Performance Saturday, March 8, 2014 | 9:30 PM

Zawinul Legacy Band

Zankel Hall
Viennese jazz artist Josef Erich “Joe” Zawinul combined traditional jazz with elements of rock and world music. Comprising alums from several of his musical projects, the Zawinul Legacy Band unites to honor this pioneering jazz keyboardist and composer.

This concert is part of Late Nights at Zankel Hall.


  • Zawinul Legacy Band
    ·· Scott Kinsey, Keyboards
    ·· Hadrien Feraud, Bass
    ·· Robert Thomas Jr., Percussion and Hand Drums
    ·· Michael Baker, Drums
    ·· Katisse Buckingham, Saxophones and Flutes

Event Duration

The program will last approximately 90 minutes with no intermission.


  • Zawinul Legacy Band

    The Zawinul Legacy Band is the only official music representative that promotes and keeps the vision of Joe Zawinul's musical legacy alive. But make no mistake; this is no ordinary "tribute" band. These musicians not only appreciate and value the creative and original music of Joe Zawinul-including Weather Report and the Zawinul Syndicate-but they lived it right alongside him. The core of the Zawinul Legacy Band is made up of players who have first-hand experience performing and recording with Joe, giving them an invaluable insight and understanding of his music. In keeping with Joe's legacy for musical innovation and the discovery of new talent, the Zawinul Legacy Band also welcomes new players who embody and honor the spirit of his music.

    Keyboardist Scott Kinsey has been one of Joe's most successful students from the "Zawinul school of keyboards" and collaborated with the Zawinul Syndicate on several projects as keyboard programmer. Kinsey went on to play with jazz-fusion band Tribal Tech and contributed to motion picture soundtracks, most notably Ocean's Eleven and Ocean's Twelve.

    Being the youngest member of the Zawinul Legacy Band does not stop Hadrien Feraud from being widely known as a talented bass player throughout the world. At 29 years old, Feraud has already played with many renowned musicians, including Chick Corea, John McLaughlin, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Matthew Garrison.

    Percussionist Bobby Thomas Jr. was a member of Weather Report and the Zawinul Syndicate. After his time playing with Joe Zawinul, Bobby T. continued to perform with Stan Getz, David Sanborn, and Carlos Santana.

    After playing with Joe in the Zawinul Syndicate, drummer Mike Baker moved on to become the music director and drummer for Whitney Houston. He's also worked with such other great musicians as Elton John, Sting, Missy Elliott, Christina Aguilera, and Usher.

    Saxophonist and flute player Katisse Buckingham has performed and/or recorded with the Yellowjackets, Prince , Dr. Dre, Airto and Flora Purim, Billy Childs, Vanessa Paradis, Herbie Hancock, Poncho Sanchez, Dave Douglas, Andy Summers, Pete Yorn, Colin Hay (Men at Work), Lionel Richie, Amos Lee, Brian Auger, Lenny White, Roy Ayres, Simon Phillips, Ricky Lawson, and other notable musicians. He has also played on numerous films, including the "jazz flute" scene in the Will Ferrell film Anchorman.

    For more information about the Zawinul Legacy Band, visit

    More Info

Jeff Tamarkin on the Zawinul Legacy Band

Joe Zawinul's death in 2007 indisputably robbed the jazz world of one of its most innovative and distinctive keyboardists and composers. So monumental was his loss that upon Zawinul's passing, the president of Austria—where Zawinul was born in 1932—issued a statement calling him a "music ambassador who will remain unforgettable to us all."

That is the mission of the Zawinul Legacy Band: to ensure that Joe Zawinul's music thrives and grows even with its namesake gone. When the quintet makes its first Carnegie Hall appearance in Zankel Hall, it will draw from Zawinul's deep catalog and beyond—but one thing it won't do is imitate. The music that Zawinul created with Weather Report (the groundbreaking band he co-founded in 1970 and steered until the end more than a decade later), the  Zawinul Syndicate, and under his own name provides a blueprint for the Zawinul Legacy Band—not something meant to be reconstructed piece by piece.

"We don't have to invent anything, per se, and it's not a copy band," says Tony Zawinul, Joe's son, who founded and produces the Zawinul Legacy Band. "We have great music in our repertoire. All we have to do is use what we bring in as virtuosos and play in our own style. We're playing the music of Joe and Weather Report, but we keep it fresh. That's how we pay tribute to my dad."

Formed in 2012, some of the Zawinul Legacy Band musicians played with Joe, others did not; each considers him a major influence. "This band had great chemistry right from the first rehearsal," says Tony. "They all know the music and have such great respect for Joe that they're willing to take a back seat to the music to make it work. We're doing this organically, just like Joe did when he started Weather Report and the Syndicate, letting the music speak for itself.

"Joe had such an impact on so many different levels that his music still deserves to be heard," Tony continues. "When I started this, I wasn't sure how it was going to sound in the context of today. But when I heard it, the music sounded as fresh as when it was new."

The Zawinul Legacy Band is, of course, excited about its debut at Carnegie Hall. "We're just going to go out there and play," says Tony. "It's been a long time since the Zawinul name has been present in New York City, so this should be a nice welcoming."

—Jeff Tamarkin is the associate editor of JazzTimes magazine.



An Introduction to Vienna: City of Dreams

This concert and The Shape of Jazz series are made possible by The Joyce and George Wein Foundation in memory of Joyce Wein.
Presented by Carnegie Hall in partnership with Absolutely Live Entertainment LLC.
Lead funding for Vienna: City of Dreams is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
This performance is part of The Shape of Jazz, and Vienna: City of Dreams.

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