Rachel Z, also known as Rachel Carmel Nicolazzo, has been playing the piano since the age of seven. Since then she’s played with giants of the 20th century jazz scene including Wayne Shorter, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White. In 2010 she will open the festival main stage on Sunday (June 27) with Omar Hakim on drums! Later in the day she will appear on the gazebo stage.
Her recent project, titled Dept. of Good and Evil, features drummer and husband Bobby Rae and bassist Maeve Royce. According to Rachel’s Wikipedia article the trio’s “ideas for transforming modern pop songs into jazz masterpieces … have thrust this group into the forefront of modern jazz.” Their self-titled 2007 release can be purchased from Amazon as a CD.
Her Official Site includes a biography and discography.