THE STORY SO FAR
Victor and the Jake Victor 5tet won the prestigious Downbeat Student Music Award “Best Undergraduate College Small Jazz Combo” for two selections from their 2018 album Twisted Heads, “Salem” and “Call to Prayer”. The album was recorded while Victor was studying abroad under pianists Rob van Bavel and Hans Vroomans during the 2017 fall semester at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam. The album was Victor’s debut as a bandleader and jazz composer.
2017 was a big year for Victor, as he spent the summer as an intern at the New York Jazz Academy, teaching lessons and masterclasses, filling in rhythm sections spots, helping with administrative planning, and generally being on hand to help.
Victor graduated from Lawrence University in 2018 with a degree in Percussion Performance and a minor in Innovation and Entrepreneurship, while also studying jazz piano. He studied primarily under professors Dane Richeson, Bill Carrothers, Jose Encarnacion, and Patty Darling. While at Lawrence, Jake exposed himself to as many different musical situations as possible, including the Lawrence University Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra (percussion), Jazz Combos (piano and drum set), Pep Band (founding member, drum set), Mainstage Opera (piano/keyboards), Percussion Ensemble, Kinkaviwo, Tambo Toké, Sambistas, and the crowd favorite “Partybistas.” He took part in multiple New Music concerts at Lawrence, playing alongside professors Michael Mizrahi and Dane Richeson in Steve Reich’s “Music for 18 Musicians” in 2017, as well as “Ballet Mechanique” in 2018. He also played keyboards/synthesizer in the pit for Lawrence’s 2017 mainstage opera, “Hydrogen Jukebox” by Philip Glass/Allen Ginsberg. In 2015 he, along with the Lawrence University Percussion Ensemble, was a featured performer at the PAS International Convention. He also premiered Dominic Ellis’ composition for solo percussion and 2-channel fixed media, Wreck’s Anatomy, and Joc Polczynski’s quartet composition “Sunburst” for woodwinds/percussion in 2016.
While at Lawrence he recorded albums including BackPocket’s Primary Colors (2015), Rat Park’s 3-track EP Rise Rat Savior (2015), Rat Park’s full-length album Lida (2017), as well as some drums on track 4 of Spencer Tweedy’s 2017 EP Geezer Love.