Jeffrey Zagaria is the son of Pasquale (Pat) Zagaria, a lifetime orchestra leader and a private piano/organ teacher. Jeffrey has been performing music since his childhood and has been teaching all forms and levels of music for over twenty years based out of metropolitan Boston and South Florida.
Early Years: Jeffrey began performing publicly at age four. In his early years he earned many athletic and artistic awards and was a member of the Honor Society throughout his education. He began writing and copyrighting songs, poems and short stories at the age of 10, many published before he graduated high school. The Wakefield High School Jazz Band placed in several statewide competitions with Jeffrey Zagaria as the pianist. As an actor, Jeffrey performed as the character, Emile De Becque, in the musical “South Pacific”.
While continuing to enhance his knowledge and experience in music, Mr. Zagaria attained a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and a minor in Fine Arts in Sculpture at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. He played piano and sang lead vocals for the North Eastern University Jazz Combo during his freshman year at North Eastern University in Boston. Throughout his college years, Mr. Zagaria continued playing in many types of bands with diverse styles as a lead vocalist, background vocalist, pianist, guitarist, keyboardist, organist, drummer, percussionist, as well as banjo, harmonica, melodica, vibraphone, and quatro. He performed on many recording projects for which he is credited under an alias.
Music Studies: Jeffrey Zagaria’s primary early teaching came from his Father, Pat who was trained at Berklee School of Music, Boston. In college, Jeffrey studied briefly under Professor David Walkley of Boston Conservatory, who owns and operates the Willow Agency an offshoot of the booking agency of the famous, Willow Jazz Club. “The club became well known as an “Artist’s Jazz Club” and fostered the careers of many soon to be jazz legends such as Kevin Eubanks (currently of the Tonight Show Band), Joshua Redman, John Scofield, Scott Henderson, Kenny Werner, James Williams, Lyle Mays and members of the Miles Davis Band.” Jeffrey would frequent the Willow and take in the great sounds of many prolific musicians and singers. He also studied piano, phrasing, arranging, and theory with Professor Russell Hoffman, (Joe Zawinul, James Moody, Billy Hart, Bob Stoloff), a Berklee College of Music Professor in Boston. Furthermore, Jeffrey sat in on several private vibraphone and drum lessons with world famous jazzer, and Berklee College of Music’s former head drum professor Alan Dawson (Oscar Peterson, George Shearing, Lionel Hampton, Bill Evans, Dave Brubek, Quincy Jones, Sonny Rollins, Dexter Gordon, Charles Mingus, and many more). Jeffrey also had semi private sessions and friendly music teaching conversations with Maestro Charles Floyd (Natalie Cole) while for working for Floyd for The Boston Pops Orchestra. Jeffrey completed his Masters Class Diploma in Gospel Music Studies from the New England Conservatory of Music. Jeffrey rounded out his education collaborating with a plethora of local and international performers – which he continues. Vocally, Mr. Zagaria has studied the vocal techniques of Re Koster, Mike Campbell, Mark Baxter, Seth Riggs, Bob Stoloff, Graham Hewitt, and Laura Browning Henderson, as well as many personal friends, colleges and family members who are renowned in music, and several of these people have instructed and coached some of the best in the business. “I am forever grateful for the opportunity to learn from such great examples”, says Zagaria.
Performances: Zagaria has performed with many famous artists including: Celine Dion*, Reba McEntire*, Gospel's award winning Richard Smallwood*, Maestro Charles Floyd (Natalie Cole), world renown "Boston Pops Orchestra" (John Williams, James Taylor, George Benson, Ben Folds and many others), Keith Lockhart, and most recently prophetic trumpeter, Ken Solty (James Brown). He also has performed in many church events nationally and internationally.
Teaching: Mr. Zagaria began teaching privately twenty years ago, following in the footsteps of his Father’s career. By the age of twenty five, Jeffrey became a full time teacher in music and voice. Over this time span, he has studied, performed, taught, and experimented with the voice. His vocal method is a result of these and other experiences. You can purchase his book and videos as well as contact him personally at this website, www.zagariavocalacademy.com
* Jeffrey Zagaria was hired as a gospel style backup singer with Celine Dion, Reba, and Richard Smallwood in their Boston appearences in the late 1990's.