Grammy-nominated guitarist, composer and arranger Tom Guarna's natural ability to play and compose with phrasing reminiscent of his idols, combined with a
relentless drive to refine and invent a unique guitar style has made him a desired commodity in the music industry. A Juilliard graduate, he is currently performing and recording with jazz groups internationally, and is first-call on a wide range of projects, from session work, jazz venues, tours, and large arenas. Guarna has had feature articles in Jazz Improv (Summer 2004) and Jazz Guitar Book (2012) magazines for his jazz approach, and had his masterful hands in the following styles of music: jazz, funk, Latin, soul, pop, R&B, gospel, Broadway, world music, dance music, and has arranged for film scores. Equally proficient in all, he "can play straight ahead, fusion, blues, rock, classical, you name it. He's a whiz with effects, but can play convincingly with a clean sound as well" (http://jazztruth.blogspot.com/2012/04/tom-guarna-pacific-northwest-tour.html).
Guarna incorporates all of these styles into his own blend of unique and engaging music, as he forges ahead within his forte: modern jazz. Guarna has recorded five CDs as composer and leader on the Steeplechase Records label, and his highly anticipated CD, Rush, on the BJUR (Brooklyn Jazz Underground Recording) label, was released on February 2014.
"An unequivocally modern record that focuses on both his compositional acumen and a broader textural palette . . . it's about time that the secret already known amongst musicians finally becomes public knowledge." - John Kelman, All About Jazz
"With each track, Tom reveals more and more about his own musicianship. He displays incredible delicacy, fierce attack, longing melodic intonations and just why
he chose these four musicians to accompany him on this album's journey. His own space creation and vibrant virtuosity are the centerpiece of the group. Name any guitarist-Metheny, Frisell, Scofield-comparison falls far short or fails entirely because Tom Guarna is his own guitarist. With albums like 'Rush,' he can also belong
to us." - JazzTimes, Music Life & Times
. Theres plenty to dig on here, emotion, tension, surprise, swing, passion ...quite beautiful . . ."
- DownBeat Magazine
In 1991, Guarna began working with saxophonist and best-selling author, James McBride (The Color of Water), whose band members included drummer Gene Jackson and bassist Tracy Wormworth. Guarna joined Blood Sweat and Tears in 1995 and toured extensively for the next three years with that group. Since then, he has forged his own voice as a modern jazz guitarist, performing with a wide range of artists including: Wallace Roney, Stanley Clarke Band, Mark Turner, Branford Marsalis, Randy Brecker, Lenny White, Mulgrew Miller, Billy Hart, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Greg Hutchinson, Javon Jackson, Les McCann, Victor Bailey, Gary Bartz, Fred Wesley, Mike Clark, Tim Hagans, Greg Tardy, Bob Dorough, Craig Handy, Uri Caine, Chris Minh Doky, The Yellow Jackets, Buddy Defranco, John Benitez, Gary Smulyan, Joe Locke, E.J. Strickland, Billy Drummond, the Mingus Orchestra, The Allman Brothers, Helen Sung, Tessa Souter, Jimmy Herring, Rodney Holmes, Vincent Gardner, George Colligan and Mad Science, and Manuel Valera.
photo by John Rodgers