I played with Massimo almost continuously from 2003 until 2007, in comprehensive and complex group formations, and in acoustic trios and duos. He is a reliable and sensitive musician. He is not an overwhelming percussionist or improviser, but a chiseler of rhythm constructing rhythmic carpets over which it is simple to play. He is especially skilled with the shaker, the Cajon, and frame drums. Not a secondary aspect is his way of being on stage, captivating and radiant, he brings added worth to the show. On a personal level he is the travel companion we all want to have.
Niccolò Fabi: singer/songwriter
I first met Massimo Cusato at KOSA Vermont 2015, where we were both teaching. I sat on stage next to him during his soundcheck because I was drawn to the way he hit his instrument and the feel he was creating. He played this crazy funky style with a tamburello, bass drum and hi-hat. I never saw anything like it. Amazing groove and personality, love it!
John Blackwell: drummer
Prince, Patti LaBelle, Cameo, Bootsy Collins., etc.
Massimo Cusato has made a wonderful contribution to the art of Tambourine and Percussion playing with his creative adaptations of hand drumming sounds to the drumset. In addition his generous and lively teaching style has given a host of percussionsts a new range of ideas to expand their own technical and musical endeavors.”
Glen Velez 2016
Glen Velez: percussionist
Juilliard School, Pat Metheny, Zakir Hussain, Suzanne Vega, many others..
Massimo Cusato is an organic rhythmist. He combines the hand and stick drumming styles from multiple cultures into a swinging, fiery groove stew. It comes across as uniquely his, yet inevitable. I really enjoy Massimo’s playing.
Gordon Gottlieb: percussionist
Juilliard School, regular guest-NY Philharmonic, NY Studios, Steely Dan, lifetime participant-Império Serrano Escola de Samba-Rio de Janeiro.
Massimo Cusato is a talented and passionate percussionist. His unique approach consist of combining the Southern Italian frame drumming tradition in both music and techniques with new modern applications. His well developed command of the instruments allows him to mix the Italian tamborello tradition with modern day drum set while keeping the high energy potential of both. His creative and refreshing approach makes Massimo a great example of the new breed of the 21st century percussionists
ALDO MAZZA: percussionist
KOSA co-founder/artistic director/percussionist
I have worked extensively with Massimo, among other things, on a very important tour, LA CURA DEL TEMPO with Niccolo Fabi. Massimo is a professional, and at the same time an artist. His precision with time facilitates the work for any drummer at his side. And in playing well, he also has a great capacity to interact with those drummers. With great taste he figures out immediately the best idea musically. Furthermore, and not a trivial point to mention, is his disposition. He is a beautiful sunny person, who is always helpful and generous, and never argumentative. I worked with him on my second CD, AVANT LE Also, on this occasion, he performed admirably. I have great respect for him.
Agostino Marangolo: drummer
Pino Daniele, Antonello Venditti, Riccardo Cocciante, Niccolò Fabi, Goblin, New Perigeo, etc.
I had the privilege of playing with Massimo Cusato for a few years and despite obviously knowing the name for some time, I was pleased to discover a musician who, in addition to having great knowledge of the technique of his instruments, also participates extremely creatively in any project in which he is involved. I have loved the percussion I have always found within the artists I have worked. I can affirm that Massimo is the percussionist in Italy that best represents a primal sense of technique, curiosity, and professionalism with what he offers in regards to music above all, because he also has important artistic projects to his name.
Michele Ascolese: guitarist
Fabrizio DeAndré, Teresa de Sio, Angelo Branduardi, Tullio de Piscopo, etc.