Born and raised in Mexico City to Honduran (Garifuna) parents, he received his earliest training from his father, a gifted composer and guitarist. Abraham was a founding member of pioneering jazz groups, Friendship, with Ernie Watts, Lee Ritenour, and Alex Acuna and Koinonia with Justo Almario and Alex Acuna. He has recorded and performed with a remarkable array of jazz artists including Al Jarreau, Dianne Reeves, George Benson, Larry Carlton, Dave Grusin, Ella Fitzgerald, Herbie Hancock, Joe Lovano, Manhattan Transfer, Joe Sample, the Crusaders, Kirk Whalum, and Joe Williams.
He has recorded with a variety of artists like Quincy Jones, Lionel Richie, Ray Charles, Michael Jackson, Dolly Parton, Clint Black, Henry Mancini, Bert Bachrach, Herb Alpert, Barbra Streisand, and Placido Domingo. He is in demand in the Latin music world, recording and performing with Ruben Blades, Julio Iglesias, Paco de Lucia, Roberto Carlos, Luis Miguel, Ricardo Arjona, Ana Gabriel, Juan Gabriel, Jose Jose, Café Quijano, Armando Manzanero, Dori Caymmi, Djavan, Gilberto Gil, Joao Gilberto, Ivan Lins, Patricia Sosa, and Marco Antonio Solis. He has played bass on dozens of movie soundtracks from “Tootsie” and “Terms of Endearment” to “Forrest Gump”, “The Incredibles”, “Ratatouille”, “MI4”, and “Frozen”. Currently heard as the bassist on the theme of “Hawaii 5-0”.
Abraham has also contributed to many of the best loved Gospel and worship recordings of the past few decades. He recorded with Andrae Crouch, Take Six, Keith Green, Second Chapter of Acts, Phil Driscoll, the Imperials and Chuck Girard. He played on the debut (and subsequent) albums of the Winans, Bebe and Cece Winans, Donnie McClurkin, and Helen Baylor. He played on the pioneering worship series from Integrity Music including Ron Kenoly, Alvin Slaughter, Don Moen, and many others. He has collaborated with the Spanish pastor and worship leader, Marcos Vidal.
He is in demand as a teacher of music and worship in settings as diverse as visiting professor at Berklee College of Music and the University of Pittsburgh, and as a teacher and visiting worship leader at Saddleback and Willow Creek Community Churches and other churches throughout the United States and the world. His current project is his band, Open Hands, featuring Justo Almario, Greg Mathieson, and Bill Maxwell.
Other Guitar & Bass Artists
Starting at the age of 16, Lee played his first session with The Mama's and the Papa's. Two years later he was backing Tony Bennett and Lena Horne at L.A.'s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Known as "Captain Fingers," Ritenour became a sought-after session player in the mid-70's. Starting in 1976, at the age of 24, he began his own solo career which now includes over 30 albums and collaborations. Although heavily influenced in his early days by the relaxed styles of Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass and Barney Kessel, he now has his own distinctive sound and fluid style. His list of session work is awesome (some 3,000 sessions), but some of his notable performances were with Herbie Hancock, Steely Dan, Dizzy Gillespie, Sonny Rollins and Pink Floyd. Since the mid-80's Ritenour has been strongly influenced by Brazilian music.