMMY Foundation and the American Federation of Musicians.
Michael is an Artist Endorser for SilverFox Drumsticks and Dream Cymbals.