Peter Hostage
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Peter Hostage

Band Jazz Blues


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"Motion" - LP released 1986 pop/rock/r&b
"Do That!" - CD 1999, original jazz trio
"Swingin' The Blues" - 2004, original 9 pc. swing/blues
"American Standard Blue" - 2008, standards and blues performed solo, trio and large bands



Peter Hostage Artist Biography

Blues Like Basie
Most musicians are creatively confined to one style or genre. They may be gifted and skillful, yet constrained by their muse. This is not the case for musician Peter Hostage. As a songwriter, pianist, and music instructor, Peter’s style has been evolving freely for over thirty years. His artistic diversity is the culmination of tenacity, hard work, and influence from artists such as The Beatles, Ray Charles, and Duke Ellington. Peter has a rare gift…he can compose and perform Swing like Sinatra, Jazz like Jelly Roll Morton and Blues like Basie.

The Bite of Four Beatles
Peter was born and raised in the small city of Nashua, New Hampshire. As a child in the sixties, he was instantly infected from a 'Beatle' bite during the outbreak of Beatlemania. After this 'artistic infection', Hostage would spend endless hours in his basement banging on the piano. The Beatles led Peter to yearn desperately for a guitar, but he would have to wait to afford one. After inheriting his brother's paper route, he could finally buy one. It was February of 1968 when Peter picked out his first riff by ear - “Sunshine of Your Love.” Hostage had a disdain for traditional lessons, after all why should he when the 'Fab Four' didn't take lessons? The Beatles were his heroes, but far from his only musical influence. Peter says, “The Beatles got me into music, but by the time I started playing I was also listening to Blues, Rock, Folk, and some Jazz.”

A Profound ‘Ray’ of Light
Peter was around eleven old in the late 60's as the Blues revival was exploding all around him. He was especially taken in by the music of Little Richard and Fats Domino as well as New Orleans pianists such as Professor Longhair. A profound moment occurred at the age of twelve when he purchased The Best of Ray Charles. As Peter explains, “The album was all instrumental and very Jazz oriented --that one record did it for me!” As a young musician, Peter was already developing his style and pulling influences from many different and varied sources. From Basie's Blues and Latin Grooves to B.B. King to the kings of swing, Peter was open to experience it all.

In The Zone
Peter is fond of performance. He says, “I love seeing the smiling faces in the audience and being in the zone.” He continues, “I prefer to play with a solid groove without thinking too much or trying too hard to make something happen.” His first Blues band was called the Walking Blues Band because none of the band members were old enough to even have a driver's license. He would play in several other R&B cover bands including Juke, Eastwind and Cold Sweat. In the early 1980's, his band, Dow Jones opened for such artists as Taj Mahal, Steve Forbet and Dave Mason. Even while performing, Peter found the time to attend Berklee College of Music which is renowned for its training in Jazz, Rock and other forms of contemporary music. While at Berklee he had the opportunity to study under piano teacher Dean Earl. Dean Earl was a favorite of Peter and a longstanding centerpiece at Berklee who also instructed Bruce Hornsby in the 1970s.

Do That in Motion!
Hostage started his own band in the mid-eighties and released his first album in 1986, called Motion. The album reflected a mixture of Rock and R&B, and only a hint of Jazz. Motion was intended for the large Pop/Rock audience of the time. Peter wrote and arranged all the songs on the album and performed all the guitar and keyboards. In 1999, Peter released Do That, from a band he created called the Peter Hostage Trio. The album featured a pleasant mix of Jazz Funk and Latin all composed and arranged by Hostage himself. Peter always could tap the talent of the best of Boston area musicians and for Do That he called on Craig Whitaker and Paul Marcantonio to add to his own world-class instrumentation.

In 2004 the Peter Hostage Situation released Swingin’ the Blues. This album featured Swing, Blues and Jazz from six horns - including saxophones and brass – all blaring from his ‘little’ Big Band. Swingin’ the Blues exemplified the influence on Hostage by Count Basie, Ray Charles and has a New Orleans flavor. It featured the typical sophistication and careful arrangements that Hostage is known for. Peter says, “I take an approach to music that is more arranged, instead of sounding like a band playing tunes from a Fake Book.” From his first album, in 1986 all the way to Swingin’ the Blues Peter’s musical style was developing, it was in motion.

Back to School
Peter has always been interested in teaching music, both to children and adults. In 1996, he started Music's Cool Academy of Music with the goal of making music fun to learn. He began in his basement, teaching individual lessons, but it quickly became a full time job. In 2004, along with his wife, he decided to move the business to a new location with private lesson rooms, ensemble rooms, and a piano/keyboard lab. M