Terrence Brewer sitting playing the guitar passionately

“(Brewer’s) guitar work is fluent, and his feel for the groove is unerring…”
~ Philip Van Vleck, Billboard


  • Black American Popular Music; From Ragtime to Rap


  • BA, Elec Music Prod & Sound Design, Berklee College of Music (in progress)
  • BA, Music Performance Cal State Hayward
  • AA, Music Performance Los Medanos College


  • Pittsburg Entertainment and Arts Hall of Fame - 2016 inductee
  • SF Weekly “Best Jazz Artist” Award - Winner
  • Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce "Artist of the Year" Award - Winner


  • Lead ensembles under my own name for 25 years

What is your hometown?

Born in Oklahoma City, OK; grew up in Pittsburg CA

What is your favorite recording? Why?

Too many to name, but the Buena Vista Social Club Soundtrack continues to be an album I can listen to again and again without growing tired of it. The music is inspirational, cerebral, yet tugs at your heart and makes your body want to move - perfect combinations!

What are you passionate about outside of music?

I train Muay Thai Kickboxing

Who were your major teachers?

Orrin Cross III, Joh Maltestor, Dave Eshelman

What is a favorite quote that you repeatedly tell students?

"It is better to be a Warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war..."

What question do you wish students would ask sooner rather than later?

Questions around time management and/or how to practice.

What was the defining moment when you decided to pursue music as a career?

I was 15 years old and saw the movies/documentaries in the same year "Bird", "Straight No Chaser" and Spike Lee's 'Mo Betta Blues"...I was sold!

What was a turning point in your career?

Starting my record label, Strong Brew Music, in 2006; best professional decision of my life and changed my life, positively, forever.

What is your daily practice routine?

Completely depends on the day and instrument(s) I need to focus on in that moment.

If you could play only three composers for the rest of your life, who would they be?

Duke Ellington, Brahms, and Prince

What recordings can we hear you on?

The calling: Vol 1 (Strong Brew Music)
Quintessential (Strong Brew Music)
Mi Historia (Strong Brew Music)
Mosaic (Strong Brew Music)
Of the People, by the People, For the People; Citizen Rhythm (Strong Brew Music)


You can find media and performances here

Proclaimed by long-time music scribe, David Becker (SF Examiner), as the San Francisco Bay areas #1 Jazz Guitarist, Multiple-Award winning guitarist Terrence Brewer is a first-call and in-demand bandleader, record producer, concert performer, studio musician, and one of the San Francisco Bay area’s foremost and sought after music educators. Brewer, a voting member of the Grammy’s, has produced and released 11 nationally acclaimed albums on the record label Strong Brew Music he started in 2006. “Don’t Worry ‘Bout Me”, Brewer’s 11th album, a duet album with Jazz/Blues vocalist Pamela Rose pays tribute to the iconic duet albums by Ella Fitzgerald and Joe Pass. Combined with being an in-demand record producer for himself and others, Brewer has lead his various groups in performing to sold-out crowds at the 62nd and 52nd Annual Monterey Jazz Festival, the world famous Yoshi’s at Jack London Square, Yoshi’s San Francisco, SFJAZZ Jazz Festival, and countless other venues. When Brewer is not touring regionally and nationally, he is on the faculty for the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, The Oakland Public Conservatory, San Francisco Univeristy High School, and SFJAZZ. Brewer, also, curates and creates curriculum, facilitates master classes, clinics, workshops, and lectures for the likes of Stanford Jazz Workshop, SFJAZZ, The California Jazz Conservatory, Jazz Camp West, Blue Bear School of Music, Lafayette Summer Music Workshop, CMEA (California Music Educators Association), and presenting at colleges, high schools, and middles schools throughout California and across the country.

The San Francisco Bay area’s #1 Jazz Guitarist
~David Becker (SF Examiner / AXS.com)

“A melodic improviser with an exquisite tone and an abundance of soul…”
~ Bill Milkowski, JazzTimes