The Musicians' Bios

Henry “The Skipper” Franklin

Double bass •

Henry has worked with “everybody” in the jazz world. The biography on his website will amaze you.  A prolific composer and well-loved and respected artist, he takes special joy in 
mentoring jazz artists in his own generous and encouraging way. I cannot say enough great things about him, so I will merely say he is one of my closest friends, has stood by me through some tough times, always cheered me on, and is the main 
reason why this CD was born. 
Thank you, Henry. “I love you madly.”

Theo Saunders
Piano •

Composer, arranger and artist, Theo has worked for many years with Henry. He truly makes the complex and difficult look easy, yet his solos never fail to delight. I appreciate his input into the arrangement of Under Tanzanian Skies, when tweaking one note by a half pitch made all the difference. His dry wit is surpassed only by his patience with me, the singer who is relatively new on the scene and learns more every day, thanks to stellar 
artists like him.

Ramon Banda
Drums and percussion •

Ramon’s wide range of styles is a delight on this album, but a tiny sample of his prowess. Rhythmically, he can do anything. Together with his brother Tony, he provided the rhythm section for Poncho Sanchez’ Latin Jazz group for nearly 25 years.  As a long-time fellow artist friend of Henry’s, Ramon was a natural 
“A-Team” choice for my debut album. He is such a talented, funny, gentle man and I am grateful he is on this project.

Nolan Shaheed
Trumpet •

Nolan is a secret weapon for any jazz singer. His virtuosity on the trumpet will knock you back on your heels. He’s just as comfortable at the sound board in his Pasadena studio as the producer and engineer. His special touches on the tracks “How High the Moon” and “DeeDee’s Blues” are dazzling and smoky in turn.