November 13, 2015

Friday night live at Transistor: Dawá and the Michael Malis Trio. Sound by Jon Monteverde. 


Dawá is a new project that began in 2015 and deals with the synthesis of composition, improvisation and electronic music. Their sound is created through coupling multiple stylistic genres with sample manipulation and post-processing of live performance.

Member bios

Ishmael Ali Zghoul is a guitarist and composer currently residing in Chicago. He is originally from Columbus, Ohio, where he studied music at Capital University, graduating with a B.A. in Music and a minor in Art History. There, he studied under the tutelage of master guitarist Stan Smith, pianist Mark Flugge and composers Dina Letsner, Vera Stanojevic, and Tony Zilincik. Ishmael has performed at many venues and stages throughout the Midwest, including in Ann Arbor, Champagne, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, LaFayette, Lexington, and South Bend. He was also commissioned to write a new score for the silent films "Nosferatu" (1923) and "Call Of Cthulhu" (2005), which he performed at Grandview Theater (2012) and Gateway Theater (2015) respectively. Ishmael relocated to Chicago in fall of 2013 to pursue his master’s degree (MM Jazz Studies) at DePaul Univeristy, which he completed in 2015. There, he studied with guitarist Bob Palmieri, trumpeter and educator Bob Lark, pianist Ron Perillo, and composers Tom Matta and Christopher Jones. His current projects include Zebec, a group that primarily plays his compositions, and The Ali-Humpherys Duo, which performs weekly at Café Bella.

Michael Humpherys is an upright bass player from central Florida who relocated to the Chicago area in early 2012. Michael obtained his master's degree in music performance at DePaul University after obtaining a bachelor's in music performance from the University of Central Florida. As one who loves the great American art form of jazz, Michael strives to bring excellence and professionalism to each of his performances. He has shared the stage with wonderful musicians including Lenny Pickett, Marty Morell, Jeffery Rupert, Chip McNeill, Mike LeDonne, Ira Sullivan, Grant Stewart, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Sam Rivers, Dana Hall, Terrell Stafford, and Bobby Koeble.

Matt is a musician dedicated to awakening a sense of the new while holding down a rich tradition of groove and spirit. His development started in Chicago at the age of 4, when he took up cello, classical piano, and percussion on a "drum set" of plastic paint buckets. By age seven, Matt knew that drums were the instrument he would remain connected to for life. Eventually his efforts brought him to the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, FL, where he received a full scholarship. His broad, joyfully open and inquisitive spirit continues to expand his vision beyond geographic and genre boundaries, enhancing his versatility and enabling him to convey his passion to audiences the world over. Matt has performed and/or toured with Rooms Trio, Marrow, Zebec, Aoife O'donovan, Charlie Haden, Bobby Broom, Dennis Carroll, Ira Sullivan, Noah Preminger, Gilad Hekselman, Clark Sommers, Ryan Cohan, and Geof Bradfield.

Also available: previous Ishmael Ali Transistor performances from:
August 15, 2015 (as Ali/Humphreys Duo)
April 10, 2015 (as Zebec)
November 21, 2014 (as Zebec)


The Michael Malis Trio is a forward-looking, compositionally motivated improvising ensemble based in Detroit, Michigan. The trio's debut album, "Lifted from the No of All Nothing" (Polyfold), features all original compositions by Malis, and was released July of 2015. The music includes elements of free improvisation, as well as moments of highly detailed, through-composed material, with a thread of jazz-informed language running through the entire album. In the summer of 2015, the group toured the Midwest and East Coast. Plans are in motion to return to the East Coast spring of 2016.

Member bios

Michael Malis is a pianist and composer based in Detroit, MI. As a pianist, he has shared the stage with a diverse array of musicians, including notables such as Marcus Belgrave, Jaribu Shahid, Ken Filiano, Andrew Bishop, Dennis Coffey, and Marion Hayden. He also leads a trio that showcases his own original music. He has performed at the Kennedy Center, the Detroit Jazz Festival, The Stone (NYC), and the Detroit Institute of Arts, among other venues. In September of 2013, Malis began his appointment as the Musical Director at the Canterbury House in Ann Arbor. As a composer, he was awarded Best Musical Score in the 2011 Lightworks Film Festival for his score to the short film "Slash/Fiction." He has continued to write music for film since then, scoring a total of three short films and one full-length feature film. Malis most recently composed the score to the full-length feature film "Papou," from Mother and Midwife productions. He began writing music for theater in 2012, writing the musical score for "The Mute Quire," a play by the Fratellanza Theater Company, which premiered at the New Theater Project in Ypsilanti, MI, in June of 2012 to critical acclaim. His second collaboration with Fratellanza, "String Up the Moon," premiered in Detroit to critical acclaim in September of 2013. He started playing the piano at age five, and started writing music shortly thereafter. In high school, he began his studies in earnest with Detroit jazz piano legend Bess Bonnier. After high school, he attended the University of Michigan, where he studied with the eminent jazz pianist Geri Allen.

Ben Rolston is a bass player and composer born and raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan. In 2012, he released his debut album, "Fables." Consisting of 10 original compositions, Fables represents a wide palate of stylistic influences and was well received by audiences and critics alike. The broad vision of music represented on Fables is borne out in the variety of musical projects Rolston has been a part of. As a bassist, Rolston has had the opportunity to perform in an extraordinarily wide array of musical contexts, including hip hop (Tree City), Americana (The Appleseed Collective) and Balkan Music (Ornamatik). Rolston has traveled the world as a musician, performing at the United States Embassy in Honduras, touring the United States extensively for three years as a member of the Appleseed Collective, and participating in musical and cultural exchanges in Japan and India. As a student, he collaborated with master choreographer Dianne McIntyre, and was hand-picked to attend the artist intensive at Ravinia, where he was able to study with Rufus Reid, David Baker, Nathan Davis, and Curtis Fuller. As a professional, he has performed with such musical luminaries as Marcus Belgrave, John Hollenbeck, Tim Ries, Sean Dobbins, Vincent York, Tad Weed , Ellen Rowe , Andrew Bishop , Dwight Adams, Thaddeus Dixon and Vincent Chandler. Following in the footsteps of many other young Ann Arbor musicians, he gained a love of jazz at Community High School (under the direction of Mike Grace), honed his musical skills and taste with world-class saxophonist Vincent York, and then attended the University of Michigan Jazz Studies Program in order to absorb the teachings of master musicians such as Robert Hurst and Geri Allen.

Stephen Boegehold is a drummer, composer, and educator based in Detroit, MI. Since earning a B.M. from Wayne State University with a concentration in jazz studies, Stephen has had the distinct privilege of working with musicians and band leaders such as Paul Keller, Cliff Monear, The Four Aces, and Francois Moutin. As a part of the university's big band he learned from and performed with guest artists Joe Lovano and Danilo Perez. He was also afforded the opportunity to perform at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory of Music in Torino, Italy through a student exchange program. Though primarily self-taught, he spent his time at Wayne State under the guidance and instruction of Sean Dobbins and David Taylor. As an educator, Stephen teaches for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra's youth education program and The Detroit School of Rock and Pop.


Find more live music archived on our Recordings page.