Kurt Ribak Trio
Gig Seeker Pro

Kurt Ribak Trio

Berkeley, California, United States

Berkeley, California, United States
Band Jazz Latin


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Stephen Bigger reference"

September 2, 2010

To Whom it May Concern,

I am writing to highly recommend Kurt Ribak as a musician, band leader, performer, and composer. His music is energetic, well crafted, wonderfully appropriate for a wide variety of events and applications, and is worthy of deeper study. His band is comprised of amazing musicians and performers in their own right. Every note they play is inspired and yet accessible to audiences of all ages and musical tastes.

As an artist, Kurt Ribak is a refreshing participant in the list of artists you may know and love. He is a significant force in the industry today. Time will absolutely prove his compositions and arrangements will stand the test of time. His music is infinitely listenable, danceable, and enjoyable.

I have known Kurt Ribak since 2003 while I was the Music Director for an East Bay Church. He played for weekly services and events- always on time, always with an amazing attitude, and always the consummate professional.

As a businessman in the entertainment industry, I am extremely proud of Kurt’s partnership in a variety of events, recordings, performances, and concerts I have produced over the past 8 years. He provided music for my recent wedding reception, and I have heard nothing but praise from the guests- many of whom are professional musicians, performers, and arts educators in their own right. The response was a resounding “thumbs up!” for his participation.

I urge you as promoter, club owner, event planner, music director, prospective wedding participant or coordinator to run… do not walk! to the phone and call or email Kurt Ribak immediately! Secure his services as soon as possible. I guarantee you will be pleased with whatever artistic or performance role you hire him to provide you.


Stephen L. Bigger
President, RockArbor Music
Director, Santa Cruz World Choir & Orchestra
Extremely Satisfied Customer.
PO Box 3400
Santa Cruz, CA 95063
- Stephen L. Bigger

"review excerpts"

Comments on the "more" CD by Chris Cortez, announcer and producer for KCSM-FM and drummer for the reggae band "Native Elements"

"...Kurt's ability to take you on a journey from the deepest waters of the Caribbean to the funky alleys of the urban jungle in one listening makes him a truly gifted original in my book."

"...listening to Kurt's writing and bass playing makes me feel happy not unlike Ray Brown's ability to put a smile on my face."

Comments on the CDs by Whit Browne, famed bassist and instructor at Berklee College of Music.

"Hey Kurt - received the trio CD's you sent. Sounds great ! Great trio playing that sounds tight. You've captured a lot of nice sounding grooves and moods reminiscent of some of the guys we all have been listening to.

Whit said, "Some of the grooves that particularly stand out are on the "Trio" recording:
"Finally Home" Monty Alexander trio with Ray Brown
"Pseudoafrocubanismo" a la Ahmad Jamal
"Swaying in the Breeze" - Red Gardland trio groove
"Obsessions" - Bill Evans trio broken time feel with Scott LaFaro
"Roy" ala New Orleans 2nd line groove ..."Yeah! - all right" (I heard you)"
"The Munsters Have Martinis" -- melody sounds like Monk with a Mingus like bass solo."

The "More" recording:
"Jupiter Step" - nice big bass tone, reggae meets swing, (Bob Marley bassist) Family Man Barrett meets (Ray Brown trio pianist) Gene Harris"
"Fool For Love" - haunting melody

Other comments -

"You play bass the way it's supposed to be played." - former Jaco Pastorius sideman Bryan Melvin

"Your playing reminds me of my favorite bassist, Curtis Counce." - Johnny Otis, legendary R&B and jazz bandleader and DJ

"Delicious" - Contra Costa Times - fair use


Kurt Ribak Trio - "Kurt Ribak Trio" Rodia Records, 2005
Kurt Ribak Trio - "more" Rodia Records, 2007
Kurt Ribak Trio - "gone" Rodia Records, 2009



Kurt Ribak founded the Kurt Ribak Trio/Quartet as a vehicle for playing his original compositions. Kurt Ribak composes the lion's share of the music his group plays. Kurt considers himself a jazz musician first and foremost, but his compositions reflect his eclectic experiences as a working musician. He has played in everything from Latin groups to R&B and reggae bands, with stints in blues groups and circus bands breaking things up. A father with a deep love of tangos and traditional Latin music also left a big imprint on Kurt's musical influences.

Kurt's earliest influence was classical music, performing as a child in the San Francisco Boys' Chorus. Chorus experiences included performing with the San Francisco Symphony and San Francisco Opera. Kurt also spent many years playing cello before he moved to focusing on bass.

Kurt cites Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus as his original primary influences as a songwriter. Over time Duke Ellington as well as music of the Caribbean and Latin America increasingly influenced Kurt's writing. Other tunes of his reflect a love of the music of New Orleans, both its traditional jazz and its rhythm and blues music.

Kurt's compositions continue to be the bulk of the repertoire of his Trio but featured tunes include select standards by Duke Ellington, Hoagy Carmichael, Harold Arlen, and other contributors to the Great American Songbook.

Kurt Ribak Trio/Quartet

At a Glance

How do you pronounce Ribak?: REE-bok, like the shoes

Style: Soulful, eclectic, and accessible original jazz.

Instrumentation: Piano/keyboards, upright bass, drums


Friday, December 31, 8 PM to 12:20 AM
The Kurt Ribak Trio - Original Jazz
Prima Ristorante - http://primaristorante.com/
1522 North Main Street, Walnut Creek, CA

Notable Prior Gigs:
The Kurt Ribak Quartet performed at Yoshi's in Oakland on Monday, July 19, 2010 at 8 PM - one set only. We previously performed at Yoshi's San Francisco on June 30, 2009.

Kurt was interviewed by Alisa Clancy on KCSM-FM 91.1 at 9 AM on Wednesday, June 24, 2009. This was Kurt's fifth appearance on KCSM-FM. Kurt is planning a number of radio interviews in anticipation of the July 19 show at Yoshi's Oakland.

Venues Kurt Ribak has played:

Fillmore Street Jazz Festival, San Francisco Jazz Festival, North Beach Jazz Festival, Union Street Jazz Festival, Shasta County Blues Festival, American Arts Festival, San Anselmo Art & Design Festival, and Yerba Buena Gardens.

Nightclubs and Restaurants
Yoshi’s, Pearl's, Pres a Vi, Chaya Brasserie, Prima Ristorante, Enrico’s, Hotel De Anza, Bruno’s, Shanghai 1930, Downtown Restaurant, Andrew Jaeger's House of Seafood and Jazz, Jupiter, Paragon, LJ's Martini Club and Grille, The Albatross, Freight & Salvage, Club Deluxe, Café Bastille, Café Claude, Café de la Presse, Hi-Ball Lounge, Maritime Hall, San Francisco Legion of Honor, and many others.

First United Methodist (Pt. Richmond, CA), Moraga Valley Presbyterian Church (Moraga, CA), Christian Church of Pacific Grove (Pacific Grove, CA), and Lafayette United Methodist Church (Lafayette, CA).

Radio Shows
KCSM-FM (San Mateo, CA) Mid-Day Jazz, West Coast Live (KALW-FM, San Francisco, CA), KCSM Desert Island Jazz, KRKD (Oakland, CA) and others.

Gig info: http://www.ribak.com/gigs.html

CD info

Our first CD, "Kurt Ribak Trio" is now back in print after selling out its initial run. Our second CD, "more" is also almost sold out of its initial run. Our third CD, "gone" has been released. You can hear samples of them and purchase it at http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/kurtribaktrio.

All three CDs receive steady airplay on KCSM, KPFA, KKUP, and other stations.

You can also purchase them at http://www.afm6.org/cdstore.htm and at amazon.com. They are available for download at emusic.com and iTunes. You can also buy the CDs at Groove Yard, 5555 Claremont Avenue Oakland, CA 94618 and at Down Home Music, 10341 San Pablo Avenue, El Cerrito, CA 94530.

Contact: Kurt Ribak

Phone: 510-703-7035

e-mail: kurt@ribak.com

fax: 510-528-4774

postal mail:
P.O. Box 8045,
Berkeley, CA 94707-8045


Who’s Kurt Ribak?

Kurt Ribak (pronounced REE-bok, like the shoes) grew up in Berkeley, CA. Early musical experiences included singing in the San Francisco Boys Chorus. In grade school Kurt began studying the cello. Kurt later studied with major cellists, including Bonnie Hampton, Susie Napper, and Elisabeth LeGuin.

While a student at UC Berkeley Kurt began playing electric bass, buying his first good bass with money made working as a janitor. At Cal he continued to play classical music and studied jazz under Neal Heidler and Jeremy Cohen while playing in the UC Jazz Ensembles, where he met and first played with pianist Greg Sankovich. Kurt also studied West African drumming with C.K. Ladzekpo and spent summers teaching a