About

Max Schwartz MusicMax is already an accomplished musician in both jazz and bluegrass genres. He began his performance career at the Walnut Creek farmers’ market playing banjo with his family bluegrass band, Oak Grove, and reached the professional level when he began playing with Grammy Award-winning bluegrass artist Laurie Lewis at age 16. He has appeared with Lewis at major bluegrass festivals throughout the country, (including Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco and MBOTMA Winter Weekend in Minneapolis), and will be touring with her extensively this summer (2017), hitting venues like Rockygrass Bluegrass Festival in Colorado, many venues in the Midwest, as well as a live taping of NPR music broadcast “Mountain Stage” in Elkins, West Virginia.

As a jazz bassist, Max has toured throughout Europe, as well as Japan last summer (2016) with the Next Generation Jazz Orchestra, a national jazz ensemble that is assembled each year by the Monterey Jazz Festival. He also was chosen to play bass in the 2015 and 2016 GRAMMY® Jazz Combos and was the only common member between those two iterations of the group.

He will begin his undergraduate studies in the fall of 2017 at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music, as the bassist in the Stamps Jazz Quintet, class of 2021.

You can catch him on the road playing with Boston-based duo The Page Turners from May 21 to June 26, 2017 up and down the West Coast, or with Laurie Lewis on tour from June 30 to August 12.

Current Projects

LAURIE LEWIS

“Whatever country music is supposed to be, she’s at the center of it.”


– Utah Phillips

Playing with Laurie Lewis is Max’s primary enterprise in the acoustic music world. Since they started playing together in the summer of 2014, Max has played dozens of gigs with Laurie, including the 2015 Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival and the Berkeley Bluegrass Festival in 2016. He credits Laurie, who is a fine bassist herself, with teaching him the subtleties of bluegrass bass playing, and for being the first to bring him into the professional spotlight playing acoustic music. Laurie’s band, The Right Hands, features Tom Rozum, Patrick Sauber, Tatiana Hargreaves and Brandon Godman. Catch them in March in Minnesota, at Rockygrass in July, or in California year-round.

THE PAGE TURNERS

“The Page Turners harness the best and deepest parts of bluegrass and old-time sounds as their own unique springboard for some wonderful new music.”

– Bruce Molsky
The Page Turners, Carolyn Kendrick and Jake Howard, are an award-winning group (2016 Freshgrass Best Duo) who have a strong foothold in the acoustic music scene. They met as students of Berklee College of Music, and started playing together through the Berklee American Roots Program. From those experiences, they began to play music together more and grew from goofy friends who loved BBQ and bluegrass, into goofy band mates as well. The Page Turners write sharp and adept original music and put new twists on old favorites. They like to blend their love of bluegrass, whiskey-fueled old-time, country music, swing, and fearless song-writing into one all-purpose seasoning of good ol’ fashioned Roots Music.
They will be touring the West Coast with Max between May 25 and June 24. Check back for updates on their performance schedule!

 

Teaching

Private Lessons:

I teach private lessons via Skype and Facetime, as well as in person while on tour or at home in Berkeley. Here’s what I offer:

  • Upright bass (bluegrass, jazz and technical training)
  • Electric bass
  • Five-string banjo (Scruggs style)
  • Guitar (bluegrass rhythm guitar and beginning flat picking)

Music Camps:

Max has been on faculty at the following music camps:

Fiddlekids (June 2012, ’13, ’14, ’15 and ’16) (teaching assistant)

California Bluegrass Association Youth Academy (Banjo, bass, and ensemble director, June 2015)

Walker Creek Music Camp (Advanced Bass, April 2017)

Julian Family Fiddle Camp (Bass, April 2017)


For all teaching inquiries, please fill out the contact form here.

Gallery

Contact

Drop me a line to get in touch: