Bad Philosopher is an electric jazz trio based out of Madison, WI whose performance consists of original compositions fusing elements of both classical, pop, funk and jazz music with extended improvisations. The unorthodox background and approach of each member makes this trio unique. Multi-award winning 6-string electric bassist Josh Cohen uses tapping techniques to fulfill the role of both bass player and guitarist in one instrument, creating polyphonic textures that seamlessly interweave their compositions. The three-time concerto award winning pianist/keyboardist Jason Kutz, known for his ability to traverse both classical and jazz styles, employs his virtuosic technique and highly developed musical sensibilities to add rich layers of chordal harmony and melodic content. Finally, drummer Chris Di Bernardo, armed with an in-depth knowledge of jazz and popular music and road tested experience with the critically acclaimed Madison reggae band Natty Nation, provides an infectious rhythmic underpinning, supporting the band while serving up a plethora of diverse percussive improvisations connecting the music to its African roots. Having formed less than one year ago, Bad Philosopher is already performing regularly and will begin recording their debut album in the summer of 2019.
Tony Barba is a saxophonist/educator/producer whose career has spanned the last twenty-five years. Originally hailing from Acton, Massachusetts and previously living in NYC and Chicago, Tony has resided in Madison, Wisconsin since 2013. He has performed, taught and toured professionally all over the world. A long standing member of the globe trotting Youngblood Brass Band, Tony has also performed and recorded with such notable and diverse artists as Makaya McCraven, Bon Iver, David Murray, Josh Ritter, the Mountain Goats, the Glenn Miller Orchestra, and the Temptations. In Madison he is currently a member of Acoplados, Golpe Tierra, Immigre, Michael Brenneis’s Plutonium, and the Paul Dietrich Jazz Orchestra. He co-leads the organ quartet Barbacoa and the improvised duo project Outside the Sphere with drummer Michael Brenneis. Additionally, Tony leads Blood Moon, a new quartet with an album of all original music which is slated to be released in the spring of 2020. He also has recently released two solo albums featuring saxophone and electronic manipulation entitled Winter’s Arms (2016) and Ether (2019). Tony has been the instructor of the Memorial High School Jazz Band since 2017 and has a growing private studio of saxophone students.