Dividing his childhood between New York, New Jersey, Australia, Brazil, Canada and the Netherlands, Casey’s early exposure to so many diverse cultures fostered his rich appreciation of musical traditions from across the globe. Casey’s musical education began at age eight in New York City where he studied jazz piano, but it was in the Netherlands as a teenager where he apprenticed with blues guitarist, Willem van Dulleman, and blues harmonica great, Carlo Reijs. Under Willem and Carlo’s guidance, Casey immersed himself in traditional blues performance, providing Casey with the vocabulary that would shape the musical landscape he utilizes in his music today.
Casey's unique jazz, "world" and blues-inspired taste has influenced his original compositions and arrangements for Turbo Street Funk. In 2013, Casey completed his BFA Hon. in Jazz Bass Performance from York University.
In 2011, Casey co-founded Turbo Street Funk with fellow York University music students Daniel Walsh, Trix Sharma and Juan Manuel Arce and were soon joined by Camilo Gallon and Joel Eric Szabo. The group started as a professional busking band, performing on the streets of Toronto four days a week each spring and summer while members of the band attended university. The band received high praise from local journalists for their fresh sound and popularity with Toronto audiences:
“Turbo Street Funk takes Toronto busking to a new level” - BlogTO
“…Turbo Street Funk have become a fixture on Toronto’s sidewalks.
They gather crowds wherever they go” - Torontoist
The band quickly drew the attention of Canadian jazz legend, Richard Underhill, who introduced them to fellow “Shuffle Demon” and music producer, George Koller. With George at the helm, Turbo Street Funk released their debut album, To The Street, in May 2014 at Toronto’s Horseshoe Tavern. Tracks from the album have been featured on JAZZ.FM91, CBC radio and campus/community radio shows across Ontario. The album features unique artwork and design from JUNO Award Winning graphic artist, Michael Wrycraft.
Since To The Street's release, Turbo Street Funk has grown from a street savvy busking crew to a collection of dynamic showmen, performing at events and festivals across Ontario including the Mariposa Folk Festival, Summerfolk, Beaches International Jazz Festival, JAZZ.FM91's Jazz Lives, PANAM Supercrawl in Hamilton, Toronto International BuskerFest, Aurora Winter Blues Festival, Winterfolk Blues & Roots Festival, Cultura Festival, and many more.
"You haven’t lived until you hear Turbo Street Funk do The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald."
– Orillia Packet & Times
In 2016, Turbo Street Funk release their second album, Momentum, receiving both national and international radio play as well as being nominated for two Toronto Independent Music Awards.
Casey Van later met producer Jonathan Hirsch and directors Sean Ahmed and Scott Lever, who asked him to compose an original soundtrack for their new Bell TV show, Fare Trade. The soundtrack was then produced and performed by Casey and Turbo Street Funk.
When not performing with Turbo Street Funk, Casey manages and promotes the band full time.