3 people from 3 different continents/cultures getting together in harmony. Tadataka Unno is a young gifted pianist from Tokyo Japan. Hassan JJ Shakur is an African American bass player who joined the Duke Ellington Band straight out of high school. Jacob Melchior born and raised in Denmark with a love for rhythms and groove. Together we are Trio De SUM. Our main inspiration is the Oscar Peterson Trio (with Ray Brown and Ed Thigpen Special Guest Vocalist Frank Senior. Blind from birth, a native New Yorker raised in Harlem, and a recipient of one of the most prestigious awards, the National Endowment of the Arts.
JACOB MELCHIOR: Born in Copenhagen, Denmark 1970, came to New York in January 1994 after a 6 month stay in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, there Jacob got to perform in the 1991 Carnival with first price winners: G.R.E.S. Acadêmicos da Rocinha.
While in New York Jacob has played with many of the top guys including Frank Wess, Clark Terry, Eric Alexander, Sam Yahel, Harry Whitaker, Joe Cohn. in many of the top jazz club in NYC, The Blue Note, Iridium, Smalls Jazz Club, Dizzy’s, Kitano, & Smoke.
Jacob is a particularly versatile drummer, who often gets praise for his calypso, afro-Cuban, Brazilian grooves, not to mention a strong swing feel and funk pocket, this combination has made him a favorite among vocalists.
Most recently Jacob has recorded: “On Your Mind” with Henry Dee “Bon Appetit” with Carolyn Lee Jones, co-produced and played on “listing in the dark with frank senior” 2008 smalls records.
However before 2010, Jacob had only released one album in his own name: “Steppin’ Up” 1999 Music Mecca, featuring: Thomas Fryland, Eric Alexander, Sam Yahel, Vanja Santos and Debbie Cameron.
As a drummer, my influences are first and foremost: Billy Higgins, "Philly" Joe Jones, Elvin Jones, Ed Thigpen, Ed Blackwell and Roy Haynes.
In terms of music, Sonny Rollins, Hank Mobley, Coltrane, Stevie Wonder, Djavan and Ron Carter.
TADATAKA “TADA” UNNO: Born in Tokyo, Japan in 1980. Began playing piano at age 4, hooked on jazz from age 9.
While attending the Tokyo University of the Arts, formed his first band. Grand-Prix winner of the 2003 Asakusa Jazz Competition in the Solo Piano department… won the Grand-Prix and Citizen's Choice in the 2004 Yokohama Jazz Promenade competition.
In June 2006, As a part of the JVC Jazz Festival New York, performed in New York's jazz club "Sweet Rhythm" with the Yoshio Suzuki group.
In addition to his own trio, he plays regularly with Masahiko Osaka, Kengo Nakamura, Daiki Yasukagawa, Kimiko Ito, Tiffany, Shunzo Ohno, Takao Uematsu, Yoshiaki Okayasu and Hideki Kawamura.
He has also performed with Yuzuru Sera, one of the most acclaimed jazz pianist.
With his improvisational technique, distinctive style, beautiful touch and the love of music combined, Tada is one of the most highly acclaimed pianist amongst the young and rising jazz pianists.
HASSAN A. SHAKUR (J.J. WIGGINS): Son of pianist Gerald Wiggins, Sr., was born April 15, 1956 in Los Angeles, California.
He learned to play bass at age four (standing on a chair) and with his father as a guide, developed a high sensitivity and range of expression in jazz.
At age twelve (12) he became the bassist for the Craig Hundley Trio appearing on television shows such as the “Today Show” Johnny Carson, Jonathan Winters, Ted Mack, “Amateur Hour”, and the “Della Reese Show”. The Trio also recorded an album for World Pacific Records.
At age eighteen (18) , J.J. joined the Duke Ellington Orchestra under the direction of Mercer Ellington. He continues to perform with the orchestra.
In addition to performing with his father, Gerald Wiggins Sr., He has performed with numerous other artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillispie, Milt Jackson, Loretta Devine, Billy Eckstine, Al Grey, Sarah Vaughn, Joe Williams, Herb Ellis and many others.
J.J. also toured with Pearl Bailey and Louie Bellson entertaining the troops in the Persian Gulf.
He was bassist for Broadway shows “Me and Bessie” “Black and Blue” with Ruth Brown and Linda Hopkins. He was also the bassist for the Duke Ellington shows “Sophisticated Ladies” and “Queenie Pie”
J.J. is the bass player in the Monty Alexander Trio and has recorded and performed with that trio on tours in the United States, Europe and Japan.
Additionally his music credits include appearances at Carnegie Hall and the following Jazz Festivals: Montreux, North Sea, Nice, Concord, Cool Jazz, Hollywood Bowl, Saratoga and many others.
Though adept at playing several instruments, J.J.’s remarkable skills are with his first instrument the bass violin. He displays a remarkable technique of skill, flexibility, and talent creating improvisational styles that are identifiable with him as a musician.
FRANK SENIOR: Blind from birth, is a native New Yorker and was raised in Harlem, where jazz played a major role in his musical career.
His style of music is jazz, blues, standards and gospel, ranging from the 1930s to the present.
Early on, he was influenced by artists such as Ray Charles, Nat King Cole, and Aretha Franklin.
Prior to Frank’s musical career, he attended the High School of Music and Art, Lavelle School for the Blind and New York University as a voice major.
Frank eventually followed the music a bit later in life.
He chose to put voice and acting aside to operate a newsstand, marry and raise a family.
In the early 1980’s, after the birth of his daughter, he auditioned and received a small part in the movie “Turk 182.” As Frank said, “After earning this once in a life time opportunity to become a Screen Actors Guild member, I knew that this was the time to take advantage of my status and show my voice now.”
During 2000 and 2004, his unique phrasing and smooth style of singing enables him to reach people of all ages.
As a recipient of one of the most prestigious awards, the National Endowment for the Arts, Frank was able to produce and perform a series of concerts in the New York area; and as a featured vocalist on the CD “New Standards” produced by Robert Kelley.
Some of the more prominent festivals in which he performs are Montréal Jazz Festival and the Lighthouse Metropolitan Museum of Art.