Since emerging on the scene in 2001, this Honolulu-based quartet has quickly established itself as one of the most compelling and exciting ensembles on Hawaii's jazz scene. The aggregation of John Kolivas on bass, Tim Tsukiyama on saxophones, Dan Del Negro on piano, and Adam Baron on drums presents not only a tenacious and logical progression in the great tradition of post-bop jazz in Hawaii, but the group's sound reflects the diverse scope of the bandmembers' talents and their wide-ranging influences and interests. Collectively known as the Honolulu Jazz Quartet, these four musicians have explored the jazz tradition as sidemen with some of the jazz genre's most distinguished musicians. With backgrounds as music educators and as accompanists in symphonic orchestras, on Broadway and in musical theater touring companies, the members of the Honolulu Jazz Quartet offer their fans a vigorous and innovative confluence of sounds that are the direct result of their command of their instruments and dedication to their craft.
Bandleader, composer, and bassist John Kolivas was born in Hawaii in 1961. Over his 25-plus years as a professional acoustic bassist, Kolivas has performed with hundreds of jazz luminaries, including Larry Coryell, Makoto Ozone, John Pizzarelli, Don Grusin, George Benson, Robin Eubanks, Eric Marienthal, Keola Beamer, and many others. Kolivas spent eight years in New York City during the 1980s as the original bassist for the Broadway show The Tap Dance Kid, joined the company of Big River, and went on tour with The Pirates of Penzance and The Gregory Hines Show. Kolivas has also worked as a bassist with the Honolulu Symphony since 1997 and can be heard on recordings with Hawaiian slack key guitar master Keola Beamer, and on Keali'i Reichel's Grammy-nominated recording Ke'alaokamaile. As an educator, Kolivas teaches the double bass, electric bass, and jazz improvisation, and assists with the orchestras at the prestigious Punahou School in Honolulu. He has also taught in jazz clinics in connection with the Hawaii International Jazz Festival.
Pianist/composer Dan Del Negro hails from the south side of Chicago, where he absorbed the jazz scene around him and has worked with such great players as Herbie Mann, Vinnie Colaiuta, Tiger Okoshi, and Nestor Torres, among others. He also has extensive experience in musical theater, having performed with touring companies of Les Miserables, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Miss Saigon. Berklee College of Music alumni Tim Tsukiyama plays soprano and tenor saxophones in the quartet and is also a member of the Royal Hawaiian Band. He has played with vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater, Bunky Green, John Pizzarelli, and the Hawaiian band Klapana. Born in Kansas City, drummer Adam Baron began playing drums at age 15. He studied at the University of Missouri Conservatory of Music and attended the Berklee College of Music. His professional collaborations include those with Jovino Santos Neto, Shelly Berg, and Carlinhos de Oliveira. He holds a degree in cultural anthropology from the University of Washington.
While early jazz influences such as Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and Wayne Shorter may have given rise to several of the band's musical traits, since its inception the band has consistently offered its fans an inimitable signature sound developed through innovative techniques and the bandmembers' personal experiences. HJQ's debut recording, Sounds of the City, was released nationally in 2004 and spent several weeks on JazzWeek's National Jazz Radio Top 50 Chart. Tenacity, released in March 2007, serves as a further documentation of the group's musical growth and cultural connectivity to consumers outside of the Hawaiian jazz community.