Zachary J. Kreuz was born in Columbus, Ohio and moved to Toledo, Ohio at the age of eight. There he studied and went on to play percussion in the junior high school symphonic wind ensemble. At the age of fifteen he relocated to Indianapolis, Indiana and attended The Broad Ripple High School for the Performing Arts. Here he participated in the Jazz and marching bands as well as the symphonic wind ensemble and the orchestra. His private lesson teacher was timpanist Thomas Akins of the Indianapolis Symphony. Through this student/teacher relationship, Zac was starting to get recommendations for jobs playing in local theater productions. He also was getting work with a local top-forty band and with a jazz group that he and his peers formed consisting of all high school musicians.
After graduation, Zachary then attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. for two years. From there he decided to pursue a career in music performance. Moving back to Toledo, he gained invaluable experience working with both pianist Larry Fuller and Johnny O'Neil.
Philadelphia was the next stop and Zac found work with-in two weeks of being in the city of brotherly love. For two years he worked with an organ trio and went on to play with prominent players such as Shirley Scott, Johnny Coles, Tim Warfield, Terrell Stafford, Al Grey, Jimmy Bruno and Joey Defrancesco. He credits drummer Mickey Roker with being a big influence on his career during this time period as well as now. " I tried to see and hear him play as often as I could. We would finish a gig and go straight to were he was playing. I knew that I was hearing something special. He could be so smooth and yet explosive when he wanted to be. He was always been generous to other drummers, in letting them sit in and play. I not only learned a lot about music but I learned about being a man as well. He was such a class act."
From Philadelphia, Zac went to Cincinnati where he played and taught for several years. From that point he decided to go back to Boston and complete his degree. There was no time to celebrate going straight to Chicago, Zac completed his master's degree in Jazz studies from De Paul University. While in Chicago he also recorded an album with organist Hal Tulchida from Japan.
Currently Zac resides in the Old West End in Toledo, Ohio. When he is not performing Zac has been utilizing his spare time performing, composing, recording and teaching in the Toledo Public School system.
He has recorded two Jazz albums with guitarist Jason Quick which is available at the Toledo Public Library. Currently he is working on a recording project with singer Michelle Shelton and has a accepted an adjunct professor position at Siena Heights University in Adrian Michigan.
Zac also has a new site to download his original compositions. The site is: http://cdbaby.com/Artist/ZacKreuz
main influences: God, Kenny Clarke, Max Roach, Chick Webb
Ralph Peterson, Mikey Roker, Philly Jo Jones, Stewert Copeland, Steely Dan, Ice-T, T.L.C.
Sly and the Family Stone, Snoop Dog
George Gershwin, Art Tatum, Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy
Satchel Page, Malcom X, Jackie Robinson and Dr. King