From deep in the heart of Jersey came a mighty racket. "Suburban Youth Discovers '2112' -- World Will Never Be the Same!"
The rest is history.
Jeff Eldredge - Keyboards/Accordian
Jeff Eldredge plays accordion, harmonium, synthesizer, piano, and other keyboard instruments. In 1986 he moved to New York City and began playing in a series of musical situations, involving ska, reggae, blues, power pop, folk, country, world beat, minimalism, avant-garde, jam music, funk, rock and roll, theatre music, and whatever it's called that they do in Monkeyworks. He resides in Manhattan with his family and his excellent shirt collection.
“My most humbling experience happened in the early eighties. The Everyman Band opened for Larry Coryell in Ithaca, NY. We shared the stage with Larry after his amazing solo set. Larry counted off what seemed like an easy funky romp but as the first few bars developed, much to my amazement I seemed to have started in the "wrong" place. Larry turned around and all I saw was his mouth moving; my mind in a hazy panic, my body sweating and time slowing down. He was motioning me to play the downbeat, his guitar drawn up above his head and then down to his ankles showing me where "his" one was: truely rubbing it in. Obviously, my "one" was nowhere near his. I was mortified!.”
Steve Peckman - Wind Instruments
Steve Peckman is one of the co-founders of Monkeyworks, and at some point, was appointed "The Colonel" by Smit.
An eager student of the world & its music, Steve has never been known to turn down an opportunity to push the musical envelope further; infusing new flavors into a unique swirl of woodwind output. Served on a bed of Monkeyworks accompaniment, what Steve can bring, is an intriguing musical cocktail brewed fresh each time, and that can be enjoyed steaming or chilled.
Steve earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Miami (FL).
Ian Smit - Guitar/Effects
Ian Smit is Monkeyworks' curator, composer, guitarist and resident "Skronk Meister". With many years of playing, recording and writing experience with many New York area bands, he's traveled down countless avenues in many directions too numerous to mention here. Maybe that's the charm that inspires his contributions to Monkeyworks.
The guy admittedly can't make up his mind as to what type of music to play. His playing and composing touch on Jazz, Rock, Folk, African, Middle Eastern, Ambient and Trip-Hop, with a smidgen of Industrial.
Smit has been allowed to contribute to a couple of vocal oriented projects. SwampMonkey is a meeting of Brian Herkert and Nadine Lafond from Swampadelica, along with Mr. Meltzer from us which manages to play de-constructed cover tunes, such as Hendrix, Marley, Van Morrison, etc., etc., etc. We played a version of Woodstock by Joni, recorded by CSN which I didn't recognize 'till about three quarters through the tune, and then we turned it into Summertime, by the Gershwin boys. That's what you get!
"My Rock friends call me a Jazz guy. My Jazz friends call me a Rock guy. My Folk friends, well, they don't call me anymore - seems I play too ‘out there’, whatever that means...”
Jim Stagnitto - Trumpet
Jim Stagnitto has worked in the commercial music world in various capacities for a long time - jingles, musicals, jazz, rock, funk, r&b, experimental, and latin/salsa bands - but his true love has always been in composition for contemporary dance - having collaborated previously with the princeton ballet, beyondance, terpsichore sand, and the avilla / weeks dance companies.