Singer; instrumentalist; composer; music producer; A&R Groove Master Edition; UNICEF Good Will Ambassador; but also a journalist, a television and radio personality, GeGè Telesforo represents a multifaceted professional figure, the best example of the current jazz tradition in Italy.
GeGè’s artistic endeavors began 40 years ago as drummer and jazz singer, when his incredible talent was discovered by the Italian media celebrity Renzo Arbore. Over the years, he has developed his own personal style of “scat” singing, renewing a particular form of vocal improvisation almost forgotten abroad and which has never existed in Italy.
Since the mid 80's, GeGè has brought together the best musicians from the Italian Jazz and R&B scene (Roberto Gatto, Danilo Rea, Antonio Faraò, Stefano Di Battista, Enzo Pietropaoli, Rita Marcotulli, Dario and Alfonso Deidda, Max Ionata, Giorgia Todrani, Marco Rinalduzzi, Marco Tamburini, Amedeo Ariano, Rossana Casale, Agostino Marangolo, Francesco Puglisi, Fabio Zeppetella, Marcello Surace, Alex Gwiss, Marco Siniscalco, Max Bottini, Rocco Zifarelli, Julian Oliver Mazzariello, Mia Cooper,….), performing with them a renewal of old jazz standards and his original compositions using breathtaking arrangements and moving harmonies
In the ‘90s , thanks to his association with Ben Sidran, pianist, singer, writer and producer, GeGè recorded for Go Jazz Records in important studios (Skyline-NYNY; Paisley Park-Minneapolis;….) with the most recognized international musicians, and his undisputed talent has been exported around the world whilst playing with The Go Jazz All Stars, and performing with such Jazz/Funk “Masters” as Jon Hendricks, Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Tony Scott, DeeDee Bridgewater, Phil Woods, Bob Malach, Georgie Fame, Clyde Stubblefield, Mike Mainieri, Bob Rockwell, Richard Davis, Phil Upchurch, Ricky Peterson, Frank McComb, Alan Hampton, Sachal Vasandani, Joanna Teters……
Back in Italy, with leading bands such as PureFunkLive, Groovinators, So Cool 5tet, GeGè Telesforo has focused his musical evolution on his original jazz- funk vocal style, in which jazz elements come together with his terrific scat improvisations to form a rigorous and unmistakable rhythm dominated by groove.
He has produced several albums for his indipendent label -Groove Master Edition- and recorded 11 albums as an Artist and Composer.
Gege Telesforo is currently experiencing a particularly happy period in his career.
Winning the Jazzit Award 2010/2011/2012/2013/2014/2015/2016/2017/2018, as Best Male Vocalist, crowns an important moment marked by the release of successful CDs such as "SO COOL" (GrooveMasterEdition/EGEA 2010) "NU JOY" (COLUMBIA RECORDS /SONY MUSIC 2012), “FUN SLOW RIDE” (SAM Records/Ropeadope 2016), and an incredible number of prestigious concerts, including his appearance at The Shanghai World Expo Exhibition for "The Best of Italian Jazz in Shangai" with his quintet, representing Italian art and culture on the world billboard with Stefano Bollani, Danilo Rea, Paolo Fresu, Roberto Gatto, ....
As a teacher of singing and vocal improvisation, GeGè brings his "Vocal Jazz Concept" to prestigious music schools, Conservatories, and Jazz Festivals in Italy and abroad.
Since September 2012, GeGè has been teaching Vocal Jazz and Improvisation at the Venice Voice Academy in Los Angeles (California-USA).
GeGè was appointed Good Will Ambassador of UNICEF Italy May 23 2015 for his artistic commitment to all the "Children in Danger", one of the most significant UNICEF campaigns. He’s the inventor and developer of the project SoundzForChildren, aimed at the removal of all socio-cultural obstacles that prevent a harmonious mental and physical development of children.
“When I first heard Gegè on The International Doc Club, the television show he hosted in Rome, I said to myself, ‘Self, this is one bad motorcycle!’ That opinion has not changed, nor will it ever. Gegè is bad. He’s good too, of course, but he’s better than good. He’s BAD! When you hear him, you know you’re listening to a soul that’s on the inside singing out, not on the outside looking in. This ain’t no cat trying to git it”.
“Gegè Telesforo, as Jon Hendricks has pointed out, is Italy’s foremost jazz
singer. He has hosted national radio and television programs for many years,
and is a media celebrity who represents the best of the living jazz tradition. For several years, he was the host of television and radio programs that showcased the best international musical talent. He performed with or interviewed such stars as Dizzy Gillespie, Deedee Bridgewater, Betty Carter, Miles Davis, James Brown and Jimmy Smith…... His recordings on Go Jazz have featured his scat-singing with such jazz masters as Clark Terry, Jon Hendricks, Bob Berg, and Bob Malach. But what makes him truly special is that he is both a bebopper and a bluesman. He is Touring continuously, both in Italy and around the world leading his own bands, a hard-driving collection of talented musicians who can swing and groove as hard as any group in the world”…..
….“In order to be a great jazz improviser, you must be a great composer, because jazz improvisation is nothing less than instant composition. In order to be a great jazzman, you must also have your own sound, your voice, that is unique to you and unlike anyone else. By these measures, Gege Telesforo is both a great jazzman and a great composer. His compositions have the same free swing and melodic innovation that one hears in his brilliant scat solos and his voice is both melodically and rhythmically his own. I have been inspired many times by this voice to match words to his melodies and to tell stories that are driven by his fantastic sense of rhythm and his deep sense of brotherhood. His message is our message, and in his hands, the bridge between jazz and funk is complete and we are free to explore the worlds of modern groove and swing. Writing songs with Gege has been one of the great pleasures of my musical experience.”
ABOUT “VOCAL JAZZ CONCEPT” MASTER CLASS
“Gege’ Telesforo is the finest vocalist in today’s jazz world. His scat technique is impeccable and his creativity shines in both his concert performances and his brilliant “Vocal Jazz Concept” master-classes.
Gege’ brings his extraordinary spirit, energy and a deep knowledge of the human scat voice and the physiology behind it to his work. What impresses me most is that he takes a personal interest in everyone with whom he works. Surely Gege’s artistry combined with his professionalism is a positive influence on his students and fellow musicians, who can benefit from working with such a gifted gentleman and rare performer.
I am so grateful for all of the growth and learning that I have experienced because of Gege’ Telesforo. I’ve had the honor and pleasure of working with him through the organization of vocal master-classes throughout Italy and abroad. My teaching career has expanded in a way I did not know was possible and I look forward to continuing this professional partnership for years to come. Gege’ puts his heart and soul into his profession. Among his other great attributes, it’s his sincerity and work ethic that keeps bringing me back to him.
Gege’ will surely continue his legacy of being an incredible role model for male and female jazz musicians/singers all over the world.
There is no one like him.”