Grammy award winning guitarist, Lee Ritenour, has been a part of the Crown family from the beginning, and is returning for his eighth experience. As an L.A. native, Lee grew up in a diverse area, giving him opportunities to work with The Mama and Papas, Dave Grusin, Lena Horne, Tony Bennett, and Phil Collins. From rock to blues to jazz, Lee has not stayed put in his career, documenting his journey throughout forty albums.
Over the span of forty years, Lee has received 17 Grammy Nominations, earned his spot at #1 in guitar polls, and of his forty album, featured 35 chart songs. Also a founding member of the Contemporary jazz band, Fourplay, Lee and the group became the most successful contemporary jazz band. Within a year, their first album rested at No. 1 on Billboard’s contemporary jazz chart for 33 weeks.
John Oates is familiarly associated with Hall & Oates, an American musical duo from Philadelphia. The duo was inducted into the American Songwriters Hall of Fame and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, while earning grammy nominations, MTV awards, and American Music Awards. They earned their title of the most successful rock duo after recording 21 albums and selling 80 million copies.
Venturing off into a solo career in 1999, he has recorded and released five solo albums since then. Residing in Nashville, he contributes his songwriting and musical talents in the community an beyond. John has also expanded his artistic talents by writing a memoir, Change of Seasons, and contributing to 7908: The Aspen Songwriters Festival in his home state - Colorado. This will be John's second appearance at the Crown since 2014.
Justin Townes Earle
Justin has evolved and matured in more ways than one, both in his personal life and professional career, even in thirty two years. Releasing four full-length-critically-acclaimed albums and constantly touring, he has found clarity through the trials and tribulations he has faced since a child. His fifth record, narrates this newfound clarity and self reflection of the path Justin was leading.
Justin can be considered the forefather of Contemporary Americana. As music becomes popular, sometimes the authenticity can slip through the cracks. Justin, whose heart and soul is rooted in Nashville, writes with passion and authenticity, while still being able to catch your attention. Albums such as Single Mothers or Kids in the Street will depict his credibility. Justin uses songwriting as a platform to express and release added weight, producing a beautifully solid country record.
While best known for her stop-you-in-your-tracks voice, Berklee of College Music graduate and award winning songwriter, Liz Longley, has steadily developed a reputation as an accomplished songwriter, crafting intimately personal portraits through her music. She's taken home top prizes at some of the most prestigious songwriting competitions in the country, including the BMI John Lennon Songwriting Scholarship Competition, the International Acoustic Music Awards and the Rocky Mountain Folk Fest Songwriting Competition.
While on the road between Boston and New York, Liz toured solo and lived life on the road in mini vans. Along the way, Liz found her home in Nashville. Her power to connect with an audience displays her style of songwriting, avoiding transparency and confessional structure. As her music resonates with her throughout personal experiences, her hopes is for the audience to make a connection and use her lyrics as guidance.
Pat Martino Trio
Dropping out of High School in tenth grade to pursue a career in music proved to be the right path for Pat. Before turning 18 years old, Pat was considered an icon in the Jazz community, and signed to Prestige Records at the age of 20. He has performed with Gene Ammons, Woody, Herman, Barry Miles, John Handy, and Trudy Pitts. Delivering music therapy seminars or teaching master classes and clinics worldwide, Berklee College of Music, Patti Summers Jazz Club, The New School, or Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts, this is only the beginning. Pat has also received Grammy nominations and honored as an individual and for his work.
Along the way, Martino experienced some health problems affecting his nervous system. Eventually he was informed his health condition was terminal and underwent surgery, after suffering a severe brain aneurysm. Pat's memory failed him after the surgery, but in following months, he miraculously began a recovery unlike any other. Pat has been recognized as one of the most virtuosic guitarists in jazz, embodying thoughtful energy and soul.
Matteo Mela and Lorenzo Micheli comprise one of the best ensembles ever heard, Solo Duo. Performing globally, Solo Duo has performed and received a warm welcoming from New York’s Carnegie Hall to Seoul’s Sejong Chamber Hall. Aside from classic, romantic and modern repertoire, Matteo and Lorenzo have extensively studied Italian music from the 17th and 18th centuries. They have applied their studies and experience to their teaching careers.
Matteo attended the University to further his education in musicology. He studied under Angelo Gilardino and David Russell among others. At the Accademia Pianistica di Imola he studied chamber music, which would help him in chamber music competitions later on.
Lorenzo gained momentum after winning top prize for prestigious guitar competitions, performing over 600 times worldwide. He has published chamber and solo works with guitar.
Playing from a young age, Nathan experienced his first breakthrough at only 16 years old, traveling alongside American Singer Songwriter and Composer, Barry White. Quincy Jones became aware of Nathan's talents, creating a path of collaborations with Eric Clapton, Michael Jackson, Phil Collins, Stevie Wonder, Barbara Streisand, and Beyonce. Alongside Lee Ritenour, Nathan is also a founding member of the contemporary jazz group, Fourplay.
Working alongside those in the industry, Nathan takes much pride in the music he has produced with others. before recording his first solo album under Yamaha Entertainment Group, as lead artist, featuring his son and brother. In this album you can sense his spirit and spontaneity throughout each song. Nathan has played bass on numerous Grammy nominated records and songs such as "Get Lucky," by Daft Punk, “Footloose,” Kenny Loggins and “Saving All My Love for You” and “The Greatest Love of All,” Whitney Houston.