Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Minasi, Dom (Dominic)

Minasi, Dom (Dominic), guitarist, composer, author; b. Queens, NY, 6 March 1943. He grew up in South Ozone Park, Queens. Minasi's father was Dominic Minasi, born Oct 1st, 1901 in Reggio Calabria, Italy. He came to America in 1923 and lived in Brooklyn, NY, moving to Queens, NY in 1930 where he worked as a tailor. He died of massive heart attack at age 79. His mother is Mary (maiden name De Rosa), born June 5th 1910, New Jersey. She lived in Ozone Park, Queens NY, where she worked as a seamstress in a sweatshop. She married Dominic's father in January 1942, still lives in Queens NY. Dominic's brother, Tony Minasi, was born July 9th 1948, Queens NY. He married Pat, a computer program designer and Vice President of his company. They have 2 children, Chris and Marie. His half brother, Eddie Minasi, was born in 1926 NY. He's a retired NYC policeman who lives in California.

He joined the Musicians Union in 1957. He graduated from John Adams H.S. in 1961. At various times he had guitar studies with: Joe Genelli, Dan Duffy, Sal Salavador, and Jim Hall. Backing up top singing groups at rock and roll shows, church dances and the like while still in his early teens, Dom has maintained a jazz trio with bass and drums since he was 15 years old.  But education has also played a major role in his overall musical activities.   "By the time I was 19 or 20, I had more than 100 students, but I cut it down to 95 so I could play six nights a week." A lot of those nights were spent backing up, and providing musical direction for vocalists, something that Dom has continued to do since 1964 and almost exclusively until 1973, when his own trio began to really take shape, coming to the attention of George Butler who had taken the reins at Blue Note from the label' visionary founder and producer, Alfred Lion. Unfortunately, a lack of direction at the immortal label caught Dom between the proverbial rock and hard place and after two records in much less than ideal circumstances, Dom forced his way out. So from 1976-1993, Dom involved himself in a variety of pursuits, freelancing and occasionally performing with Moorman, providing the music for a variety of off-Broadway shows, authoring three books on technique for Sunrise Artistries, and returning to school where he studied with composers John Corigliano and Monroe Cooper at Lehman College, receiving his B.S. degree in composition in 1990. He also composed over 300 vocal and instrumental compositions during those years. In 1993 he began to take an interest in performing again, becoming principal composer for the Manhattan Improvisational Chamber Ensemble and beginning to work on various projects of his own.  By 1996, he was in the thick of it, but entirely on his own terms. This includes developing a program to teach literacy through songwriting and music for the New York City Public School System. This latter has also resulted in a CD for the New York City Board of Education and the composing of more than 300 children's songs.

He has taught at Marquis Studios and Young Audiences. Using the blues as a basis, Dom has created a program using poetry put to music in blues, rock 'n roll, rap, jazz, Latin music, and well known children's books to teach literacy through songwriting. At Kingsborough Community College and Lehman College, he taught Guitar Ensembles, The Singers Forum, Classes in Jazz Vocalization and Reading Rhythms. At the American Institute of Guitar, The Guitar Workshop, he taught classes in harmony, theory and improvisation. At various Colleges and Universities, he been a lecturer on history of Jazz guitar. He's done private teaching (guitar instruction) and Latin-Jazz Concerts and Workshops. He's performed and/or recorded with Buddy Rich, Mel Lewis, Chico Hamilton, Rashied Ali, Joe Chambers, Harvey Mason, Louis Hayes, Bobby Battle, Jackson Krall, Jay Rosen, Chuck Damonico, Bob Cranshaw, Victor Gaskin, Ron McClure, Marc Johnson, Mike Richmond, Harvie S, Arvell Shaw, Bob Cunningham, Chris White, Dominic Duval, Michael Bocchicchio, Ken Filiano, Adam Lane, Tomas Ulrich, Harry Sheppard, Roger Kelloway, Larry Willis, Stanley Cowell, Sir Roland Hanna, Michael Jefrey Stevens, Dennis Moorman, Dave Brubeck and the Long Island Symphony, Jimmy Heath, Buddy Tate, George Coleman, Teddy Edwards, Charles Mc Pherson, Frank Forster, Arnie Lawrence, Paul Jeffrey, Pete Yellin,  Steve Swell, Blaise Siwula, Mark Whitecage, Arthur Blythe, Dr. Donald Byrd, Tom Harrell, John Bollinger, Jeff Arnal, Ray Nance, Mark Dresser, Dr. Lonnie Smith and Houston Person. He leads on occasion five different groups: three duos, with pianist Dennis Moorman; saxophonist Blaise Siwula, and vocalist Carol Mennie; and two trios, DDT with bassist Ken Filiano and cellist Tomas Urlich, and his regular group with Filiano and drummer Jackson Krall . Dom has also completed writing extensively for his nine piece group Time (The Improvisational Music Ensemble), comprised of tenor sax, alto sax, trumpet, trombone, violin, cello, bass, percussion and of course guitar. He had triple bypass surgery in August 2002. Married to Carol Mennie, married June 11, 2000. They live in NYC. She's an actress and jazz singer. Dom's children through first marriage are Dominic and Mary Anne Minasi. Dominic (born Dec.28th 1967, Bklyn, NY)is married with one child, Sophia. His wife is Mellissa. Dominic is an amateur rock and roll guitarist. Mary Anne Minasi, born January 4th, 1970 in Bklyn. She's a legal secretary.

When Joanna Loved Me (1974); I Have The Feeling I've Been Here Before (1985); Finishing Touches (1999); Takin' The Duke Out (2001); Goin' Out Again (2002); Live at Central Park (2002); The Dom Minasi String Trio (2002) with Blaise Siwula: Duet (2000), Live at CBGB's (2002), Live at Triad (2002);
Unissued recordings:
Michael Jefrey Stevens/Dominic Duval Quintet:Elements Two (1997); Carol Mennie/Dom Minasi: Full Circle (1999)
As co-leader:
Dialing Privileges (1999)
As sideperson:
The Sal Salvador Orchestra: Close To You (1969); Ron Smith Quintet: Explorations for Barbara Atlantic Revisited (1999); Elements (1995); Play Me Hearts and Flowers (1996); Ernie Andrews: Girl Talk (2001)

Off-off Broadway shows and films:
Peripheral Vision by Eleanor Speert.  1983
Pots of Money by E. Labiche & A. Delacour.  1984
John & Ellen - award-winning play by Alex Menza.  1996
Torch Song Trilogy (Off-BiWay revival) wrote all musical arrangements. 1997
When She Was Bad by Sally Jane Heit - National Theatre,Wash., DC.2001
Visions of Sugarplums Soundtrack performance (Independent feature.) 2000
Pit Bull (Film short original music) 2002

Radio broadcasts:
1962: Live from Fordham University, The Dom Minasi Trio
1975: WRVR Concerts with Mel Davis live from the Village Gate
1976:  WRVR Concerts with mel Mel Davis live form the Village Gate
1986:  WKCR with Phil Schapp live from The West End Cafe, Dom Minasi     Quartet featuring Dennis Moorman
1987: WKCR with Phil Schapp live from The West End Cafe, The Dom Minasi Organ Quartet featuring Dr. Lonnie Smith
2002:  WFMU with Irene Trudell
2002:  WKCR with Mike Heller
WUSB with Marc Greene
WVOF  the Upper Room with Joe Kelly
WDST  Bearsville wit Gus Mancini and the Round Table

Principal composer:
Carol Mennie-Dom Minasi Quartet, DDT String Trio, Improvisational Chamber Ensemble (MICE), The Dom Minasi Trio, Quartet and Quintet, T.I.M.E. (The Improvisational Music Ensemble)
Dialing Privileges
Ron Smith Quintet

Musical conductor and arranger for:
Carol Mennie, Cynthia Crane and Stan Edwards

Over 500 pieces of music that range from jazz instrumental, children's songs, classical and vocal compositions

Musician's Manual for Chord Substitution - Sunrise Artistries, Inc.- Publisher
Principles of Harmonic Substitution - Sunrise Artistries, Inc.- Publisher
Stress Points - Sunrise Artistries, Inc.- Publisher
Singer's Guide to Reading Rhythms - D.O.M. Music Publishing Co.(due 2003)
The Dom Minasi Songbook - D.O.M. Music Publishing Co.(due 2003)
Reviews & Articles:
Articles in: Goldmine, Sept, 2002, Jazzitude (online)
Goldmine Music Publication August 2003, story & featured article
All About Jazz New York: David Adler  August 2002
Tucson Weekly: Nov. 2001
Jazziz:   March 2002 & June 2002
Jazz Times: July 2000 & July 2002
Cadence:  July 2000 & Jim Santella April 2002
Downbeat:  1975, 1976, March 2002
20th Century Guitar: January 2002
Signal to Noise: January 2002

E-Jazz News : 2002
La. Folia on line: 2002
Dom Minasi Interview & Music Special: "Upper Room with Joe Kelley"

Honors and Awards:
Dean's List: Kingsborough Community College
Honors Scholarship: Lehman College, 1990
ASCAP Special Awards

Contact information:
Booking Contact:
Carol Caldwell
Phone/Fax:  (212) 222-3757
Publicity Contact:
Jim Eigo
Jazz Promo Services
Phone:  (845) 986-1677  Fax:  (845) 986-1699

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