Jesse Appelman

SMC Class: Class: Bluegrass Mandolin 1/2

Mandolinist Jesse Appelman is equally at home in the worlds of bluegrass and Brazilian choro, bringing his expressive tone, solid groove, and grounded approach to improvisation to any musical setting. Growing up in the Bay Area, Jesse began learning bluegrass mandolin at age 12, inspired by his middle school music teacher, mandolinist John Fuller. Later, he fell in love with Brazilian music and eventually lived for a period in Rio de Janeiro, studying and jamming with choro masters.

In the world of bluegrass and acoustic roots music, Jesse co-founded the Lonely Bird Band with guitarist Scott Nygaard and fiddler Alisa Rose. He is an in-demand sideman in the Northern California bluegrass scene and has worked on stage or in the studio with artists including the Brothers Comatose, Mike Marshall, T Sisters, Windy Hill, Mission Blue, Steep Ravine, Paul Knight, Amy Scher & Hailey Pexton, and more.

Jesse is one of a select few North American mandolinists deeply versed in the Brazilian choro mandolin tradition. Living in Rio de Janeiro in 2008, he studied at the legendary Escola Portatil choro academy and took lessons with Rio’s master musicians. He has brought choro music to stages all around California for over 17 years as a member of Grupo Falso Baiano, and in New York City as a member of Regional de NY from 2011-2013. In the Brazilian music world, Jesse has recorded or performed with artists including Anat Cohen, Mike Marshall, Danilo Brito, Rogerio Souza, Vitor Gonçalves, Dudu Maia, Jovino Santos Neto, and Harvey Wainapel.

As a teacher, Jesse has worked with students of all ages and levels at Walker Creek Music Camp, David Grisman and Mike Marshall’s Mandolin Symposium, California Brazil Camp, and as a private instructor at Manning Music.