David Andrew Ruffels, M.M.,B.A.
BRIEF BIO: 4/23 David Ruffels is a professional jazz bassist and has been living, working and performing in New York City and it’s extended regions for the past 30 years... David has been fortunate to have performed with Lionel Hampton, Marion McPartland, JoAnne Brackeen, Harold Mabern, Joe Henderson, Michael Brecker, Jon Faddis, Joe Beck, Vic Juris, Adam Nussbaum and many other jazz greats. For twenty five years David taught bass and jazz improvisation and coached small group ensembles at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, CT.
FULL BIO: April 2023
2000-2002 State University of New York,Purchase,New York Master of Music (4.03 gpa)
1990-1992 William Paterson University,Wayne,New Jersey Bachelor of Music
2006 - 2010 State University of New York, Purchase, New York: Adjunct Instructor - Acoustic/Electric Bass/Jazz Improvisation/Ensemble Coach/Styles & Analysis
1998-2022 Western Connecticut State University,Danbury,Connecticut: Adjunct Instructor-Acoustic/Electric Bass,improvisation,small group ensemble coach
2008 SUNY PURCHASE Summer Jazz Institute: Clinician/Instructor/Performer
2010 (since 2000) Greater Danbury Youth Association, Danbury,Connectictut: Improvisation Clinician
2007-2017 Norwalk High School, Norwalk, Connecticut: Adjudicator for annual High School Jazz Band competition
2006 Litchfield Jazz Festival Summer Jazz Camp, Litchfield, Connecticut: Performances, Master Classes, Private instruction & small group combo coach
2002-2004 College of St.Rose,Albany,New York: Adjunct Instructor-Acoustic/Electric Bass
1998-2001 University of Bridgeport,Bridgeport Connecticut: Adjunct Instructor-Acoustic/Electric Bass
1996-1997 William Paterson University,Wayne New Jersey Bassist for small group ensembles
2000 Lake Placid Institute,Summer Jazz Workshop,Lake Placid,New York Bassist for small group combos
1995 Newark Performing Arts Center,Newark, New Jersey Jazz for Teens with Rufus Reid Bassist for small group combos
1995-1996 New Jersey Public Schools Assisted drummer Yoron Israel in performance clinics 1994-PRESENT Manhattan/Astoria, New York City private teaching studio
RUFFELS’ TEACHING PHILOSOPHY
Continuing the adventures of working professionally and living in New York City for over 25 years; from navigating the waters of academic bureaucracies, to the streets of Manhattan, to the changes of Giant Steps; developing progressive, long term, sustainable concepts as a bassist, musician, entrepreneur and human being are the primary goals I strive to explore and instill within my teaching, as well as my own personal evolution. I enjoy teaching the most, when my students look forward to coming to their lessons. I'm eager to challenge and support their efforts to achieve a professional level of musicianship as well as share my musical inspirations and love of the bass tradition and excitement for it's future...
MUSICAL BACKGROUND: David holds a Master of Music Degree from the State University of New York at Purchase, New York, as well as a Bachelors in Jazz Performance from William Paterson University in Wayne, New Jersey. While at William Paterson, David studied bass and improvisation with Rufus Reid and Dr. Todd Coolman. He continued his acoustic bass studies with Dr. Coolman and Hal Galper, while attending S.U.N.Y. Purchase, New York.,as a Master of Music degree candidate in the spring of 2002.
David has also studied jazz bass with:
David has attended masterclasses taught by Ron Carter, Drew Gress, Christian McBride and Mr. Patitucci.
David’s classical bass training has included studies with Robert Black and Linda McKnight.
Dave began his jazz studies at the University of Connectictut with Ellen Rowe, and had his musical beginnings at WestHill H.S. in Stamford Ct., with Fred Pasqua.
PERFORMING EXPERIENCE: Moving to Manhattan in 1995, David's freelance career as a jazz bassist in New York City has opened the doors to many exciting musical adventures! From the spring of 2003 until the spring of 2005 David collaborated and performed regularly with Israeli musicians Dekel Bor and drummer Nadav Snir as a member of the “Dekel Bor Trio”, working in New York City as well as touring throughout the East Coast. They recorded the CD: Stories and Tales, and spent time working with the grammy award winning producer Robert Sadin.
Another collaborative endeavor & recording project was the CD*: Contrast to the Madness, with the “InSpirit Quartet”, a group Dave founded in the winter 2003 with saxophonist Derrick James. The quartet also includes guitarist Scott Hesse and Drummer Ernie Colon. Contrast to the Madness is the group’s debut CD comprised of 10 original compositions written and arranged by the members of the quartet. The CD was produced by Todd Barken, artistic coordinator for “Jazz at Lincoln Center” in Manhattan, New York.
David’s performance career has included work in New York City nightclubs such as:
The Internet Café
The Knitting Factory
The 55 Bar
The Green Room
The Blue Note
The West Bank Cafe
New York Open Center
Bar & Books
David has also performed in other New York City venues:
The Museum of Modern Art
The Brooklyn Public Library
The New York Open Center
St. Peter’s Church
BRIC/Brooklyn Information & Culture studio
Flushing Town Hall
WBAI - 99.5fm
Clubs outstide of NYC:
Maureen's Jazz Cellar, Nyack,NY
South East Grill House,Brewster, NY
Marianacci"s, Port Chester, NY
Silvermine Tavern, New Canaan, CT
Ciboney, Poughkeepsie, NY
Ryles, Boston, MA;
Deer Head Inn, Delaware Water Gap, PA
The Joy of Not Cooking, Stamford, CT
J.P. Cheffield"s, Newtown, CT
Café 9, New Haven CT
SONO Seafood, Norwalk, CT
SONO STATION, Norwalk, CT
BREWSTER STATION CAFÉ, Brewster, NY
Jazz festivals and larger venues:
Newark Performing Arts Center in Newark, N.J.,
“Redbank Jazz Festival” in Redbank, N.J.,
“Jazz by the Sea” jazz festival in Groton, CT
In November 2001, David worked with the Chiquita Green quintet at the Half Note jazz club in Athens, Greece.
His New York experience has also included "trench" work in the subways of Manhattan, as part of the “Music Under New York” festival, sponsored by the New York City Transit Authority...
David has performed classical music with the Wayne Chamber Orchestra at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tulley Hall.
David has worked with the Broadway musicals:
“The Me Nobody Knows”
“West Side Story”
“The Music of Michael Valente”
David often substituted for bassist Ratzo Harris, in the cabaret act of Judy Kreston featuring pianist David Laam, at “Judy’s Chelsea” and “Danny’s”, both in Manhattan.
Since the fall of 1998, David has been an Adjunct Instructor of Music at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, Connecticut, teaching acoustic & electric jazz bass; classical bass; jazz combos; and jazz Improvisation. Since 2000 he has adjudicated for the Norwalk High School Big Band Competion. For the past four years David has been on the staff of the Greater Danbury Youth Summer Music Camp, held at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, CT.
Since 1995, David has also maintained a private teaching practice at his studio in Manhattan, and Astoria, Queens.
SELECT RECORDINGS: inSpirit Quartet; CONTRAST TO THE MADNESS
David Ruffels Quartet/Quintet; ROUGH AROUND THE EDGES
Dekel Bor Trio; STORIES AND TALES
Carol Sudhalter Quintet; IT'S TIME!
AWARDS/HONORS: 2004;Downbeat Magazine:Distinguished Alumni for S.U.N.Y. Purchase 2002
State University of New York, Purchase, New York, Master of Music Degree (4.03 g.p.a.)
Milt Hinton Memorial Service, Riverside Church, New York City: Member of All Star Bass Ensemble directed by John Clayton
Milt Hinton's 90th Birthday Celebration; Danny Kaye Playhouse,New York City:Member of All Star Bass Ensemble directed by Rufus Reid
Ray Brown's 75th Birthday Tribute; The New School, New York City: Member of All Star Bass Ensemble directed by John Clayton
MUSICAL COLLABORATIONS/EXPERIENCES WITH:
Albert "Tootsie" Bean
Sarah Jane Cion
G. Earl Grice Jr.
Angela W. Buchdahl
Ben Carriel, Sr.