Drummer/Composer Mauricio Zottarelli has been on the forefront of the Jazz, Latin and Brazilian music scenes for quite some time. Coming from a musical family, Mauricio was born in Santos, SP, Brazil, but grew up in Rio Claro, SP in a highly musical environment, and it was just a matter of time before he chose a career in music— or as he puts it, music chose him.
His first few years as a professional musician consisted of many performances throughout his native country as well as studio and session work with different artists and bands. At the same time, he pursued a degree in Computer Science, and concluded his studies in 1997. Mauricio moved to the U.S. in 1999 after winning a scholarship to study at Berklee College of Music, in Boston, MA. He majored in Film Scoring, Performance and Arranging, and graduated from the prestigious college in 2002. In the following years, Mauricio studied Indian music with the amazing South Indian guitar player Prasanna, and studied piano and composition with renowned jazz instructor Charlie Banacos. He moved to New York City in 2006.
Mauricio is a critically acclaimed and award-winning drummer and artist. He is credited in more than 70 albums so far in his career. He is also the co-leader of the jazz-fusion project Dig Trio, which released its first CD in 2003 and received great reviews from critics and audiences alike. In 2005, he was unanimously elected the best drummer at the 2005 Emergenza International Festival for Independent bands (Boston finals) while performing with the Matt Chase Group.
In 2009, Mauricio became a member of Japanese pianist Hiromi’s super group, Hiromi’s Sonicbloom, and has traveled the world in support of her CD, Beyond Standard. Also in June of that year, Mauricio released his first album, entitled 7 Lives, which includes several of his own compositions, with an amazing lineup of some of the best names in jazz and Brazilian music, performing a unique mix of Brazilian jazz, fusion, and jazz. Among his many different projects and contributions in 2010-11, Mauricio performed on the latest recording by the legendary Brazilian pianist Dom Salvador, and has played with his group both in Brazil and USA. His list of performance/recording credits include: Hiromi, Dig Trio, Eliane Elias, Marc Johnson, Prasanna, Esperanza Spalding, Keiko Matsui, Richard Bona, Cláudio Roditi, Mike Pope, Chuck Loeb, Rosa Passos, Dom Salvador, Jovino Santos Neto, Nilson Matta, Toninho Horta, Filó Machado, Cidinho Teixeira group, Gustavo Assis Brasil, Marc Rossi Group, Hendrik Meurkens, Oriente Lopez, among many others.
Also in 2009, Mauricio started performing as a leader of his own group, promoting the music of his solo record “7 Lives”. With his band he has performed across the US in such venues as the Blue Note Jazz Club and the Zinc bar in NYC, the Boise State University in Boise, Idaho, and has also done shows and workshops in Brazil. Following a personal interest in music education, Mauricio is currently a columnist for the prestigious Modern Drummer Magazine in Brazil, and teaches regularly in the NYC area.
Best known for his musicality, impeccable time and groove, his facility on the drum set, and his ability to play in many different styles, Mauricio is often seen performing with some of the most preeminent jazz, fusion, pop/rock, Latin, and Brazilian names in today’s music both in shows and recordings around the U.S. and in tours all around the world.
Besides Lexicon, Mauricio also uses and endorses Vic Firth drumsticks, Mono cases and FSA Cajons.