Bio

 

Oliver Monaco is a guitarist, teacher, singer, songwriter, and bandleader.
If you have a guitar part, he will play it wonderfully.  
If you want to get better at guitar, he will provide enjoyable instruction.  
If you want a song, he will craft sounds for your pleasure.
If you need a band, he will bring one.



Born in Minnesota, raised in Boston, currently based in Brooklyn Oliver has reflected natural talent and a strong work ethic from his earliest days in music.  By age 10 he received his first guitar, a vintage Silvertone Stratatone from his uncle, and began emulating his heroes.  In high school Oliver evolved into a more complete performer, exploring composition, collaboration, teaching, and improvisation.  He participated in three programs simultaneously after school hours:  the Brookline High School Jazz Band, New England Conservatory’s Jazz Preparatory program, and Berklee’s City Music Mentor program.  His compositions were chosen to be featured in New England Conservatory’s Contemporary Music Festival in 2010, and the award winning BHS Jazz band in their performances and competitions at the Berklee High School Jazz Fest.  He also began teaching private students in the Boston area in high school, and continued to do so as he began college.

He attended the prestigious Berklee College of Music on multiple scholarships, where he graduated with the double majors of Music Business and Music Performance.  While at Berklee he studied with great musicians including

He also received recognition during his studies such as the Steve Holland Scholarship, Outstanding Scholar Award, Guitar Dept. Achievement Award, and repeated appearances on the Dean’s List.

 
In his first year at Berklee he began a weekly residency at the historic Wally’s Jazz Café.  Here Oliver formed his band Oliver Monaco Group and showcased his improvisation skills and formed his group on the same stage that jazz giants like Roy Hargrove and Dizzy Gillespie played on.  Oliver held that residency (first on Wednesday nights then on Friday nights) for close to three years.  Paul Poindexter, an owner of Wally’s Jazz Cafe describes Oliver’s work

“Oliver stands out as one of the most consistent, committed and talented young musicians to pass through here.  His arrangements of standards shows great respect for the tradition, and his originals are lively and full of texture.  It’s exciting to watch a leader with so much talent evolve with his group.  He’s developed quite a following here...”
 
Oliver also participated in on campus groups such as The Julian Lage Collective that served a big role in shaping his musicianship.
 
In December of 2013, Oliver Monaco Group went into The Record Company to record their debut album, which they expect to release in Fall of 2014.