Mike DiBari Trio
Gig Seeker Pro

Mike DiBari Trio

Band Jazz Blues


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


The best kept secret in music


""Rotary Ahead" CD Review"

I never much cared for rotaries, those circular roads in New England that keeps clueless motorists traveling in perpetual circles until they figure out which way to go, but I sure do like "Rotary Ahead!" and can appreciate Mike DiBari comparing jazz to the circuitous throughways with many possibilities.

Working with two different bass-drums rhythm sections, DiBari has turned in a potent mix of jazz and blues that always swings. The back-cover quote from Duke Robillard and the album's dedication to Barney Kessel are further clues to the disc's appeal.

DiBari swings indeed. "Billie's Bounce" establishes his bebop credentials right away, while showing how the music of Charlie Parker is rooted firmly in the blues. Nice renditions of "Fly Me to the Moon" and "My Romance" follow, and the album showcase his affinity for both swinging up-tempo jazz-blues as well as balladry.

DiBari's tone is great throughout. He used a L5 Wes Montgomery on most of the tracks, playing and ES-135 with P-100s on the others. Frankly, he sounds the same with both guitars, which are strung with round-wounds and run through a tweed Fender Blues Junior. Microphones on both the amp (in an isolation booth) and in the room with the guitar add a wonderful glassy edge to the tone.

He sign on the final track, "When I Grow Too Old to Dream," where I hear echoes of John Pizzarelli, but it's still the guitar that shines through.

- Steven Rosenberg
- Just Jazz Guitar

""Rotary Ahead" CD Review"

Cambridge-based Mike DiBari introduces this set of guitar trio jazz with a variety of standard taking on different moods. "Billie's Bounce absolutely bops, Fly Me to the Moon is nice and easy, My Romance is, well, romantic. But once DiBari, a superb guitarist, whether strumming big, lush chords or picking out a speedy solo, launches into some of his own material, the whole album jumps up to a higher level of confidence. The trios -- he has different bass and drum players on different tracks -- kick back, let loose and soar. Nothing taken away from the openers like a good gig, this just gets better as it goes along. As far as DiBari's lone vocal on When I Grow too Old to Dream, it's OK, but he might want to stick to the strings.

- Ed Symcus
- Tab Entertainment

"Jazzy Classics Ahead"

Praise from the great Duke Robillard - what more could a jazz guitarist ask for? Ask Mike DiBari, because Robillard is one of his fans. Robillard calls "Rotary Ahead," DiBari's new CD, "a swinging session that demonstrates his flair for melodic classic jazz stylings and tasty blues solos." Indeed, DiBari plays like the better jazz guitarists of yesterday.

- Steve Greenlee
- Boston Globe

"Swing Too Tonight"

There's a world where swing, bebop, soul-jazz and the blues all meet. That's where you'll find guitarist Mike DiBari and his Swingtet. A sharp player, DiBari always hits the mark regardless of whether he's shooting from the hip on hard blues, plucking out delicate lines on a ballad, or keeping the groove on an upbeat jump tune.

DiBari actually got his start as a classical guitarist. He's kept the technical skills and added the soul of great guitarists like Freddy King, Charlie Christian and Grant Green. His 1997 album, Jimpin' The Blues, took songs associated with uptown swingers like Louis Jordan and Wynonie Harris and infused them with sharp, stinging guitar licks.

But for his upcoming CD (to be released this spring), DiBari is taking another approach. He'll be offering a set of original compositions that mix his blues background with the sound of jazz, taking cues from Thelonious Monk and Horace Silver. Joining him on record is "Sax" Gordon Beadle, a masterful player singularly able to infuse his soulful playing with blues and jazz. "Of course with Gordon, you can't help but include a bit of an R&B feel," says DiBari. "I wish there wasn't such a line drawn between jazz and blues, because there is so much common ground. I love taking a bebop tune and playing a gut-wrenching blues solo on it."

Besides the hard bop and the blues, expect the band to be working through some other materials on Thursday night. "The CD will also include a take on the song 'Dinah,' which was originally popularized by Benny Goodman and Louis Armstrong," says DiBari. "I also do a slow-grinding New Orleans shuffle. I like to take the traditional aspect of this music, mix it in with some more modern ideas, and see what happens."

- Noah Schaffer
- Worcester Magazine


The Mike DiBari Swingtet - Jumpin' The Blues
(Palomino Records TM799501)

Mike DiBari Trio - Rotary Ahead!
(Palomino Records TM799503)

Mike DiBari Trio - Live at Club 39
(Palomino Records TM799505)

Doug James & Sax Gordon
(D&G 001)


Feeling a bit camera shy


"Play[s] good guitar all over."
- Down Beat Magazine

"Among the best swing guitarists in New England."
- Jim Carty, WMFO 91.5 FM

Mike DiBari began his professional career in the Boston area. After absorbing the styles of many guitar greats such as T-Bone Walker and Charlie Christian, he quickly established himself as a sought-after guitarist in the local music scene. He continues to perform with many critically acclaimed artists of the region such as Sax Gordon Beadle, Doug James, and Boston's own blues diva, Toni Lynn Washington.

Steve Morse of the Boston Globe called Mike, “a well-schooled singer and guitarist.” His music education first started in New York City at the Manhattan School of Music, where he studied classical guitar with Nicholas Goluses and the great Mme Segovia. In 1994, he earned a Bachelor's Degree from the Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he further honed his skills as a guitarist learning from jazz masters, Jon Damian, Jim Kelly and Jon Finn. Mike has also studied jazz guitar with Harry Leahy (who won a Grammy for his work with Phil Woods) and the legendary Pat Martino.

In 1996, Mike formed the Mike DiBari Swingtet, and in the following year released his first CD, Jumpin' The Blues, on his own Palomino Records label. The CD received favorable reviews and was picked up by Hepcat Records and distributed worldwide. Don Fluckinger of the Worcester Phoenix wrote, “This recording catches the spark of live swing as it happened four decades ago.” Metronome Magazine's Doug Sloan said, “DiBari does an excellent job carrying the torch with savory guitar licks and genuine heartfelt vocals.” In 2001, two of the songs appeared on the Shag Archives' compilation CD, Hot-'taw-mighty, which received airplay on radio and in clubs in S. Carolina.

Mike currently performs with his jazz trio every Friday at Boston's Marriott Long Wharf Hotel, showcasing many of his original compositions. During the week, he teaches guitar in Acton, MA, where he is the director of the Action Music Jazz Ensemble. His new disc, Rotary Ahead!, has won the favor of W.C. Handy award-winning guitarist, Duke Robillard, who calls it “a swinging session that demonstrates [Mike's] flair for melodic classic jazz stylings and tasty blues solos.” Steve Greenlee of the Boston Globe recently validated Robillard's praise, writing that “Indeed, DiBari plays like the better guitarists of yesterday.”