Zebec was formed in early 2014 with the goal of writing and performing original instrumental improvised music. The group is led by Columbus bred guitarist and composer Ishmael Ali Zghoul and consists mainly of jazz musicians living in the Chicago area. The project is dedicated to exploring sound through the collaborative improvisation, jazz, free jazz, as well compositional and aesthetic concepts of the avant garde. Their future ventures include a planned album release in March of 2015 and a tour that will follow.
Ishmael Ali Zghou
Ishmael Ali Zghoul is a guitarist and composer currently residing in Chicago, Illinois. He is originally from Columbus, Ohio where he studied music at Capital University, graduating with a B.A. in Music and a minor in Art History. There, he studied under some wonderful musicians including master guitarist Stan Smith. Ishmael has performed at many venues and stages in Ohio including the Columbus Community Festival (ComFest), the Newport Music Hall, Stella Blue in Archbold, and at the Lincoln Theatre in Columbus. He was also commissioned to write a new score for the silent film Nosferatu (1923) which he performed with a septet at Grandview Theater in October of 2012.
Ishmael relocated to Chicago in fall of 2013 to pursue his master’s degree in Jazz Studies with a focus on composition, which will be completed in June of 2015. His current projects include Zebec, a quintet that plays original music as well as music from Dr. Yusef Lateef’s One Hundred Twenty Three Duets , The Ali Humpherys Duo which performs weekly at Café Bella, and a Septet that Ishmael also writes for.
Alto saxophonist, composer and educator Natalie Lande began her musical career at an early age. Before discovering her love for jazz music, she studied classicalpiano. She began to study jazz improvisation and composition in high school. This past June, Natalie competed her Masters Degree in Jazz Composition at Depaul University in Chicago, IL. There, she studied with Tom Matta and Mark Colby, and participated actively in the jazz department. In 2013 Natalie was named 2nd place winner in the Civic and Arts jazz improvisation competition, college division. In 2014, Natalie was awarded a Luminarts fellowship grant, also won through jazz improvisation. She graduated from the University of Illinois with a BM in Jazz Performance and a BS in general chemistry. As a composer, she has written numerous pieces for a variety of ensembles- jazz big band, Latin jazz ensemble, a 7-piece rock band and saxophone quartet. Currently, she is putting together a band of her own, working on a project comprised of her own compositions. Natalie’s music has taken her to New Orleans, New York, Seoul, northern and southern China. She actively plays a wide variety of genres, composes and teaches around the Chicagoland area.
Matt is a musician dedicated to awakening a sense of the new while holding down a rich tradition of groove and spirit. His development started in Chicago at the age of four, when he took up cello, classical piano, and percussion on a "drum set" of plastic paint buckets. By age seven, Matt knew that drums were the instrument he would remain connected to for life. Eventually his efforts brought him to the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, FL, where he received a full scholarship; and last year, to the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland. His broad, joyfully open and inquisitive spirit continues to expand his vision beyond geographic and genre boundaries, enhancing his versatility and enabling him to convey his passion to audiences the world over.