Since moving to the United States in 1995, Eri Yamamoto has established herself as one of jazz's most original and compelling pianists and composers. Jazz legend Herbie Hancock has said, gMy hatfs off to herc already shefs found her own voice.h
The Eri Yamamoto Trio has developed a unique sound and repertoire, and has built a strong following in New York and abroad. They have recently toured the U. S., Canada, Europe, and Japan, with appearances at major festivals in Jazz en Raffale, Canada; Cheltenham, England; Terrassa, Spain; Bray/Derry, Ireland; Time Zones in Bari, Italy; and Shiga, Japan. Eri has also been collaborating with such creative and celebrated musicians as William Parker, Daniel Carter, Hamid Drake, Federico Ughi, and Yves LeLveilleL.
In 2009, Eri composed trio music to accompany the 1932 silent film by the master director, Yasujiro Ozu, I Was Born Butc This music was premiered in a festival in Munich, Germany, and five of the songs appear on her CD, In Each Day, Something Good.
In 2012 release, her latest trio CD, The Next Page on AUM Fidelity Label is her eighth CD as a leader. Her ten new compositions evoke a wide range of images and moods, inspired by moments of grace in her daily life, and her encounters of natural beauty at home and throughout her travels.
Eri has also developed a personal voice as a solo pianist, and has moved audiences with her renditions of her own compositions and her spontaneous improvisations.In 2008, she gave a nine-concert solo tour of Italy to popular and critical acclaim. She has also given solo concerts in Japan and the United States.
Since 2009, Eri has had a special collaboration with French-Canadian pianist Yves LeLveilleL, performing at several concerts and clubs throughout Canada. In 2010, they released a CD, Pianos, that features 10 of their original compositions in duo and solo settings. They added multi-reed virtuoso Paul McCandless to their ensemble, and recently toured Canada, where they deeply moved audiences with their lyrical and compelling music.
Eri was born in Osaka, Japan, and began playing classical piano at age three. She started composing when only eight years old, and studied voice, viola, and composition through her high school and college years. In 1995, she visited New York for the first time, and by chance heard Tommy Flanagan performing. She was so inspired by her first experience of a jazz piano trio that she decided on the spot to move to New York and dedicate herself to learning jazz.
Later that year, Eri entered the New School University's prestigious jazz program, where she studied with Reggie Workman, Junior Mance, and LeeAnn Ledgerwood. In 1999, while still in school, she started playing regularly at the Avenue B Social Club, a popular spot among jazz musicians in the East Village. There she developed a musical friendship with fellow pianist Matthew Shipp.
Since 2000, Eri's trio has been appearing regularly at Arthur's Tavern, a historic jazz club in New York's Greenwich Village. In addition to her European performances, she has performed at the Hartford International Jazz Festival, An Die Musik in Baltimore, and Lincoln Center Summer Festival in New York City.
Eri has appeared on two William Parker recordings, Luc' s Lantern and Corn Meal Dance, and has performed in Italy, Holland, Norway, Tunisia and Portugal with his trio and sextet. She has also worked with such musical luminaries as Ron McClure, Andy McKee, Lewis Barns, Rob Brown, Leena Conquest, Butch Morris, Arthur Kell, Kevin Tkacs, and Whit Dickey.
Finally, Eri is a gifted educator. She received her master of music in education and composition from Shiga University, Japan. She has taught private lessons and workshops to jazz musicians of all instruments from the U. S., Japan, Europe, and North Africa.
gMy hatfs off to her. Shefs found her own voice.h
__Herbie Hancock, pianist
gYamamotofs playing, unhurried and unforced, demonstrates an
active imagination and gift for melody; her improvisations favor
focused introspection, in the spirit of someone who stops along the way to
pore over the small details of everyday life that often elude those who
hurry on.h __New York City Jazz Record, Tom Greenland
gYamamoto has a lovely touch and an active musical imagination ..
each piece shines with its own interior light."h
__BBC.com, Bill Tilland
gOne would think that the piano trio format would have played out
its creative potential long ago, but there's not a clicheL to be found within
a hundred miles of this lovely recording. .. highly recommended.h
__Other Music, Michael Klausman
gEri Yamamotofs pianism is quietly dignified and her approach to
music making exudes introspection and beauty. Each note seems sculpted
out of the silence surrounding it.h
__New York City Jazz Record, Marc Medwin
gEri Yamamoto's contemporary jazz style has not only come of age, but
has fully blossomed. This trio recording shows Yamamoto's fluid
melodic elements, sprawling vistas of color, and her innate common sense
in stringing together lines of passion. While remaining in a modern vein,
her piano style reflects classical training, post-bop sensibilities,
and progressive ideals.h__All Music Guide, Michael G. Nastos
gWith its unexpected mix of Paul Bley and Mose Allison, pianist Eri
Yamamoto's aesthetic encompasses the exotic, the abstractly lyrical,
and the funky. Yamamoto doesn't try to dazzle with technique. Instead,
she deliberately keeps things simple, clear and to the point,
thereby achieving an earthy eloquence.h__Exclaim, Glen Hall
gAnother fresh and intriguing musical statement from one of the
busiest and most original jazz composers and improvisers on the scene
today.h __The Epoch Times, Joe Bendel
gShe uses her knowledge of traditional [classical] structure as the
foundation for jazz investigations that are simultaneously studied
and swinging.h __Jazziz, Michael Roberts
gEverything, even the flourishes, seems tempered in the pianist's trio. But
rather than muting the emotions at hand, it gives the music a sort
of wisdom that explains the power of a judicious approach.h
__Village Voice, Jim Macnie