eri myamamoto : pianist / composer
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Pianist/ Composer

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 her... already shefs found her own voice.h

During the past twenty years, Eri has been sharing her uniquely lyrical and evocative music with listeners in New York City, throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Japan, Jamaica, and Australia; with appearances in concerts, clubs, and major festivals.

She has a deeply empathetic rapport with her long-standing trio members bassist David Ambrosio and drummer Ikuo Takeuchi. Together they have recorded several albums, most recently gLife,h released in 2016. As the album title suggests, the music portrays a wide range of her experiences - from joyful to introspective, reflecting the vibrancy of New York City and exploring mysteries of nature and memory.
Downbeat magazine gave four stars to her previous release, gFirefly,h saying:

gHer CD reaffirms Yamamotofs standing as a contemporary pianist of the highest order. Her virtuosity never gets in the way of playing it straight from the heart.h

Eri has also been dedicated to the art of solo piano, moving audiences with her renditions of her own compositions and her spontaneous improvisations. Her most recent release, gLive in Benicàssim,h captures her 2017 solo piano concert in that picturesque Spanish town.  It is her first solo piano album, and her eleventhrecording under her own name.

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 1997, 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 1998, Eri's trio has been appearing regularly at Arthur's Tavern, a historic jazz club in New York's Greenwich Village.

Eri has also been collaborating with such creative and celebrated musicians as William Parker, Daniel Carter, Hamid Drake, Federico Ughi, Yves Leveille and Paul McCandless. Eri has appeared on several William Parker recordings, and has performed in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Tunisia, and South Africa with his trio and sextet.

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

"4-Stars. Firefly reaffirms Yamamoto's standing as a contemporary pianist of the highest order. While [she] has a deft sense of harmony and note selection, not to mention sheer chops, her virtuosity never gets in the way of playing it straight from the heart.
|Daniel A. Brown, DownBeat

"Yamamotofs insistent rhythmic savvy [is] allied to a deep soulfulness. Bassist David Ambrosio once again demonstrates his keen melodic sensibility and propensity for surefooted commentary, while drummer Ikuo Takeuchi combines invention and drive into one elegant package."
|John Sharpe, The New York City Jazz Record

"[Her] trio has been together almost a decade and has levels of telepathy that are enviable. This is a band that consistently generates a sound of joy without falling back on many jazz clicheLs. Itfs hard to imagine a jazz trio with more magic at its fingertips."
|Will Layman, PopMatters

"There are virtues in Yamamotofs music that are rarely heard elsewhere. One is the depth of rapport with a rhythm section that has gigged with her regularly for over 13 years, making whole a steady stream of new compositions from her prolific muse. Another is Yamamotofs ability to evoke ephemeral feelings and concepts with such precise intonation."
|Britt Robson, JazzTimes

"Eri Yamamoto, who gracefully bridges the worlds of postbop and free jazz, surveys her warm, evocative songs without words in the company of bassist Dave Ambrosio and drummer Ikuo Takeuchi on Firefly, her typically elegant and understated new full-length."
|Time Out New Yorkhhh