Craig Yaremko

Saxophonist Craig Yaremko has established himself as one of the most exciting and versatile young artists on the New York jazz scene. A dynamic performer on all saxophones, flutes and clarinets, Craig’s diverse musical tastes have led to performances with world-class jazz, classical, rock and pop artists. Through this he has developed a distinctive approach as both a composer and performer. His latest recording, Sync (Jazz Excursion), catches a forward-thinking artist in prime form.
A native of Clifton, NJ, Craig received his B.F.A. in Jazz and Contemporary Music Performance from the New School University in New York City in 2001. While at the New School, Craig studied with renowned saxophonist, and doubler Ken Hitchcock (who passed on the teachings of the great Joe Allard), as well as jazz greats Jane Ira Bloom, Richard Boukas, Joanne Brackeen, Joe Chambers, Eddie Gomez, Barry Harris, Junior Mance, Cecil McBee, Ron McClure, Charles Tolliver, and Reggie Workman.
Since then Craig has been in constant demand. He has performed along side jazz artists Gerri Allen, Helio Alves, Tim Armacost, Jerry Bergonzi, Paul Bollenback, Don Braden, Paulo Braga, Randy Brecker, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Candido, Kermit Driscoll, Paquito D’Rivera, John Riley, Joe Magnarelli, Hendrik Meurkens, Paul Meyers, Bob Mintzer, Rufus Reid, Dave Samuels, Bobby Sanabria, Byron Stripling, Dave Valentin, and Ray Vega. He has worked with some of the New York area’s finest big bands, including an almost nine-year run as the lead alto saxophonist with the Cecil?s Big Band (directed by Mike Lee) at Cecil?s Jazz Club. Other big band performances include Diane Moser’s Composer’s Big Band, the BMI Composer’s Workshop (with Jim McNeely and Michael Abene), as well as the bands of Bill Mobley, Mike Treni, Russ Speigel, Bill Warfield, and Joe Elefante (receiving national exposure in the Wall Street Journal and on ABC’s Nightline). As a soloist, Craig has worked with some of the finest players of his generation, including Freddie Hendrix, Julius Tolentino, Sam Barsh, Josh Dion, and Marshall Gilkes, and has recorded three albums with the Nathan Eklund Group (The Crooked Line (2007) and The View From Afar (2006) and Coin Flip (2010)).
A truly eclectic musician, Craig has also performed with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, New York City Symphony, and numerous Broadway and Off-Broadway pit orchestras. He has backed-up such artists as Clay Aiken, Frankie Avalon, Lou Christie, the DuPrees, Linda Eder, Fabian, Michael Feinstein, Connie Francis, Aretha Franklin, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Patti LuPone, Johnny Mathis, Bobby Rydell, Paul Sorvino, The Teenagers, Toni Tennille, The Tokens, Leslie Uggums and Frankie Valli.
Yaremko has led is own groups since 2001. With performances at clubs like the Zinc Bar, Smalls, Louis 649, Trumpets, and the Cornelia Street Cafe, Craig has built a strong following throughout the New York area. The June 2007 release of Sync marked his third recording as a leader (Persistence (2004) and Brasil (2001)). A highly interactive, ?chordless? quartet outing, the album highlights the chemistry between Yaremko (heard on saxophones, flute and bass clarinet), and trumpeter Nathan Eklund, and is held together by the rhythm section of Bill Moring on bass, and Steve Johns on drums. Receiving high praise from the jazz press, the CD finds the group exploring compositions by Monk, Jobim, Lennon and McCartney, and Irving Berlin, as well as ?originals, which touch on the jazz tradition while also looking forward.? They ?are rife with musical adventures.? (Newark Star-Ledger). ?Craig Yaremko is a jack of many instruments, and here he is the master of all.? (Jazz Improv New York). While Craig continues to work within this chordless-quartet setting, his latest project, CYO3, finds him delving into orginals and standards while pushing the boundaries of the classic jazz organ trio. Expect a new recording from this group in late 2012.