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The Bandwriting Fundamentals faculty has been carefully selected to offer students a fully rounded experience in the creation and production of music. Each member of the faculty and staff, while expert at his own instrument, is there to foster students’ creativity in accord with their own interests and to introduce them to the practical aspects of music production.

Joy Askew

Tender City

Vocalist Joy Askew recorded much of her debut for Private Music/BMG, Tender City, in her home studio. She had no idea at the time that her tracks would be the foundation for her first solo album. But Askew, a veteran vocalist and sidewoman singer to performers as varied as Joe JacksonPeter GabrielLaurie Anderson and Rodney Crowell, agreed with the record executives’ assessment that it was time for her to step into the limelight. Aside from her work as a touring vocalist with these artists, she’s also recorded with Phoebe Snow and Jules Shear, among others.

Big WorldAskew was born and raised in northern England. After many years there, she moved to New York City in 1982. She played keyboards and sang with a group, Eye To Eye, signed to Warner Bros. Shortly after her arrival, she answered a call from Joe Jackson, who was looking for a keyboard player and singer for his “Night and Day” world tour. Askew later joined Laurie Anderson’s 1984 “Mr. Heartbreak” tour. Askew’s keyboard treatments can be heard on Jackson’s albums Big WorldBlaze of Glory and Laughter and Lust.

Perhaps the reason Askew’s debut for Private Music/BMG sounds so fresh and innovative is because Askew doesn’t write songs in the conventional way. She hears a musical mood first, and then puts lyrics to what she’s hearing. She doesn’t latch on to phrases or chorus until she’s fleshed out the melody in her head first.

After touring with Peter Gabriel for a world tour, she left the tour in the summer of 1993 and formed her own band, signing up guitarist Shane Fontayne, percussionist Joe Bonadio and guitarist Chris CunninghamCunningham’s playing adds the Mediterranean melodies to several tracks on Tender City. Also performing on her debut album are bassist Larry Klein and drummer Jerry Marotta.

On Tender CityAskew is joined by her former boss Gabriel, who contributes harmony vocals on “I’m Just Looking For A Home.” Gabriel recorded the backing vocals from his chalet in France while Askew, based in New York City, continued fine-tuning the other tracks on the album. Tender City was produced by Askew, who also plays keyboards, in her home studio. The raw tapes were later transferred to 24-track in a proper mastering studio.

Mathew Baram

Matthew Baram is a busy performer and music educator based in Brooklyn, NY. He’s had the opportunity to share his talent with a wide variety of audiences, from playing gospel music in Baptist churches to hard hitting rock at the Palladium in LA. Check out a few of his most recent projects – the psychedelic rock band OF EARTH, the latin pop band Venus Eon and the industrial heavy metal band Black Film. He also writes and records his own music, which can be heard at

Matthew began his musical life as a classical pianist, studying with Brent Runnells as a teenager, then Phiroz Mehta and Read Gainsford while at Ithaca College. He was a two-time Concerto Competition finalist there, and gave numerous solo and chamber music recitals. After graduation, he began to improvise music from the thin air, and write original songs with a wide array of bands.

Matthew has been a private keyboard and voice instructor for many years. His method combines traditional techniques with a modern sensibility, and he’s at home teaching everything from Bach to Kings Of Leon. He’s very excited to be part of the Bandwriting Collective, which gives students a unique opportunity to explore musical ideas in a band setting, and looks forward to the amazing music created during this year’s Summer Program.

 Stuart Klinger


Stuart Klinger has been part of the New York music scene since the early 1980’s. His musical experience is broad, having performed and recorded many various styles of music, including classical guitar, jazz, rock and alternative rock. He is an ASCAP writer with song placements in major movies and television shows. During the 1980’s, Stuart played with the infamous Punk legend, Dean Johnson, in Dean and the Weenies. In 1990, he joined the band known as The Rake’s Progress, which recorded for Almo/Geffen Records. The Rake’s Progress was featured on Late Night with Conan O’Brian, MTV’s 120 Minutes, and Beavis and Butthead and toured through the United States, Canada and Europe. The band appeared on the cover of Billboard magazine.

At the present time, Stuart writes music, plays with The Fred Norris Band, writes, records and performs with Barnacle Bill,  Streams of Whiskey and The Music of Traffic. From many years of teaching experience, Stuart has refined a focused approach to teaching music that features “artistic vision” and creativity as the spark that inspires young people. It becomes the reason practicing is no longer becomes “homework”. Instead,  mastery of a student’s chosen instrument refines their own personal self-image and is effective as a means of self-expression.  The purpose of these workshops is to have participating students form bands; then write, arrange, perform and, very importantly, record their own music.

Jesse Krakow

Jesse Krakow is a multiinstrumentalist, producer, songwriter, and musical director currently based in BK. He has worked with The Shaggs, Shudder To Think, John Zorn, Ruins, Carla Kihlstedt (Sleepytime Gorilla Museum), Kate Pierson (The B-52’s), Julee Cruise (“Twin Peaks”), Gary Lucas (Captain Beefheart/Jeff Buckley), Nona Hendryx (LaBelle), Nina Persson (The Cardigans), Chris Butler (The Waitresses), Cynthia Sley (Bush Tetras), Doug Gillard (Guided By Voices), Marilyn Crispell, American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME), Elliott Sharp, Weasel Walter, Bob Holman, The Loser’s Lounge, PAK, Kayo Dot, and Phillip Johnston, among others.

He was a founding member of the art-pop/party-prog quartet Time of Orchids. Currently he is the musical director of the all ages musical collective The Exploding Note Ensemble, the front-man for the lo-fi recording project We Are The Musk Brigade, and a member of Doctor Nerve, Haessliche Luftmasken, & The Tall Pines. He has performed in the US, Canada, Mexico, France, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Japan, Taiwan, The Netherlands, Austria, Slovenia, Spain, Luxembourg, & Switzerland and has releases on the Tzadik, Cuneiform, Sony, Relapse, Crucial Blast, Magna Carta, Badnews, Public Eyesore, Eh!, RA Sounds, Lazer Seizure record labels.

Bill Gerstel

BandwritingCollective-087-20130719-CovingtonPortraitsIn addition to teaching the drums and performing, percussionist Bill Gerstel, has extensive experience working with singers and songwriters and studio recording. Educated in the field of family therapy, he realized that the music he loves had as much of a healing and energizing effect as any therapeutic method he studied. He dropped his books, picked up his drumsticks and never looked back. Bill has played in rock bands which toured the United States and Europe. He also played the drums and other percussion instruments in Joseph Papp’s Riverside Shakespeare Company’s production of The Merry Wives of Windsor.

Steve Addabbo

BandwritingCollective-Studio-070-20130718-CovingtonPortraitsIn October 1988 the studio opened on Shelter Island, two hours east of NYC. Producer/ engineer Steve Addabbo purchased all of the equipment from a well respected east side studio that was closing and set up the studio in the basement of his home. The timing was perfect, Steve had just had a huge success with Suzanne Vega’s “Solitude Standing” album and Shawn Colvin had just been signed to Columbia records. Steve and the studio began working on Colvin’s debut album, “Steady On”(a Grammy Winner), Eric Andersen’s classic, “Ghosts Upon the Road” and other major label and indy projects.

In October 1990, the studio was moved to 30 West 21st Street in New York City.After 15 years at our 21st street studio we relocated in September 2005 to 40 West 27th Street, 7th Floor.  Same great equipment, a larger tracking room, and a great control room.Now in its 25th year of operation, the studio continues to be a vital part of the New York recording and mixing scene.

Rob Taube

RobTaube-02-620x330Rob Taube, is A busy musician, songwriter, producer and independent music teacher in New York City,
Avid Records artist Rob Taube brings a big-city edge to his country/rock-influenced music.

A former member of the Detroit rock band Scratch, Rob has worked all his life as a professional keyboardist, guitarist and singer, and his credits include gigs with major musical acts like Hank Williams Jr., Leon Russell and
James Taylor.

As a producer, Rob combines a rich background in analog recording with an up-to-the minute mastery of Pro Tools to create a unique sound produced in his East Village studio. In addition to his own singing and songwriting, he is currently helping develop a small roster of talented up-and-coming NYC artists.

Kymberly Brown

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Kymberly Brown
is our program coordinator. Her unique combination of skills makes her a great asset to the program in many areas. As well as being a published poet and songwriter, she is a public school language arts teacher. During her seventeen years of teaching she has worked mainly with 12 to 18 year-olds and relates well to teenagers.

She has been published in A Gathering of the Tribes and Long Shot magazines, and Aloud: Voices from the Nuyorican Poet’s Cafe, a 1994 American Book Award winner. She also has two poems in theNational Library of Poetry.