California-born Howard Alden first picked up the guitar at age 10, inspired by the works of the legendary Louis Armstrong, Count Basie and Charlie Christian. In the 1970s, he played banjo in pizza parlors and collaborated with a variety of jazz outfits around Los Angeles. After settling in New York in 1982, he became a key player of the swing revival-he recorded Swing Street with the Howard Alden-Dave Barrett Quintet in 1986. A versatile player, Alden shines on acoustic, electric and seven string guitar and plays a mean banjo. He appeared as a sideman, collaborator and leader on a slew of album since the mid-1980s. In 1999, he played on the soundtrack to the Woody Allen film Sweet and Lowdown.