The Dream Team

Benjamin Lee

Co-FOunder and composer - Upright Bass, Electric Bass, Guitar, Vocals, PROGRAMMING

Born in Los Angeles, California, Benjamin has worked for 20 years to become a formidable bassist, composer, band leader, musical director, and educator.  As with many young upright bass players, his musical journey began with classical music, but quickly pivoted into the world of music we call "jazz". After studying under bassists Louis Allen, Dave Culwell, John Heard, and Ivan Johnson, Benjamin moved to San Diego in 2008, continuing his musical education by pursuing a B.A. in Jazz Performance at UCSD and studying under one of the most important teachers of his life—legendary pianist and sax player Kamau Kenyatta.

After 7 years on the scene in San Diego, Benjamin made the move north Oakland, CA. Since then, he has put together an impressive track record of live performances, studio recordings, original compositions, and educational work.  

Before the industry shutdown due to COVID-19, Benjamin was performing live with a over a dozen groups including The TOaG Quartet, The Orbital Quintet, The Apollo Trio, Individúo, Rabbit Quinn, MarQue, Pacific Standard, and Felipe y Las Estrellas del Mar to name a few, spanning genre’s from "Jazz" to Bachata, Motown to Pop, Folk to Chamber-music and beyond.  As a dedicated studio musician, Benjamin has recorded 21 albums in the last 5 years as well as a myriad of single sessions, working in person at places like Fantasy (rip), 25th Street Studios, and the one and only Airship Laboratories, as well as satellite from his home studio in Oakland.  As an instructor Benjamin holds a faculty position at Oakland Public Conservatory, serves as a clinician for the Oakland High School Jazz Dept. under David Byrd, directs the The TOaG Quartet’s jazz clinic program at OHS, and maintains a private student practice in person (pre-COVID) and remotely. 

Eli Maliwan

Co-Founder and Composer - Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Baritone Saxophones, Clarinet, Flute, EWI, Trombone, Trumpet, Keys, Programming (yes, for real...)

Eli Maliwan was born and raised in the Bay Area and has 25 years of experience playing the saxophone. He has a Bachelor's of Music from Portland State University and attended The California Institute of the Arts for his Master's of Fine Arts.

Eli is honored to have played at prestigious jazz festivals such as SF Jazz in CA 2020, Winter Jazzfest in NY 2020, Portland Jazz Festival in Oregon 2019, Uberjazz in Hamburg Germany opening for Sun Ra Arkestra 2019, Bric Jazz Festival in NY 2019, The Waterfront Blues Festival in Portland Oregon 2010, The Oregon Brewers Festival 2009, The San Jose Jazz Festival in San Jose, CA 2004, as well as several dates with Salami Rose Joe Louis Quartet opening on Flying Lotus’s 2019 tour. Eli has had the honor of performing with Jimmy Heath, Steve Turre, James Moody, Slide Hampton, and Alphonso Johnson.

Eli is on Faculty at the Stanford Jazz Workshop Giant Steps Program and currently performs regularly with several groups in the Bay Area including: Salami Rose Joe Louis Quartet, Sueños Jazz Quintet, TOaG Quartet, Speakeasē, Copyslut, and composes for and leads his own groups: Saxreligious, Oak Wind Saxophone Quartet, and Rice Kings.

Dup Crosson

Co-Founder and Composer - Drums, Percussion, Guitars, Vocals, Keys

Dup Crosson (rhymes with cup) is a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and lifelong “studio rat.” A Maine native, he has lived primarily in Asheville, NC and the East Bay, CA. He has toured nationally with Lady Lamb, Spouse, and his own project Saint Solitude, for which he’s written, recorded, and produced 5 albums. His music has been licensed across the world in short films, advertisements, and TV shows on Telemundo, CMT, and Viceland, among others.

Dup studied percussion at University of North Carolina – Asheville and since moving to the East Bay has focused on freelance percussion work. Over the years, he’s performed with numerous projects, including Noise in Print, To All My Dear Friends, The Bribes, Felipe y las Estrellas del Mar, Vega Victoria, SAICS, Dirty Cello, and Mullerette, as well as Bay area musicals like Shotgun Players’ Vinegar Tom. In 2017, Saint Solitude released Soul Song Paralytic, an album and multimedia community project with visual artist Dara Lorenzo that was featured in San Francisco’s inaugural Reimagine End of Life festival. 

Neil GOdbole

Production Lead - Mixing, Mastering, Sound Design

Neil Godbole, born and raised in the bay area, grew up surrounded by music.  He began playing at a young age, and discovered his passion for the recording process after seeing how his father composed, arranged, and produced his own records in the 80s and 90s.  

Neil holds a B.S in Cognitive Neuroscience from the University of California, Los Angeles, where he specialized in Psychoacoustics and Object Perception.  In 2009, Neil switched gears and moved away from a career in Tech and took over engineering and production work at the world famous Studio D at Hyde Street Studios in San Francisco.  

In 2011, Neil was named successor to the long enduring Bayview Studios in the East Bay.  After renovations and updates were complete, the studio reopened in mid-2011 as Airship Laboratories.  At The Airship, Neil brings his interdisciplinary experience and background to production and engineering.  Over the years, Neil has collaborated with top producers, songwriters, film directors, dance companies, and many wonderful musicians both local and from afar. 

Lamar Green

Composer - Piano, Keys, Drums, Programming

Originally from New Jersey, Mr. Green has always been determined to do the one thing that has always made life simple: play music. At the age of 7, Lamar picked up a pair of drumsticks and immediately consummated his love for that thing called gospel music. It was through the rhythm of the drum that Green saw a world of possibilities open up. By age 16 he was playing the piano and composing the music he heard singing in his soul. That eternal song inspired Green to pursue his B.A in Music and Music Theory, thus paving the way for all the work he would go on to do as a band leader and instrumentalist.

Currently, Green has his hands in many areas of the music industry, overseeing his on company Lamar Green Music LLC - which composes music for both Top 40 and up and coming artists - as well as working as a musical director for multiple ministries through the Bay Area. 

 

Deborah Hayman

Operations Manager

Born and raised in Los Angeles and currently living in Oakland, Deborah is an experienced partnerships and operations manager who provides the practical grounding for all these artsy musicians and producers. Deborah has managed partnerships in over 30 countries, and has worked with everyone from family businesses to celebrities and enterprise clients. As a huge music lover with razor sharp ears, Deborah provides crucial content quality control for the entire EDBL catalog. She also manages the operational databases and client relationships - all while being an avid nerd and outdoor adventurer!

Alex Taite

CHoral Advisor, Vocals, Piano

Born and raised in Oakland California (and proudly still here), Alexander Taite commands a diverse set  musical skills in Opera, Choral, Spiritual, Barbershop, Jazz, Blues, Renaissance/Baroque, Vocal Percussion and Hip-hop. Having studied classical and jazz piano since the age of 8 - with a Bachelor’s Degree from Pepperdine University in music theory and composition, a minor emphasis in jazz piano, and a stint studying opera in Germany with accomplished tenor Dr. Henry Price III. Alexander brings a lifetime of expertise to his craft. 

With a tenor voice for the ages and a spirit that brings joy to all around him, Alexander has sung with the San Francisco Opera Chorus (every season since 2007), The Berkeley Opera Company, San Francisco Parlor Opera, Livermore Valley Opera, Virago Opera, Opera Parallèle, Island City Opera, Walnut Creek Festival Opera, and The Berkeley Chamber Opera, to name a few. Far more than a gifted vocalist, Alexander maintains a steady private student practice, spent 4 years as Vocal Faculty at Oakland School for the Arts, and currently serves as Director for Chorus Eclectic. He is also finishing up publishing and recording a songbook of his own arrangements of Negro Spirituals in two volumes – one for solo voice with piano, and one for acapella chorus.

From our musical family to yours, we look forward to cookin' up something tasty together!

Joy. Music. Food.

Joy. Music. Food.