Rich Stein is an active composer, guitarist and educator on Long Island. As a teenager, Rich played viola in the Detroit Symphony Youth Orchestra and the Blue Lake International Youth Symphony before switching to guitar at 16. Subsequently his teachers included classical guitar virtuoso Douglas Niedt, jazz giant Herb Ellis, rock/experimental visionary Robert Fripp and celtic/acoustic master Richard Thompson. Moving to New York in 1982, Rich received his BA in Music and later his MA in Music Composition (both at Queens College, CUNY) in 1989. Committed to synthesizing his passion for classical, rock and folk music into a unified compositional language, Rich redefined his musical direction with the release of his CD Counterclockwise in 2007.
In addition to writing diverse music for guitar, Rich also writes string orchestra music, which has been performed by The Hampton Chamber Orchestra, The Metropolitan Youth Orchestra, and NYASTA Violafest among others. As a clinician, Rich has presented workshops at The Balanced Mind Conference and the NYSSMA All-State Conference. Rich continues to teach orchestra, guitar and music theory at Carle Place High School on Long Island, a position he has held since 1990.
Dr. Andrew Perea–Violin/viola
Dr. Andrew Perea has been in the music profession for over twenty-five years. In that time, he has run the gamut of the music industry – conducting symphony orchestras, performing solos, and playing with various contemporary groups.
He loves every aspect of his work, including exploring music of diverse styles and cultures. His many collaborations include concerts with such legendary artists as Yanni, Johnny Mathis, Herb Alpert, Ray Charles, and the world-renowned violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman.
Andrew is pretty outspoken about Counterclockwise, describing the ensemble as “…an explosive group that plays catchy, jamming music, featuring five of the most dynamic instrumentalists on Long Island.”
Rebecca Perea, a native of the greater Boston area, grew up in an environment where music and art were always an integral part of life. As a teenager, Ms. Perea discovered the deep, lush tones of the cello, and has since been creating her own unique style and ‘voice’ on her instrument. In her career, Rebecca has studied with some of the foremost teachers, including Paul Olefsky, former Principal of the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy. She has given extensive performances throughout the United States and Europe, highlighted by a tour of Hungary, Austria, and the former Yugoslavia. In addition to having been principal cellist of the Temple Chamber Orchestra and Austin Musical Theatre, Rebecca has supported the performance of 20th century literature, premiering works in the Long Island Composer’s Symposium in Southampton. She really enjoys her work in the recording studio and, as well, performing with up and coming New York area composers/singer-songwriters, some of which include Alan Semerdjian, Philip A. Jimenez (of Wheatus fame), Mark Yodice, and the award–winning Patricia Shih. She is currently a member of the Vintage String Quartet, the Hampton Chamber Orchestra, the Phoenix Trio, The June Rise, The Beatles Magical Orchestra, Bach & Forth, and, of course… the Counterclockwise Ensemble. Ms. Perea has performed with many top artists, including Natalie Cole and Bobby McFerrin. She performs on a 1995 Hermann Bachle cello.
Glen Saunders has had a varied musical career. Trained in the classics at Juilliard and Manhattan School of Music, Glen worked for many years in orchestra and opera. Credits include New Jersey Symphony, Princeton Chamber Orchestra, the Amato Opera, and the Gregg Smith Singers. Equally at home in popular music, Glen spent 4 years touring and recording with the Scofflaws, plays jazz with Durasoul and swing with the Jumpers Orchestra. He is excited to be playing with the Counterclockwise Ensemble as it draws on all his musical experiences and is just good music.
Philip A. Jimenez–percussion
Philip A. Jimenez is a multi-platinum record producer, songwriter, arranger, singer, multi-instrumentalist who has toured all over the world performing in front of as many as 100,000 people. In addition to playing drums and percussion with The Counterclockwise Ensemble, Philip produces and records the group’s records and has worked with Rich Stein for decades now on various albums and music projects.
Philip has been a studio owner in Huntington, NY for more than 20 years. Recently he and his wife bought a three-hundred-year-old dairy farm and have converted the old milk house into a full-fledged recording studio (Milk House Studios). The studio already boasts many releases locally and internationally and continues to be a hub of creativity and artistic fulfillment.