Neko Cortez is a multi-instrumentalist, bandleader, composer, arranger, ethnomusicologist, and educator originally from Dayton, Ohio (the home of the funk) now living in Bronzeville. He was introduced to music at a young age through his father, who is a bass player. Neko quickly fell in love with music that makes people dance, and he keeps that rhythm close to his heart. Musically, Neko seeks to act as a vessel for the music that already exists in the universe. He seeks to play honestly and to heal others through music. As an educator, Neko seeks to guide students towards creating music that is a reflection of life, and to empower students by deepening their musical connection with their identity and ancestors.