Gabriel is a native of Transylvania, Romania. He began his musical journey at age 4 . During his time in elementary school he started playing piano and acoustic & classical guitar at the age of 9. As a teenager he was gifted several cassette tapes featuring what later would become his favorite guitar artists. One of them featured Christopher Parkening playing works by Bach and the other Joe Pass & Barney Kessel with Ella Fitzgerald. Since then his commitment to studying these two music styles, classical and improvisation, has been uncompromising, resulting in the opportunity to meet and study with some of the best artists in his home country and later on abroad.
While a student at both, The National University of Music Bucharest and The National University of Arts in Bucharest, Gabriel was approached by one of his teachers, Marius Pop, to perform at several local music venues. This opportunity allowed Gabriel to meet, study, and perform with several of the best Romanian jazz musicians: Sorin Romanescu, Tudy Zaharescu and Pedro Negrescu. At age 18 he was asked to record at the National Radio-Television studios, (T8) with his music mentor, Marius Pop. The following year, Gabriel was invited by Marin Pecheas’ Big Band, a jazz orchestra, to go on a two week tour across Switzerland to perform for government officials.
In 2000, Gabriel was offered the chance to study and settle in the U.S. He arrived in the Chicagoland area, as he was awarded a musical scholarship to DePaul University where he studied with Bob Galmieri, jazz guitar instructor, and at Northern Illinois University where he was taught by Fareed Haque, professor of jazz and classical guitar. By attending several music workshops he had the opportunity to study with Pat Metheny and John Scofield, which became two of his stylistic major influences. In addition, Pat Metheny Group's bassist, Steve Rodby, helped him advance to playing elements of improvisations. Gabriel also studied at the Bloom School of Jazz where he learned the subtleties of improvisation with mentor David Bloom, and performed at several Chicago's jazz stages, such as Green Mill and Jazz Showcase, as part of the school's curriculum.
Gabriel has been actively providing live entertainment as a solo guitarist, or with ensembles, locally and nationally for over 20 years, becoming a versatile guitarist. He improvises styles of Classical, Jazz, Latin, Funk, R&B, Motown, Acoustic Rock to current top hits. Some of the past and current performing venues include: Ferrari, Grant Park, Jazz Showcase, City Winery, Shedd Aquarium, Willis-Sears Tower's Metropolitan Club, The Peninsula Hotel, Chicago Theatre, Marubeni-Citizen, Morgan-Chase, BP Amoco, Lake County Bar Foundation, Bank of America, Hampton by Hilton (Florida), and C.D. Peacock. He is continuously growing on this musical journey and enjoys every minute of it.