I think that jazz is a succession of very strong individual personalities. What we can do is carry on that tradition.”

Mike Melito has been a mainstay on the upstate music scene for over three decades now. Born into a very musical family, there was little doubt he would become a professional musician. He started sitting in on his father’s gigs at 14 yrs old which provided him with a lot of early experience. His first jazz gig came at age 16 playing with vibraphonist Joe Locke who was living in Rochester at the time. The great saxophonist Joe Romano was in the club that night and immediately hired Mike for a month-long stint at the now-defunct Lloyd’s in Rochester. From there, work started coming in, playing jazz gigs with Bill Dobbins and then traveling to Syracuse and Utica to work with legendary saxophonist JR Monterose and trumpeter Sal Amico among others. Mike considers these experiences alone to be priceless as some of these guys worked with Mike’s heroes such as Philly Joe Jones, Elvin Jones, Jimmy Cobb, Buddy Rich, and Kenny Clarke.

He continued to freelance and started leading his own groups in the 90’s around town. Over the years, Mike has backed such legends as James Moody, Benny Golson, and Barry Harris. Other names he has worked with are Eric Alexander, Vincent Herring, David Hazeltine, Peter Bernstein, Steve Davis, Danilo Perez, Benny Green, Harry Allen, Ken Peplowski, Gary Smulyan, Pat LaBarbera, Don Menza, John Swana, Bootsie Barnes, Richie Cole, Walt Weiskopf, and many others.

Mike has been the house drummer of The Rochester International Jazz Festival since it started backing many artists from out of town and being a part of guitarist Bob Sneider’s Trio along with bassist Dan Vitale.

He has also had a large private teaching studio over the years and teaches on his own and is on the faculty of The Eastman Community Music School and RAMP in Fairport. He has also done masterclasses at many high schools and colleges.

Mike has recorded seven CD’s as a leader and is on over 30 recordings as a sideman. His recordings have caught the ear of Downbeat magazine which did a feature article on him. His recordings continue to get airplay all over the world.

Mike Melito has been a mainstay on the upstate music scene for over three decades now. Born into a very musical family, there was little doubt he would become a professional musician. He started sitting in on his father’s gigs at 14 yrs old which provided him with a lot of early experience. His first jazz gig came at age 16 playing with vibraphonist Joe Locke who was living in Rochester at the time. The great saxophonist Joe Romano was in the club that night and immediately hired Mike for a month-long stint at the now-defunct Lloyd’s in Rochester. From there, work started coming in, playing jazz gigs with Bill Dobbins and then traveling to Syracuse and Utica to work with legendary saxophonist JR Monterose and trumpeter Sal Amico among others. Mike considers these experiences alone to be priceless as some of these guys worked with Mike’s heroes such as Philly Joe Jones, Elvin Jones, Jimmy Cobb, Buddy Rich, and Kenny Clarke.

Mike Melito: “To Swing Is The Thing” by David A. Orthmann

A sense of discovery, exhilaration, and depth are not qualities often induced by recent jazz recordings that showcase some of the once innovative, now commonplace styles from the mid-to-late twentieth century.There is no shortage of less-than-stellar releases that...

“To Swing Is the Thing” By Ron Netsky

There aren’t any jazz-rock fusion or hip-hop-jazz mash-ups on an album by drummer Mike Melito. He is a jazz purist. So it’s not surprising that his eighth album, aptly named “To Swing Is The Thing,” is composed of jazz classics and less familiar tunes worthy of...

Mike on Drum Factory Podcast

Hosted by Drum Factory Direct chief creative officer Mike Dawson, Drum Candy is the definitive podcast for gear-obsessed drummers with an insatiable hunger for non-stop shop talk. Each episode will include product demos and interviews with the world's top drummers,...

CONTACT
Contact Us

EVENTS

No event found!

2024 June

Week 3

Mon 27
Tue 28
Wed 29
Thu 30
Fri 31
Sat 1
Sun 2
Mon 3
Tue 4
Wed 5
Thu 6
Fri 7
Sat 8
Sun 9
Mon 10
Tue 11
Wed 12
Thu 13
Fri 14
Sat 15
Sun 16
Mon 17
Tue 18
Wed 19
Thu 20
Fri 21
Sat 22
Sun 23
Mon 24
Tue 25
Wed 26
Thu 27
Fri 28
Sat 29
Sun 30

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This