Uriel Herman Biography

Jazz pianist and composer, Uriel Herman has been performing worldwide – with his quartet and as a soloist – over the past 5 years. His sound draws form his classical piano upbringing with a mastery of complex middle eastern rhythms and melodies.

“Many musicians can create the obvious. Only few can make every gesture, every note, every moment and every choice not only brilliant, but as if it were the only possibility. Tonight, Uriel Herman’s quartet smashed the gigantic door behind Brian Blade and his brothers and sisters of the obvious.”  Alexandre Fournet (France)

In January 2019 Uriel released his most recent title, “Face to Face” with prominent French label, Laborie Jazz. The album is composed of Uriel’s original music and unique arrangements to songs by David Bowie and Mordechai Zeira.

“In Face to Face, Herman throws himself into an oriental cauldron and “hears” in a colorful virtuosity. Uriel’s version of Bowie’s The Man who Sold the World is one of the best covers in the history of broadly understood entertainment music!“.  Marcin Puławski (Laboratorium Muzycznych, Poland)

The Uriel Herman Quartet was created following the recording of Uriel’s first album “Awake”. Since then the quartet has been travelling across the world, performing in major festivals and venues. Amongst them, The Forbidden City Concert Hall (Beijing, China),  Festival Jazz Sous Les Pommiers (Coutances, FR), Centro Cultural Kirchner (Argentina), Stanford University (CA, USA), Jarasum Jazz Festival (South-Korea), Taichung Jazz Festival (Taiwan), Festival Eclats d’Email Jazz (Limoges, FR), Duc de Lombards (Paris, FR), Red Sea Jazz Festival (Eilat, Israel) and many more.

“This singular and modern approach to music, reinforced by the passion and dexterity of the musicians who accompany it, makes Uriel Herman one of the most exciting pianists in the Jazz scene today and a unavoidable discovery.“ France Musique

In the beginning of 2017 Uriel compose a rhapsody for Jazz Quartet & Orchestra: White Night. This piece is the end product of a long journey Herman started in the jungles of Costa Rica as he underwent a shamanic ceremony with his father. For Herman, this was a life changing moment, sending him into a deep writing and composing process which led to this 21 minute Rhapsody.

Classical music and classical playing are still very close to my heart, but what was missing was the freedom, the freedom to break free from the form, the freedom to improvise, to express…Those spaces that interest me on the stage are the musical domains where you have no idea what it will sound like. Music is the art of time…It takes place within time…It must change and be dynamic,” declares Herman.

In mid-2015 the quartet recorded a live session in the Montefiore Windmill in Jerusalem in front of a small audience of friends and family. “The Windmill Sessions” led the quartet to a international recognition, followed by headline spots on major jazz festivals in Asia, Europe and the US.

In 2014, Uriel released his first solo album Awake which led to the creation of The Uriel Herman Quartet and was named one of Israels’ Top 5 albums of the year. The album contains original compositions, arrangements to songs by Nirvana and Radiohead, as well as new melodies set to poems by Israeli poets, Yehuda Amichai and Tirza Attar.

“The pianist-leader brought a classical touch and mastery of complex rhythms to an exhilarating programme of ‘Bach-to-Brazil’ ” Bob Weiri (Jazzjournal UK)

 “Smells Like Teen Spirit has never sounded more oriental. A true masterpiece!” Marcin Pulawski (Laboratorium Muzycznych Fuzji)

In Fall 2008, in collaboration with double bass player Ehud Ettun, the album  “Half colors, Half Voices” was released. The album is comprised from compositions for poems written by legendary Israeli poet Rachel Blubstein. The album immediately received rave reviews from leading Israeli music critics.

An explosion of magnitude 8 on the Rechter-Kanner or Wirtzburg-Gelbatz scale.”

(Ben Shalev, Haaretz)

Half Colors, Half Voicesis an impressive presentation from musicians who are two of the greatest talents developing in our midst. Pay attention to them!

(Avi Efrati: Yediot)

Herman is a graduate of the Jerusalem Music Academy and studied composition under composers Prof. Andre Hajdu and Prof. Michael Wolpe. He also studied piano with the internationally renowned pianist Ilana Vered as well as with Prof. Assaf Zohar. He has played in classical music recitals as a solo pianist at the Perugia Music Festival in Italy and the Moulin d’AndéFestival in France, among others.

“Many musicians can create the obvious. Only few can make every gesture, every note, every moment and every choice not only brilliant, but as if it were the only possibility. Tonight, Uriel Herman’s quartet smashed the gigantic door behind Brian Blade and his brothers and sisters of the obvious.”

Alexandre Fournet (France)