The Gina Furtado Project!
Fronted by banjoist, singer, and songwriter Gina Furtado, the Gina Furtado Project lays heavy emphasis on catchy, relatable, original material that spans the gamut from bluegrass to swing to gypsy jazz and beyond. Critics often remark on the sense that they know Gina after hearing her songs.
Twice nominated for the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Banjo Player of the Year, Gina began touring up and down the east coast in her tween years with her siblings, earning countless ribbons from fiddlers conventions, a strong reputation in the regional bluegrass scene, and a stamp from Bluegrass Today as “absurdly talented”. She developed national recognition with her four years playing for Chris Jones and the Night Drivers. Her latest album, True Colors, was released in September 2017 and debuted at #13 on Bluegrass Billboard Charts, and boasts two #1 songs on Bluegrass Today Charts. Gina was featured on the cover of Banjo Newsletter in the December 2017 issue, along with her original tune “Saylor’s Creek”. She is highly sought after as an instructor at music camps across the United States. She is also the proud mom of three kids; Jonah, Max and Iris.
Harvesting the wild energy and joy of free jazz and bluegrass, bassist and composer Max Johnson approaches his music with love and authenticity. “Johnson is an intrepid composer, an architect of sound and beast of the bass…” (Brad Cohan, New York City Jazz Record). Creating complex worlds of sound, Johnson challenges his listeners to engage deeply and be rewarded with a complete musical experience that is always jubilantly crafted with care and clarity. New York bassist Max Johnson has established himself as one of the more versatile figures in jazz and improvised music, a leader with a strong, woody tone who shows himself capable whether playing tunes with a swinging drive or exploring abstract terrain with a texture-oriented approach.” (Peter Margasak, The Chicago Reader) As an improvising bassist, Max Johnson has worked with legendary gurus of the music such as John Zorn, Anthony Braxton, Muhal Richard Abrams, Mary Halvorson, William Parker, Nels Cline, among others. With a non-stop touring schedule at top festivals and performing arts centers such as Lincoln Center, the United Nations, Lollapalooza, Bern Jazz Festival, Quebec City Festival, Max also has a proli c recording history, having released nine albums under his own name, and has played on over thirty records. In 2012 and 2014 was voted No.2 Bassist of the Year and No. 5 Musician of the Year in El Intruso’s International Critics Poll.
Hailing from the Northern end of the Shenandoah Valley, Malia comes from a large family of musicians. Malia’s musical journey began at the age of 3 with classical violin lessons and took a turn, for better or for worse, with the discovery of bluegrass at age 7 when she attended her first festival, Galax Old Fiddler’s Convention. Since then, Malia has performed with a number of different groups, taken home a range of prizes, and graced the stage of numerous venues up and down the East Coast. Malia has given private lessons in both bluegrass and classical since 2006. Other teaching ventures include appearances on two Murphy Method instructional DVDs and leading fiddle workshops at various festivals. She currently teaches adult continuing education courses in bluegrass fiddle at Blue Ridge Community College in Weyer’s Cave, VA.
Drew Matulich grew up in Georgia. He picked up the guitar at the age of eight after growing up listening to his Dad’s Vinyls as well as listening to his dad playing Scruggs Style Banjo. After several years of playing he found himself immersed in the music of Doc Watson, Merle Travis, David Grisman, and Tony Rice. Upon leaving home to study music in college he performed with several bands of various styles in and around Georgia and Florida. After several years of working and performing in and around Georgia, Drew decided to make his home in the mountains of Asheville NC where he fully immersed himself in the Bluegrass scene of Western North Carolina. Since moving to Asheville, he has toured and recorded with Billy Strings, made a guest appearance on Roland White’s album and shared the stage with the likes of David Grisman, Bryan Sutton, Same Bush, Cody Kilby, and Sierra Hull.