Toronto's 2004 Distillery Jazz Festival proudly presents
Justin Time Recording Artist
Nick "Brownman" Ali &
15-piece latin-jazz orchestra

View the event poster

Fri May 21 - 2 shows - 7pm & 9pm
Fri May 28 - 2 shows - 7pm & 9pm
Ticket info at | Fest pass $25 adv or $30 at the gate | Ticket King 1-800-461-3333

Normally CRUZAO, trumpeter Nick "Brownman" Ali's award-winning latin-jazz outfit, is a 5-piece ensemble, but for this special Distillery Jazz Festival performance he has written intricate 15-man large ensemble orchestrations for this MONSTROUSO unit (Brownman was awarded the 2002 Canadian National Composer of the Year Award).  This group will feature a 6 piece horn section, 2 bass players(!), 2 stellar latin vocalists, 3 percussionists and 3 of Canada's finest freestyle rappers - MC Enlight (of GRUVASYLUM fame) and the luminous PHATT AL.

This Monsterous latin-jazz orchestra combines some of this country's foremost jazz names with some of South America & the Caribbean's most respected latin artists now living in Canada.

CRUZAO amalgamates authentic latin rhythms,
jazz harmonies and urban ideology

Nick "Brownman" Ali - trumpet / flugel / electric trumpet / all compositions / conductor (Trinidad)
Jason Logue - lead trumpet (Canada - from NOJO)
Marcus Ali - alto sax / bass clarinet / flute (Trinidad - from CRUZAO)
Jeff King - tenor sax (Canada - from EVARISTO MACHADO)
Josh Brown - trombone (Canadian National Jazz Award nominee)
Rich Underhill - bari sax (Canada - 2003 Juno award winner for Jazz)
Andrew Stewart - 5 & 6-string electric basses (Jamaica - from CRUZAO)
Marc Rogers - 6 & 7-string electric basses (Canada - from GRUVASYLUM)
Daniel Barnes - drumset / timbales (Canadian National Jazz Award nominee)
Luisito Orbegoso - congas (Peru) (Canadian National Jazz Award nominee)
Ruben "Bennie" Esguerra - bongos / compana (Colombia - from CHIVA)
Ricky Franco - vocals (Mexico - from MARRON MATIZADO)
Alex Naar - vocals (Panama - from MARRON MATIZADO)
Enlight - freestyle rapper (Trinidad - from GRUVASYLUM)
Phatt Al - freestyle rapper (Jamaica)
NI.G.E.L. - freestyle rapper (Jamaica - from POCKET DWELLERS)  [May 28 only]

This show guarantees to be a musical spectacle
for both young and old, jazz or latin student or fan.

Brownman is performing 17 times over the course of the Distillery Jazz
Festival with various groups in the capacity as both trumpet player and leader.
 Check the Gig Schedule at for more information.

       Trinidadian-Canadian Justin Time Recording Artist Nick "Brownman" Ali & CRUZAO have achieved much in the Canadian jazz community to date including being awarded the 2002 Canadian National Jazz Award for "Composer of the Year", NJA nominations in 2002, 2003 & 2004 for "Electric Jazz Group of the Year", and 2003 "Trumpet Player of the Year".  This group has also been awarded the Montreal Jazz Festival's coveted "Grand Prix du Jazz" award, CBC Galaxie's Rising Star award and has been recently nominated for the "Canadian Independant Music Artist award".  The group's debut CD "Shades of Brown" (Justin Time Records 2002) spent 3 months as number 1 on the college and community radio stations Canada-wide upon it's release and, along with Jane Bunnett, are one of the only Canadian latin-jazz recordings recognized in New York City.  As a sideman this young hornman has just over 100 CDs to his credit making him one of the most in demand session musicians in Canada.  As a leader his group CRUZAO has toured this country's jazz festival and club circuit  extensively and has been called by the Globe and Mail "the busiest jazz unit of 2002".  Europe welcomed the NICK ALI TRIO in 2002 and 2003 as the group toured the continent and recorded a record for release on a European label.  He has headlined the Havana Jazz Festival in Cuba as a featured soloist, the Montreal Jazz Festival to 120,000 with GRUVASYLUM and the various American festivals, Buffalo's jazz festival calling him "the Canadian/Trinidadian jazz trumpet monster".

Jon Kay
Management to Nick "Brownman" Ali & CRUZAO
New York City, New York