I’m a jazz drummer and bandleader based in New York City. Over the past three decades I've had the opportunity to play with hundreds of great musicians; I’ve organized my favorites into the four core concert jazz bands featured in the videos on this page.
What are my bands?
My four concert bands are represented by the groups of videos interspersed throughout this page. Each represents a distinct musical project that I’ve developed over the course of my lifetime, based on a particular instrumentation, repertoire, stylistic concept, and core group of musicians.
Where have we performed?
My groups have performed at jazz clubs like Birdland, The Cornelia Street Cafe, and the 55 Bar, and for virtually every summer concert organization in New York City, including the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, Sunset On The Hudson, The Jazz Forum, Summer in the Square, Brooklyn Arts Council, Grand Central Partnership, Woodside On The Move, Staten Island Family Events , Vornado Realty, Dag Hammersjold Plaza, Rudin Management (Cool Music for Warm Summer Days), Music On Chelsea Piers, Harlem Meer Performance Festival, Kupferberg Center for the Arts, and Music on the Stuyvesant Town Oval.
A few of our previous concerts
Goodbye to a wonderful summer: 15 concerts for 8 organizations
By far my favorite part of summer is playing outdoor concerts with my jazz bands throughout New York City. This summer was particularly fun, with 15 concerts for 8 organizations and concert sponsors (with only one rainout!), including the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, Jazz Forum, Live At The Gantries, and Sunset On The Hudson where these were taken, the first two by photographer Max Guliani (@maximusupinnyc). From Ian Kaley, organizer of Sunset On The Hudson: “Chuck Braman and his bands have been performing in Hudson River Park for the past 5 summer seasons. Chuck is fantastic to work with, and always leaves a smile on the face of the event attendees.”
Longevity! The Quintet (together 17 years) performed this week at three longstanding concert series (25+, 10+, 5 years)
It’s great to be able to enjoy musical and professional longevity. My Quintet, which has been together with the same personnel for the last 17 years, performed last week at three different outdoor concert venues that have regularly featured my jazz bands each summer, one for over twenty-five years, another for over ten years, and the third for the past five years. What a fun week! And there's more… we’ll be performing next week at fourth outdoor concert venue that has also featured us for the past several years.
The Quintet preparing for the first of several concert performances this summer
My Quintet has been together now for fifteen years and is working this summer with six different organizations for as many concerts. This is always my favorite season!
The Quintet at Sunset on the Hudson
The first of three dates from our fourth summer of concerts on the Christopher Street Pier for the Sunset On The Hudson concert series. Photos courtesy of Max Guliani. We love this gig, from the beautiful setting to the friendly, appreciative organizer and his helpful and accommodating staff, to the appreciative (and sophisticated) listening audience it attracts. And best of all, it's great to get asked back every year (and looking forward to our fifth season)!
The Quintet at Sunset on the Hudson (yes, again!)
The last of my quintet’s four dates on the Christopher Pier, one of very many outdoor concerts my groups perform throughout the summer every year. I wish summer would never end!
The Guitar Trio at Bryant Park
This was a really fun concert featuring guitarist Khabu Doug Young and bassist Carlo DeRosa. It turned out to make a lasting impression on a young listener, who coincidentally also heard the Vibraphone Quartet at a summer concert for Grand Central Partnership a year later, recognized me as the same bandleader, introduced himself, and then (unsolicited) wrote on my Facebook page: “I saw The Chuck Braman Quartet this week. They were playing a FREE show between Park & Lexington Avenues on 40th Street. This was the best jazz concert that I saw all summer. Chuck Braman is a drummer who is the leader of several jazz ensembles. He's great in all of them, and so is his jazz sideman. He only works with the best jazz players in the business. I saw him play last year with a jazz trio. That group played a lot of Thelonius Monk music. This year's quartet played a lot of Gary Burton music. I think that Chuck Braman is an underrated jazz player. He should be playing week-long gigs at The Blue Note and other jazz venues that feature high-end jazz players. If you get a chance to check out Chuck Braman this year, you won't be disappointed. He can play bebop from the past or jazz fusion from the future. Whatever he does, you'd better believe, it will be a great jazz show.”
The Saxophone Quartet at the Sunset on the Hudson
This is the saxophone quartet performing the first of four dates as part of the Sunset on the Hudson Concert Series. Beautiful setting, great listening crowd.
The Vibraphone Quartet at Brooklyn Botanical Gardens
These photos of the Vibraphone Quartet are taken from a concert series we took part in called “Jazz: Brooklyn’s Beat in the Heart of Brooklyn” at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens and provided courtesy of the organization “Heart of Brooklyn.” A really fun concert that attracted a receptive and enthusiastic listening crowd. From the organizer: “It was fabulous to have your group join us for the AMBLE event. What a really terrific day! Congrats to you and the band for a gorgeous afternoon of music!”