The Brubeck Institute Fellowship Program, University of the Pacific, '07-'09
The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, B.A. Jazz Piano Performance December 2011
Schubert Club Jazz Piano Scholarship 2006 and 2007
Brubeck Institute Fellow 2007 and 2008
14th Annual Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Participant 2011
DownBeat Magazine Award for Best College Group (BIJQ) 2009 and 2010
Freelance musician/composer in Twin Cities Metro area
Freelance musician/composer in New York City 2009 to 2015
Music is the greatest form of human expression and we are all innately capable of utilizing this powerful medium! My goal is to tailor the lesson to the individual by working with them to develop their own unique, personalized strategies to achieve their musical goals. We'll start by determining what the student wishes to accomplish musically, and with that information, create a structured lesson plan. I will slowly introduce traditional methods of technique and theory as we learn repertoire from all genres (classical, jazz, folk, even contemporary pop... depending on what the student desires to learn!). There will also be a strong emphasis on ear training and rhythm and even some improvisation and singing (optional). All within a fun, positive, healing and nurturing environment!
Javi Santiago is a powerful young artist with a strong vision. Born and raised in Minneapolis, MN, he grew up surrounded by strong artistic support. He was given a strong musical background by his jazz musician parents, as well as stalwarts of the local jazz community. Javi started playing piano at the age of 5, and was classically trained until he discovered his love of jazz music at the age of 11. In high school, he was a prominent player in the Minneapolis/St. Paul music scene. It was around this time that he started composing and working on his music production skills. While still in high school, he organized his own quintet and produced two albums. He also won the Schubert Club Jazz Piano Competition two years in a row.
In 2007, Javi was selected by the great Dave Brubeck and a panel of judges to be a part of the Brubeck Institute Fellowship program at the University of the Pacific in California. It was there that Javi was able to learn from some of the greatest musicians in the world; Christian McBride, Robert Glasper, Eric Harland, Joe Gilman, Nicholas Payton, Joshua Redman, Geoffrey Keezer and Jeff Ballard to name a few. While at the Brubeck Institute, Javi was fortunate enough to play at venues all across the nation such as the Detroit Jazz Festival, The Kennedy Center and Blues Alley in Washington, D.C., IAJE, and Yoshi’s in Oakland. The Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet (’08-’09) was awarded Best College Group Of the Year in DownBeat Magazine two years in a row (2009 and 2010).
In 2011, Javi was selected to participate in the 14th Annual Betty Carter Jazz Ahead program. The intensive residency program took place at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. It was there that Javi studied with Curtis Fuller, George Cables, Winard Harper, Dr. Nathan Davis, and other jazz heavyweights.
Javi received his Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Piano Performance in late 2011 at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in NYC. Since then, he has been playing gigs regularly in NYC at venues such as Smalls Jazz Club, 55 Bar, The Iridium, and several others. Javi is not limited to just playing the piano. He is also a prolific composer. His work is an eclectic blend of Jazz, R&B, Rock, Hip Hop and everything in between. Javi is also a teacher, arranger, and producer.