Keyboardist Alan Pasqua's gritty organ riffs and synth textures can be heard on hits by Eddie Money and Giant. He's done sides with Bob Dylan (Live at Budokan and Street Legal), Carlos Santana (Zebop and Marathon), Rick Springfield, Pat Benatar, Sammy Hagar, and Whitesnake. Pasqua's musical roots run throughout his family tree. Growing up in New Jersey, Pasqua took classical piano lessons as a child. During his teens, he began playing in rock and jazz bands. When he graduated from high school, Pasqua attended Indiana University. During the early '70s, he continued his music studies with pianist Jaki Byard at Boston's New England Conservatory of Music. Pasqua's roommate, drummer Peter Erskine offered him a chance to stand in for an ailing Stan Kenton on a short tour. This was followed by a stint with another jazz legend Joe Williams who mentored the young musician. Pasqua's instructor, George Russell, recommended him for a recording date for jazz drummer great Tony Williams. After a New York performance at Carnegie Hall, Williams asked Pasqua to join his band Tony Williams' Lifetime whose lineup included guitarist Alan Holdsworth and bassist Tony Newton. Pasqua's recording debut was the quartet's Believe It LP.
Opting for the more lucrative genres of rock & roll, Pasqua moved to Los Angeles where he was reunited with Tony Williams' producer Bruce Botnick whose other credits include the Doors. Botnick, a staff producer at CBS Records, called Pasqua to do a session with a new artist named Eddie Money. Money began to have hits with "Two Tickets to Paradise," "Baby Hold on to Me." Pasqua worked with the singer in the studio and on the road. Becoming an in-demand session musician, Pasqua can be heard on the movie soundtracks of The Color Purple, Fatal Attraction, An Officer and a Gentleman; the album Russian Peasant was released in 2000. The Music of Eric Von Essen, Vol. 1, which featured Pasqua, Alan Broadbent, Alex Cline, Nels Cline and Peter Erskine appeared that same year, followed by a flurry of solo outings, including Body and Soul (2004), New Old Friend (2005), Anti Social Club (2007), and Twin Bill: Two Piano Music of Bill Evans (2011). ~ Ed Hogan