FRANK GAMBALE ALL STAR BAND
AVAILABILITY FOR ITALY 2023
Frank Gambale | Guitar
Dominique Di Piazza | Bass
George Whitty | Keyboards
Gergo Borlai | Drums
Grammy winning guitar virtuoso, Frank Gambale, exploded on the L.A. scene in the early ‘80s. His meteoric rise to fame is a testament to his passion-powered playing – a style Rolling Stone magazine called “ferocious!”
Gambale is an inspired songwriter with more than 300 songs published on 20+ albums. His music touches on many styles from rock, funk and jazz to R&B and some Latin and Brazillian influences.
As a legendary guitarist, Grammy Award Winner and three times Grammy Nominated, Gambale is an undisputed genius who originated the “Gambale Sweep Picking Technique” ( an economy picking technique and a new way to play the instrument) and elevated it to a precise art form now standard in the guitar lexicon. The “Gambale Sweep Picking Technique” continues to inspire generations of musicians. Jazz, rock, metal and progressive artists alike are united in their awe of Frank as both an amazing technician and an unsurpassed musician.
As a jazz legend, Chick Corea, described Frank this way: “Everything you touch with your guitar turns gold – always has.” Corea also said “Frank is my favorite guitar player.” Guitar great, John McLaughlin, joked: “I’d like to cut his hands off.”
Jazz guitarist Pat Metheny says of Frank: “I’d like to take a month off and study with Frank Gambale.” Dweezil Zappa said “studying Frank Gambale’s Sweep Picking technique enabled me to play the hardest parts of my father’s music that he himself didn’t play.”
A musician’s musician, a gifted composer, and a brilliant innovator and author of numerous instructional books and DVDs, Frank continues to reach unprecedented sonic and technical heights. His six string prowess and seemingly limitless vision point toward an exciting future of groundbreaking music.
Frank Gambale was born into a family of talented musicians in his native Canberra, Australia. He quickly absorbed the pantheon of ‘60s and ‘70s blues and rock guitar greats.
As a teen, Frank’s musical horizons expanded with the influence of jazz and vocal based
music under the generous tutelage of a local import record shop owner. At 17, he started playing piano and almost gave up guitar altogether. It was two years before Frank would return to the guitar at the insistence of his older brother. He returned to guitar with renewed enthusiasm but continues to play piano to this day.
Gambale says that his move to Los Angeles in the early ’80s put him in the middle of “where all the music I loved was being made.” His first stop was the Guitar Institute of Technology.
Frank’s shining prowess and dedication to practice garnered him “Student of the Year” upon graduation from GIT, landing him a teaching gig as well as a publishing deal for his first instructional book “Speed Picking” the first-ever book published on the subject of Sweep / Economy Picking. In 1985, he signed a three-album recording contract and began his recording career. In the summer of 1986, he toured with jazz violin great Jean-luc Ponty. Soon after that tour, his widening reputation led to an invitation by jazz legend Chick Corea to join his groundbreaking “Elektric Band”. He went on to play with the group for 36 years!
Frank began a major endorsement with the Ibanez guitar company and began to create four successive FGM series guitars, which became a very popular. He also signed a three DVD contract for instructional videos including Moster Licks & Speed Picking, the first-ever video on the subject of Sweep / Economy picking, Chopbuilder and Modes: No More Mystery, all of which were amongst the best selling instructional guitar videos ever produced. Fresh-faced Gambale graced the cover of Guitar Player magazine in June, 1988, with a headline entitled “Fire Meets Finesse.”
Some 30 magazine covers to date and reader’s poll wins and other accolades have followed. Fire meets finesse, indeed!
On the Road
Gambale’s musical journey has taken him “at least twenty times around the world,” by his account, with his own groups and as a collaborator with “Vital Information” and several of Chick Corea’s bands.
Gambale has produced more than 20+ solo records, another nine during his 16-year collaboration with Vital Information, plus three blazing albums with his off-shoot project, “Gambale, Hamm, Smith.” There were dozens of other guest record projects, as well. His fruitful 36 year alliance with Chick Corea has totaled six recordings and a live DVD recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival. That band garnered a Grammy and two Grammy nominations.
World tours with drumming legend Billy Cobham led to Cobham’s enthusiastic participation on Frank’s album, “Raison D’Etre,” which introduced Frank’s “Gambale Tuning System” to the world.
Sweep Picking, Gambale Tuning and Guitars
In 2004 nearly 40 years into his career, Frank discovered his revolutionary “Gambale Tuning.” This system aligns the close-voicing chordal capabilities of piano onto a reachable and familiar fretboard – yet another of his monumental contributions to the guitar alongside the Gambale Sweep Picking technique. Yamaha and now Kiesel quickly jumped in to arm Frank with a new double-neck guitar, necessitated by the quick change-over in tunings while flying on the new adventurous tracks.
The Frank Gambale DV Mark Signature line of amplifiers fires up the incredible new Gambale Signature FG-1 Guitar by Kiesel Guitars. This semi- hollow chambered guitar was a year in the making at Kiesel’s Custom Shop.
Frank’s instructional materials are used in many schools and universities throughout the world. His mystifying Gambale Sweep Picking Technique, featured in his first instructional book and masterfully demonstrated in the Monster Licks & Speed Picking video, continues to amaze and inspire guitarists. Frank generously conducts master classes around the world.
On the road in 2011
In 2011, the All-Star “Return to Forever IV” (Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, Jean- luc Ponty, Frank Gambale, Lenny White) ignited the greatest stages around the world. The iconic band played more than 100 concerts starting in Australia at the famed Sydney Opera House.
The World Tour culminated in the 2 CD/DVD album The Mothership Returns.
New Release in 2012
2012 brought more terrific new directions for Frank Gambale: an album he wanted to make for 30 years. Soulmine is a return to Gambale’s vocal roots, and the first collaboration with inspirational songstress and muse, BOCA.
Gambale and BOCA wrote, arranged and produced this release. It features Boca’s sexy, strong and evocative vocals and inviting lyrics – luring listeners to “stir their soul.” Also present is Gambale’s soulful guitar playing and signature sweep-picking prowess throughout the album. “Soulmine” has catchy tunes punctuated with shining vocal harmonies, unexpected sass, funky rhythms and saucy guitar lines.
The delicious guitar tones that tie the tracks together are complemented by the combination of the new Frank Gambale DV Mark Signature line of amps firing up the incredible Gambale Signature FG1 Guitar by Carvin’s Custom Shop.
Frank Gambale Soulmine feat. BOCA is available here.
Soulmine Tour of Europe 2012
The first single, “Forbidden Kiss,” hit the radio waves and video channels in January, 2012. Released on Frank Gambale TV (FGTV), the video was created and directed by the legendary Nigel Dick. This award-winning, British-born filmmaker boasts a resume of more than 300 music videos, multiple commercials and numerous films. His creativity and vision enhances the key elements of musical expression and sensuality that comes through Gambale and BOCA’s collaboration.
Watch the video here Forbidden Kiss.
Gambale continued to tour with his various groups. His group, Soulmine, graced jazz festival stages from USA, Mexico, Sweden and the Canary Islands
Frank launched is first online guitar school in October 2015 the
Frank Gambale Guitar School
Gambale had always wanted his own forum to deliver his unique brand of teaching music and guitar and has been an oasis for musicians seeking serious online educational and inspirational video courses.
Amongst the epic courses are “Spicing Up The Blues”, “The Definitive Gambale Sweep Picking Course” and “Target Tones.
2017 saw a world-tour of the iconic Chick Corea Elektric Band, featuring Chick Corea, Frank Gambale, Eric Marienthal, John Patitucci, and Dave Weckl. The band delighted longtime fans all over the world.
It was another busy year for Frank Gambale, including the release of Soulmine’s second album (SALVE), another brilliant collaboration with singer/songwriter BOCA. Salve finds Frank sharing some of the lead singing along with Boca. The album also features two more fantastic song videos directed by Nigel Dick. See the videos here
Fear of Flyin’ and Through The Darkness
Frank toured the US East Coast in September 2019 with Dennis Chambers on drums, Mike Pope ( a former Elektric Band member ) and Sean Wayland on keys. It was a sellout tour.
Frank reformatted his popular online school and relaunches it on a brand new platform. He has released a huge amount of new courses including his Peace & Harmony: The Theory Of Creativity, Pentatonic Heaven, Rhythmic Displacement, Rhythm Guitar Crash Course and his latest (June 2022) Playing Outside amongst other great lessons, play-along tracks and album transcriptions and downloads.
2020 to early 2022 and Beyond
Frank just completed a sellout 6-week Sweeping Across Europe and Scandinavia Tour March – April 2022 with his All-Star Band after a long 2 year Covid lockdown.”I was so happy to be back on stage doing what I love”. The audiences were happy too, many of them were at their first show post-Covid.
Frank Gambale just completed a new single soon to be released called “Happiness Is…?” Performing with him on the new song is fellow Aussie giant Tommy Emmanuel and bass great Victor Wooten and Canadian percussionist Rick Lazar. The song video was directed by the legendary videographer Nigel Dick.
Frank is currently working on his eagerly anticipated next album release.
Whether Gambale is touring the world with his All-Star band, the Natural High Trio, his cool new vocal group Frank Gambale Soulmine, or joining forces in an iconic jazz super group, Frank continues to amaze audiences around the world.
Grammy-award winning keyboardist George Whitty has spent 30 years playing on the road with the Brecker Brothers, Herbie Hancock, David Sanborn, Richard Bona, Chaka Khan, Sadao Watanabe, and a dozen others, and his resume as a session musician and producer includes some of the best-selling records of all time: Santana’s “Supernatural” (with Dave Matthews), Celine Dion’s “Falling Into You” and “These are Special Times”, and more than 300 other CDs. As a producer/keyboardist, his Grammy-winning streak began with Chaka Khan’s “The Woman I Am” in 1992 and extends through 3 award-winning releases with the Brecker Brothers, most recently Randy Brecker’s “34th and Lex”, 2004’s Grammy-winner for Contemporary Jazz Record of the Year. In April 2010, he completed work on several tracks for Herbie Hancock’s CD “The Imagine Project”, programming Herbie’s live rig for the tour as well. As a composer, he’s written for hundreds of episodes of television and several award-winning films, composing for a dozen shows from “The Road to Stardom with Missy Elliot” to “As the World Turns”, for which he was nominated for a 2006 Emmy award. In 2014 he won an Emmy award for scoring the long-running series “All My Children”. George recently finished the score to the feature film comedy “The Getdown”, which is in the rotation on Showtime, and has recently been working with Herbie Hancock, both as keyboardist in Herbie’s band at the Hollywood Bowl for 2012s “Concert for Peace”, and as an arranger/keyboardist, recently completing several orchestral arrangements for a duo CD for Herbie and classical pianist Lang Lang. George arranged 3 classic Herbie pieces for the LA Philharmonic’s 100th Anniversary Concert at the Hollywood Bowl, featuring Herbie and his band, and for a performance by Herbie at Disney hall in Los Angeles. In March of 2020 he arranged several pieces for full orchestra for Residente’s sold-out performance with the LA Phil, the night after 2 more pieces he arranged for Herbie Hancock premiered at Disney Hall. In May, 2018, George and his trio Third Rail played a nearly sold-out 3 nights at the Cotton Club in Tokyo. In 2020 George finished production and writing on a duo CD for Eric Marienthal and Randy Brecker, “Double Dealin’”, in addition to a number of other CD projects. In addition to all of his studio playing, producing and arranging projects, George maintains a busy schedule as a touring artist, currently playing around the world with Frank Gambale’s band, David Sanborn, Randy Brecker, Armand Sabal-Lecco (Paul Simon bassist), and Chris Minh Doky, in addition to ongoing Third Rail projects. He is currently mixing and mastering a steady stream of CDs, conducting clinics and master classes and teaching around the world. In the summer of 2015 he became the Jazz Piano instructor at Artistworks.com, the leading online lessons website. In between all his musical activities, he enjoys life in the mountains outside Los Angeles with his 2 boys and 2 cats.
DOMINIQUE DI PIAZZA
Dominique Di Piazza was born in Lyon, France, with Sicilian ancestry and a gypsy stepfather. He started playing electric bass in 1979. After some time, he managed to free himself from the pervasive influence that Jaco Pastorius had over most bassists at the time, by creating his own style. Self-taught, he added an extra high string to his 4-string bass and created his own technique of using the right-hand thumb, index and middle fingers. This unique approach enabled a virtuosity and style that is quite unusual in the world of bass. A defining example is the track « Marie » a flagship piece for solo bass from the 90s, found on the album « Que alegria » by John McLaughlin.
This right hand style gave birth to the « four-finger picking » technique later popularized in Europe and the US by several new-generation bassists including Matthew Garrison, Adam Nitti and Hadrien Feraud. Dominique’s great knowledge of bebop, his gypsy and neo-classical influences, his lyrical style and his advanced harmonic concept have combined to make him one of the most innovative bassists in the world today.
Dominique started his career in 1982 at the Hot Club in Lyon with guitarist Michel Pérez. In 1986 he moved to Paris and began touring with violinist Didier Lockwood, drummer André Ceccarelli and pianist Gordon Beck. The following year he toured Europe with Gil Evans and the Big Bang Lumière de Laurent Cugny, a group that was immortalized on the Santander album, winner of the Prix de l’Académie Charles-Cros and in 1989 he recorded a trio album called Padre, with Jean-Pierre Como and Stéphane Huchard.
In 1991, Dominique joined the John McLaughlin Trio along with percussionist Trilok Gurtu. After a world tour of over 300 concerts, the album Que alegria was released in 1992. McLaughlin was then quoted as saying of DiPiazza: “His talent is immense—he’s one of the best bassists in the world.”
The same year, Dominique recorded with pianist Michel Petrucianni on the album The First, with Michel’s brother Philippe Petrucianni on guitar and Victor Jones on drums. In 2000, the Front Page Trio was created with Bireli Lagrene on guitar and Dennis Chambers on drums. They toured Europe and released a self-titled album (Frontpage) that scored them a Victoire de la Musique award for Best Jazz Album of 2001.
From 1990 to 2005, Dominique worked with a wide array of artists including Michael Blass, Bruno Castellucci, Giuseppe Continenza, Vic Juris, Gene Bertoncini, Yves Carbonne, Michael Manring, Jeff Gardner, Victor Wooten, Derico Watson, Danny Gottlieb and Donald Harrison. In 2005/06 he hit the road again, this time in Reunion, Mauritius, Madagascar, and ten other African countries, with a pianist from Reunion named Meddy Gerville, guitarist Jean-Marie Ecay, and drummer Horacio “el Negro” Hernandez. This collaboration led to the Jazz Amwin CD, which introduced the “Maloya Jazz” style (combining jazz with traditional music from Reunion) to a wider global audience.
In 2006, Dominique went to India to record a CD (Samjanitha, 2008) with the great Indian mandolin player U. Shrinivas, as well as Debashish Bhattacharya, Selvaganesh and Zakir Hussain. Following that he played on Antonio Farao’s album, Woman’s Perfume, alongside André “Dédé” Ceccarelli on drums.
In 2008, John McLaughlin called upon Dominique’s talents once again for a European tour with The 4th Dimension, also including Gary Husband on keys and percussion, and Mark Mondésir on drums. Together the band played more than 30 concerts all across Europe and released a DVD Live @ Belgrade. Another show featured Dominique with McLaughlin in India, in a group called The Floating Point, which included Ranjit Barot, Louis Banks, Shashank, Naveen Kumar and Shankar Mahadevan.
Around the same time, Dominique assembled the Di Piazza Trio with Brazilian guitarist Nelson Veras and drummer Manhu Roche. The trio’s album, Princess Sita, was released in the USA in August of 2008.
From 2009 to 2011, Dominique criss-crossed the world with a wide variety of artists.
In France, with Elene Dee and David Berkman for Lyrics on Pat Metheny’s music; in Russia with the Blues & Beyond Quartet (Sébastien Charlier, Yannick Robert and Yoann Schmidt) and the album La Danse du chat; with 4 Essential (with Thierry Maillard, Debora Seffer and Yoann Schmidt) for an album and festival shows; with Antonio Farao and André “Dédé” Ceccarelli; in the electro-jazz group Synopsis with Eric Sempe and Felix Sabal Lecco, and a CD called Rebirth; in a trio with Francis Lockwood and Fred Sicard on Tribute to Hendrix; with the Petrucciani Reunion quartet with Philippe Petrucciani, Nathalie Blanc and Manhu Roche on the CD Este Mundo.
In Spain, with Ximo Tebar, Donald Edwards and Jim Ridl; also the flamenco-jazz guitarist Chema Vilchez, with Jeff Balard and Alex Acuna; with singer Maria de Medeiros and gypsy-flamenco musician Raimundo Amador; in Turkey, with bağlama player Zeki Çağlar Namlı and on the Face to Face CD, and Buzuki Orhan Osman alongside his old friend Trilok Gurtu; in Ireland, with Mike Nielsen and Paul Wertico; in Italy with Alberto Iovene and Manhu Roche on the CD Wired Along; in Norway, in a duo with guitarist Hallgeir Pedersen; in Russia with Andrei Bodnartchouk and the group Made in France; and in India with Ranjit Barot’s group which included Scott Kinsey and Tim Garland, releasing an album called Bada Boom.
Dominique has also been working with a popular young gypsy guitarist named Brady Winterstein (and his uncle Hono), and they released an album in 2011 called Happy together.
Dominique has designed a special bridge (as well as a bass) with luthier Mike Sabre, which makes it possible to obtain a “fretless” sound on a fretted bass. This was first featured on the track « Seven up » from the 1993 CD Wait and See by Michael Blass.
For several years, Dominique has been teaching at the Music Academy International (M.A.I.) at Nancy, France, and also gives master classes around the world. Transcriptions of his playing appear in the book Bass Soloing Concepts by Chuck Sher and Marco Johnson. His composition “Living Hope” is included in The European Real Book.
Dominique’s sincerity, his unique style and his openness to music from around the world make him one of the most highly regarded musicians on the international scene.
Dominique plays on Marbass amps. « For a long time, I’ve been looking for a bass amp that won’t color my sound » says Dominique. « And most of the good amps are bulky and hard to transport. But bravo, Marco—with my Little Mark Tube head and Traveler 102P cabinet, I have both uncolored sound and portability at the same time! »
Gergo is a professional drummer originally from Hungary but now living in Barcelona, Spain.
In his home country of Hungary, Gergo Borlai has appeared on more than a 300 albums, received two lifetime achievement awards and two “gold record awards,” as well as the Golden Drumstick Prize and the Artisjus Lifetime Achievement Award. Gergo has become one of the most exciting up-and-coming drumset artists and has grown in popularity and also with his breathtaking solos. Gergo also became a clinician man all over in Europe, U.S. and Asia like Musician Institute Hollywood, South Korea, France, Sweden, Poland, South America, Spain, Germany, etc… Gergo is a professor of the Liceu Academy/Jazz Departement – Barcelona since 2012. Gergo has lesson packages for Drum Guru.
Touring: Hungary, Romania, France, Slovakia, Chez Republic, Portugese, Belgium, Finland, England, Germany, Austria, Poland, Ukraine, Spain, Italy, Serbia, Croatia, Netherland, Canada, Japan, Israel, South Corea, South America, Greece, Sweden, Norway, USA
Gergo performed with Frank Gambale (AU), Gary Willis (USA), Scott Kinsey(USA), Scott Henderson(USA), Matthew Garrison(USA), Steve Tavaglione(USA), Llibert Fortune(SP), Walt Fowler(USA), Bob Mintzer(USA), Hiram Bullock(USA), L. Shankar(India), Vernon Reid(USA), Iain Ballamy(GB), Terry Bozzio(US), Al DiMeola(USA), Nguyen Lee(F), Hadrien Feraud(F), Eivind Aarset(N), Eric Moore(USA), Tim Lefebvre(USA), Yolanda Charles(GB).