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Who we are

The Genius Jamtracks team

Ruby Stepp

Raised in a musically esoteric family on the outskirts of NYC, Ruby’s first instrument was a 1930’s banjolele and her first gig alongside her grandparents at a local festival at the age of ten. Her father, a prominent jazz bassist, encouraged her pursuit of the bass as a way, as he put it, of “managing unmanageable weight, learning how to carry it great distances, and make it sound marvelous nonetheless”.  When she’s not laying down lovely lines with the trio, you can find her working on one of her giant finger painting murals, improvising sketch comedy in unassuming locations like the bank, and generally putting a little bit of magic into everything she does.

Earl Honey

Percussion has been a lifelong passion for Earl. From the time he was a child, sounds and rhythm were his primary fascination: how they exuded from every object and how that changed depending upon the impact, how they could be created and developed on a whim with literally anything you could put your hands on. The world has always felt like one giant drum set to him and in his free time he can often be found seeking out and recording the unintentional percussion that occurs from both man and machine in the world around him to incorporate into his own music later.

Jarrett Jones

Jarrett’s first piano was drawn on piece of poster board at the age of six and kept hidden under his bed to practice on the sly after his parents refused to let him play the piano in their house. Entirely self-taught, one of his greatest joys is helping other people learn how to speak through the instrument, no matter how they find their way to it. In addition to creating beautiful melodies with the trio, he loves shooting experimental films in ghost towns, arguing about black holes with misguided strangers on the metro, and being under water whenever possible.

Antonis Tsikandilakis

Antonis is the co-creator of Genius Jamtracks and largely responsible for the UI/UX of the app. He is also the co-creator of PitchBop.
A multi-instrumentalist, he performs with the free jazz trio, Outward Bound, as well as with the FreeTheSopranoPlayer artist collective.
After a few years of being involved in music software development, he discovered that good code feels like beautiful music to him.

Maximos Kaliakatsos-Papakostas

Maximos is the lead software engineer of Genius Jamtracks. He holds a PhD in AI and Music and spends his time in research, software development, lecturing in universities, and running. His desire to keep in shape with playing the guitar is hindered by his desperate efforts to maintain a healthy work-work balance.

Dimitris Neonakis

Dimitris is one of the creators of Genius Jamtracks, whose main focus has been the musical content of the app. He is also one of the guys that created PitchBop.
Primarily a guitar player, he has taken part in various live and recording projects, both as a sideman and as a leader. When he is not playing with other people he spends his time playing along to the beautiful apps he helped create.

Emma Collier

Emma Collier is the PR strategist & brand storyteller for Genius Jamtracks and PitchBop. A versatile writer with a lifelong love of improvisation, she enjoys helping artists shape their stories into material they can use to create the opportunities they seek. When she’s not swimming in language, she can be found hosting collaborative, multi-medium art salons with her quartet, Artemis in Harlem, falling in love with the piano, or somewhere on the mountain.

Dimitris Koutantos

Dimitris is Genius Jamtracks drummer’s teacher. The comping and polyrhythmic phrasing are based on ideas played by Dimitris during many hours of drum recordings.
He got his bachelor diploma in jazz music at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague, after studying for 4 years with Eric Ineke, Stefan Kruger & Felix Schlarmann.
In this period he is doing his Master studies at the same institution focusing on contemporary improvisational styles and composition.

The inspiration behind Genius Jamtracks

Every small town has its local heroes whose influence on the artists born and raised there is undeniable; whether they go on to spend the rest of their lives in that town, or end up famous enough to jet-set around the world, it’s often the impact of these initial mentors that remains the most profound.

For Antonis and Dimitris, the creators of Genius Jamtracks, one of theirs is Zacharis; anyone fortunate enough to have heard him play finds themselves humbled. To call Zacharis a drummer would be an understatement: to them, he’s the grandmaster of polyrhythms and the inspiration behind the creation of Genius Jamtracks. The app’s algorithm is designed as a way to give formal coherence to practicing polyrhythms so musicians finally have a tool to practice within the pursuit of becoming improvisers.
Genius Jamtracks is a tribute to Zacharis, a way of sharing with all the musicians around the world who won’t have the chance to meet him, what his genius inspired them to learn.

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Zach Pinakoulakis

Zacharis, thank you for being a friend, a mentor and an endless source of inspiration.

Antonis, Dimitris