Santi Debriano (b. Panama Rep. 1955) has been composing music on his acoustic bass since 1982 throughout North America, Europe and the Far East. His abilities as an improviser, arranger and composer have made him a favorite of such greats as Archie Shepp, Sam Rivers, Pharaoh Sanders, Oliver Lake, Freddie Hubbard and others. His work as a leader has been documented on several recordings with his groups.
After completing his B.A. at Union College, graduate work at the New England Conservatory under Tiny Martin and Miroslav Vitous, and M.A. at Wesleyan University, Debriano joined Archie Shepp’s quartet for four years. After a three year stint living in Europe, where he performed regularly with the Sam Rivers trio, he relocated to New York in 1985.
Once in NY, Debriano began working with a wide variety of musicians in the greater New York community including Kirk Lightsey, Sonny Fortune, Chico Freeman, Elvin Jones, Freddie Hubbard, Louis Hayes, Danilo Perez and others. He focused on composing for the cooperative group, Panamaniacs with pianist Danilo Perez. He now leads the band Circlechant, and the bass trio Castle Magic, with bassists Essiet Essiet and Harvie S.
Santi Debriano has over 100 recordings as sideman to his credit, and 9 recordings as a leader. His most recent release is a co- led collaboration with guitarist Roni Ben Hur and drummer Duduka da Fonseca titled Our Thing on Motema Records.
Debriano has taught music in a variety of settings. He held the post Assistant Professor of African American music at University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth from 2000- 2003. He teaches instrumental music to middle school age children in Newark . Along with guitarist Roni Ben Hur and D, Debriano started the Summer Jazz Camp in San Cezaire Sur Siagne, France, and the Adventures in Jazz Camp at Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico.
Mr. Debriano teaches privately from his home on Staten Island, NY.