This week didn’t start out so great. Unfortunately, we received an email from Jeff Zampillo (guitars, above left) early yesterday morning with a statement saying that he has left Exotic Animal Petting Zoo. Needless to say, many sads were had. But, on the bright side, he will continue to make music and will be putting out an album in late Spring 2013. It’s a shame that he left, but hopefully both parties can turn this around and continue to do what they love. Here’s the full statement:

To Whom It May Concern,

This acts as a statement of my formal resignation as the lead guitar player of Exotic Animal Petting Zoo. Within the past two years I have experienced nothing but surreal, lucid moments with them. Unfortunately, these moments are few and far between and offer nothing more than a tale and experience that I am certain will be spun times over.

There are numerous reasons that led me too the decision to leave the group. The primary reason involves my unhappiness touring and performing with them. Playing improvised music and interacting with musicians spontaneously is where the true nature of my spirit resides and every night I played with Exotic I struggled playing the same group of six or eight songs, which admittedly is a discipline I do not posses.

My plans for the future include the recording of an album featuring eight original modern compositions. The group is called The Pneumatic Transit and will feature Mike Mirro (the original drummer of Umphreys Mcgee), a pair of string players from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and a handful of very talented improvisers. Tracking for the record will begin at the start of the new year and its scheduled release is late Spring 2013. It is here that I find music exciting and stimulating because I will be working with musicians that I can again learn from. I have learned all that I can from Exotic Animal Petting Zoo and I sincerely say thank you for a wonderful experience.


Jeffery Zampillo



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