NYC Musician's Union Local 802 Announces Winner of Four-Year $40,000 Emerging Artists Project Grant: The Roxy Coss Quintet!

By: Apr. 02, 2018

NYC Musician's Union Local 802 Announces Winner of Four-Year $40,000 Emerging Artists Project Grant: The Roxy Coss Quintet!

The Associated Musicians of Greater New York, Local 802 AFM today announced that the Roxy Coss Quintet is the winner of the union's groundbreaking Emerging Artists Project (EAP). The four-year grant program, launched in partnership with Orchestra of St. Luke's (OSL), has been designed to provide support to help more firmly establish the band in New York City-and further efforts to ensure that all professional musicians can afford to live, work and raise a family in New York.

Launched in December, the competition garnered over 52 applicant ensembles comprising over 400 musicians, whose submissions were evaluated by a distinguished jury of professional musicians including pianist and producer Gil Goldstein, pianist and music director Ray Chew, trombonist Weston Sprott, violinist Erica Kiesewetter, jazz vibraphonist Stefon Harris, saxophonist Ted Nash, guitarist Marc Ribot, jazz composer Maria Schneider and clarinetist David Krakauer, and among many others.

"Our ensemble is thrilled that we've been selected," said saxophonist and bandleader Roxy Coss. "Musicians across New York City know how difficult it can be for an emerging ensemble to get a firm foothold in the industry and make a living, but this grant is going to go a long way towards helping us thrive. The support and structure of the Emerging Artists Project grant is providing the framework we need to progress and mature as an ensemble, and it's an honor to be a part of an effort to highlight fair payment and treatment in the arts as well."

"We're thrilled to announce The Roxy Coss Quintet as the winner of our Emerging Artists Project grant," said Tino Gagliardi, president, Local 802 American Federation of Musicians. "This ensemble is the type of group that we are working to find innovative and effective ways to support. The response among the music community to this program has been overwhelmingly positive because it's been designed to support musicians and ensembles so that they can make a fair living, and at the end of the day, we believe this program will help in our overall efforts to raise the wage floor for all musicians. The Roxy Coss Quinet is already on its way to notoriety and success, and we're happy to be helping them take the next step."


The competition was open to bands and ensembles of three or more musicians in any genre with at least a one-year history of performances. The winning quintet will receive $10,000 per year to help pay fair wages, access health care and pension benefits, gain access to business support, mentorship, the union's rehearsal space and other resources, as well as discounted rehearsal space and recording studio access provided by OSL at The DiMenna Center for Classical Music, the rehearsal, recording, and performance facility they own and operate in Hell's Kitchen. The DiMenna Center serves more than 500 ensembles and more than 30,000 musicians each year, fulfilling OSL's dedication to providing service to New York City's musicians.

"Orchestra of St. Luke's, which is made up of Local 802 members, wants to congratulate The Roxy Coss Quinet," said James Roe, President and Executive Director of Orchestra of St. Luke's. "We look forward to working with the band and seeing them at The DiMenna Center, which we established in part to provide emerging artists and ensembles the opportunity to rehearse, record and perform in affordable, state-of-the-art spaces. This partnership with Local 802 is an exciting one, as we are all eager to help emerging ensembles like The Roxy Coss Quintet take the next steps in their careers."

To apply, ensembles and bands submitted an application and materials featuring examples and documentation performances and business plan. Performance examples and recordings of the applicant ensembles were uploaded to the application site and were reviewed by the independent jurors drawn from the New York professional music community with expertise in each applicant's style of music and by the leadership of the union. Membership in Local 802 was not required at time of application, though a collective bargaining agreement is a stated requirement to receive grant funding.

About the Roxy Coss Quintet

The Roxy Coss Quintet is a New York-based modern jazz ensemble led by Saxophonist & Woodwind Player Roxy Coss, with Guitarist Alex Wintz, Pianist Miki Yamanaka, Bassist Rick Rosato, and Drummer Jimmy Macbride. The band primarily performs Coss' original compositions, along with her arrangements of tunes from the modern jazz, pop, and standards songbooks. The Quintet has headlined at the Newport, Earshot, and Ballard Jazz Festivals, Jazz at Lincoln Center's Appel Room for the 2016 ASCAP Foundation Awards, and was featured at the 2017 Midwest Clinic's "Music & Arts" Reception. The band has performed at many major venues in NYC including Jazz Standard, 55 Bar, Smalls, Zinc Bar and Cornelia Street Underground; as well as touring nationally and appearing at clubs around the region and nation.

Musician, Composer, Arranger, Bandleader, Educator and Activist Roxy Coss has become one of the most unique and innovative Saxophonists on the scene. Winner of a 2016 ASCAP Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award, the Downbeat Critics' Poll listed her as a "Rising Star" on Soprano Saxophone the past four years in a row, and a Downbeat Magazine review called her "An exceptional young talent". Roxy graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2008 from William Paterson University with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies/Performance. In 2011, she was chosen to participate in both the prestigious Betty Carter's Jazz Ahead Residency Workshop at the Kennedy Center, and the acclaimed Steans Institute Jazz Program at the Ravinia Festival. Roxy is also the Founder and Director of Women In Jazz Organization, a collective of professional jazz musicians who identify as women, gender neutral or non-binary.

Guitar - Young guitarist Alex Wintz is quickly gaining a name in the international jazz community. His talent and embrace of contemporary influences molded with a deep gratitude to the traditions of the past has garnered him numerous accolades and acclaim from music lovers across the globe. Wintz is also a frequent collaborator with Etienne Charles, Ben Williams and Sound Effect, Peter and Will Anderson, and Nick Finzer. Throughout his career has performed at the leading jazz venues and festivals around the world including the Newport, Monterey, Montreux, and Montreal Jazz Festivals, among other major venues. In May 2017 Wintz released LifeCycle , his debut recording on Etienne Charles' Culture Shock imprint. The album, both challenging and accessible has garnered critical acclaim from Downbeat Magazine (3.5 Stars), All About Jazz , and The New York Jazz Record.

Piano/Keyboards - Miki Yamanaka is a New York-based pianist/organist/composer from Kobe, Japan. She moved to New York City in 2012 and has studied piano with Jason Lindner, Jeb Patton, and Fred Hersch, and Organ with Sam Yahel and Larry Goldings. In 2015 she was one of three pianists selected to participate in "Betty Carter's Jazz Ahead", an intensive composition residency at the Kennedy Center. She recently earned her Master of Music degree from Queens College, receiving the Sir Roland Hanna Award. Miki has appeared in concert with many notable musicians including Steve Nelson, Seamus Blake, Jerry Dodgion, Victor Lewis, Rich Perry, Antonio Hart and Peter Bernstein. She holds weekly residencies at Smalls and Mezzrow Jazz Clubs in NYC, hosted a week-long tribute to Horace Silver in 2016, and presented her own music in 2017 at Dizzy's Club Coca Cola. She is also the current pianist in the Philip Harper Quintet. Miki recorded an EP called Songs Without Lyrics in 2012, and has just recorded a new album with Steve Nelson, Orlando le Fleming, and Bill Stewart, called Miki , which will be released later in 2018.

Bass - Originally from Montreal, Rick Rosato moved to New York City in 2007 to study at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City. He quickly became one of the most in-demand jazz bassists and is maintaining an international performing, recording and teaching schedule. In 2010, he led a three-month-long artist series at the Upstairs Jazz Club in Montreal, where he formed several groups featuring some of today's most influential voices in jazz, including the co-led trio "Stranahan/Zaleski/Rosato". In the summer of 2014, Rick competed for the TD Jazz Awards at the Montreal International Jazz Festival with his own trio and won the Galaxie Jazz Award for best composition. He is regularly touring internationally and recording with groups such as Gilad Hekselman, Stranahan/Zaleski/Rosato, Ben Van Gelder, David Kikoski, and Will Vinson. Rick has also performed alongside Billy Hart, Peter Bernstein, Mark Turner, Dayna Stephens, Cris Potter, Aaron Parks, Bill Stewart, Marcus Gilmore, Jeff Ballard, Ari Hoenig, Mike Moreno, Lage Lund, Charles Altura, and many more. In addition to private teaching, Rick has led workshops throughout Europe and was a featured artist and teacher at the Thai International Jazz Conference in 2014.

Drums - Jimmy Macbride is a drummer/composer based in New York City. He has performed with a wide variety of artists including Herbie Hancock, Terence Blanchard, Wynton Marsalis, Kenny Barron, Jimmy Greene, and Adam Rogers. Coming from an artistic family (his father is a composer and mother is a visual artist), Jimmy began playing drums at age three and gravitated toward jazz music at an equally young age. Jimmy is a recent graduate of The Juilliard School, where he studied privately with Carl Allen, Billy Drummond and Kenny Washington. He is a regular performer throughout New York City, performing at such venues as Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, Smalls, The Jazz Gallery, and The Blue Note. His musical talents have also taken him worldwide, touring across Europe, Asia, and North America. Jimmy has also appeared at some of the world's most famous venues, including the Monterey Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival, and Newport Jazz Festival, among others. He performs regularly with different groups including Nir Felder, Samora Pinderhughes' Transformations Suite, Lucas Pino's Nonet, and Nick Finzer's group. In addition, he can be seen playing with many of New York's most creative and forward-thinking artists, including Lage Lund, Ben Street, Kevin Hays, Fabian Almazan, Matt Brewer, Michael Rodriguez, and Dayna Stephens. He is also an active recording artist, appearing on over 20 albums to date.


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