Although jazz violinist Aaron Weinstein was only 19 years old when he recorded his first album, A Handful of Stars, he had already won a number of competitions and played with jazz greats like guitarist Howard Alden and cornetist Warren Vache. Weinstein started music lessons at a young age, but his real breakthrough came when he heard violinist Joe Venuti. Later, Weinstein started listening to Stephane Grappelli and transcribing his solos. He graduated from New Trier High School in Winnekta, Illinois, and attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston on a four-year scholarship. He won two Illinois State Fiddle Championships in 1998 and 2001, and his band, the Stephane Grappelli Tribute Trio, was named the best high school instrumental jazz group by Downbeat in 2002. Weinstein recorded and released A Handful of Stars in 2005, featuring guitarists Bucky and John Pizzarelli, tenor saxophonist Houston Person, bassist Nicki Parrott, and drummer Joe Ascione. Weinstein has appeared on PBS's Art Bear Chicago and was featured as a soloist at Chicago's Jazz Hall and the Jazz Showcase. He also has played in Frank Vignola's Hot Club USA.
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