French- born pianist Romain Collin, who NPR's Jon Weber calls "a visionary composer, an extraordinary jazz pianist and a very bright young rising star in the jazz world," attended the Berklee School of Music and later graduated from the Thelonious Monk Institute (where he held a full scholarship) in 2007. He has appeared with Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Jimmy Heath, and Terence Blanchard, among others, and has recorded two albums as a leader, The Rise and Fall of Pipokuhn and the 2012 release, The Calling, of which All About Jazz said, “compositional flair and technique all seduce, but are trumped by the emotional strength in Collin’s writing and playing.” More info on Romain here.
Raised in Hawaii, bassist Shawn Conley won a position with the Honolulu Symphony while still in high school. The winner of a Wagoner fellowship, he studied with the renowned bassist Francois Rabbath in Paris. Conley, who has since settled in Brooklyn, New York, has worked with many prestigious jazz and classical artists including Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Arturo O’Farrill, Mark Turner, and James Carter, as well as the notable chamber ensembles The Knights and Brooklyn Rider. He can also be heard on numerous soundtracks including “Moonrise Kingdom,” “True Grit,” “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close," and "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty."
Abe Lagrimas, Jr.
A Hawaiian native as well, drummer Lagrimas Jr. participated in celebrated music programs including Betty Carter's Jazz Residency in Washington D.C., where he made his debut performance at the Kennedy Center For The Performing Arts. He later attended the Berklee College of Music. In addition to The North, he is also a member of the popular South Korean jazz group, Prelude, and has collaborated with a host of other musical artists including Eric Marienthal, Eric Reed, Bill Mays and Lalo Schifrin. Lagrimas Jr. is also a skilled vibraphonist and ukulele player with five solo albums, as well as being an active educator with noted musical instruction books to his name.