Joey Altruda is an American musician, composer, producer and bandleader from Los Angeles. California. His involvement in the L.A. music scene began in 1981 as a founding member of the post-punk experimental group Tupelo Chain Sex which featured blues violinist Don “Sugarcane” Harris.
In 1989, with the help of drummer Willie McNeil, he created the band Jump With Joey, performing American Jump Swing music and early forms of Jamaican Ska. The group became a keystone in the revival of traditional Jamaican Ska, Rocksteady, and Reggae, recording 4 CDs and performing several times in Japan and New York. During the early to mid nineties, the band broke new musical barriers by introducing heavier elements of Afro-Cuban and Jazz into the Ska idiom and gained further notoriety for backing pioneering Jamaican musicians such as Roland Alphonso, Laurel Aitken, Ernest Ranglin, Rico Rodriguez, Ken Lazarus et al. In 2006 Altruda was awarded a lifetime achievement award for the Preservation Of Jamaican Music and Culture.
Since age six, Altruda has been an avid record collector, holding a wide interest in genres including Americana (i.e. Jazz, Blues, Country, Rockabilly, etc), Afro-Cuban, Jamaican, Brazilian, Exotica, Novelty etc. Throughout his musical trajectory thus far, the music he collects has always pushed him forward into learning how to perform and create in these various idioms. In the past 35 years he has worked with a wide spectrum of artists including Seu Jorge, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, Bo Diddley, Joe Houston, Don & Dewey, Rose Maddox, Levi Dexter, Tom Waits, Joe Strummer, Plas Johnson, Les Baxter, Sir Coxson Dodd, Roland Alphonso, Ernest Rangin, Rico Rodriguez, et al. His fan base holds him in high esteem as an artist who always delivers the highest quality presentation.
Joey’s music has been used in many films and television programs for the past 20 years, including Swingers, Melrose Place, and Sex And The City.
His chord melody guitar playing style is heavily influenced by Jazz masters Joe Pass and John Collins (of Nat King Cole trio).