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  • ¬† Hiromi (2012)

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    (Photo by Sakiko Nomura)

    Pianist and composer Hironi was born in 1979 in Shizuoka, Japan, and began piano lessons at age six. Within a year, she was a student in the Yamaha Music School Program, albeit more for composing (even at only age seven!) than for playing.

    At age 14, Hiromi performed with the Czech Philharmonic, and it was at that same age that she made her initial contact with the first of three great jazz pianists who have influenced and befriended her. A friend at Yamaha Japan knew Oscar Peterson, and sent him a tape of Hiromi playing. Oscar wrote back "a really generous letter encouraging [her] to keep going". She keeps that letter to this day.

    Three years later, a lucky coincidence gave Hiromi the opportunity to play for Chick Corea in Tokyo. (It's indicative of her early independence that she chose to play for him one of her own compositions rather than a jazz standard.) So impressed was he that he invited her to perform with him the following evening. This was only the first of many times they were to play together, most recently for the recording "Duet".

    Hiromi attended law school for two years, although with no intention to study law, but rather to gain experience. As she puts it, "music doesn't come from music; music comes from experience". It was always her intention to be a pianist, and she moved the United States in 1999 on a full scholarship to the Berklee School of Music in Boston.

    While at Berklee, she met Oscar Peterson for the first time when she visited his home just outside Toronto, and speaks of playing his Bösendorfer while Oscar looked on. She also had the opportunity to play again with Chick Corea, and also with her mentor Ahmad Jamal, who was to produce her first recording, "Another Mind" in 2003.

    Hiromi is a passionate and fluid composer with strong athleticism in her playing, and she can, and does, reference everything from J.S. Bach to Frank Zappa.
    Pick Artist Album Song Label
    # 1 Erroll Garner Concert by the Sea It's All Right with Me Columbia
    # 2 Glenn Gould Goldberg Variations Variation No. 1 Sony
    # 3 Frank Zappa Roxy & Elsewhere Don't You Ever Wash That Thing? Rykodisc
    # 4 Ahmad Jamal After Fajr Topsy Turvey Dreyfus
    # 5 Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglovà Once: Music from the Motion Picture Falling Slowly Canvasback
    # 6 Jeff Beck Wired Led Boots Epic
    # 7 Michael Jackson Smooth Criminal Smooth Criminal Epic
    # 8 Oscar Peterson Night Train Night Train Verve
    Book Haruki Murakami,"I Talked with Mr Seiji Ozawa about Music"
    Luxury Item A video camera
    Castaways by date
    Chris Amberger
    23 Jun
    Gerald Beckett
    01 Sep
    Buzz Brooks
    28 Apr
    Jarrett Cherner
    16 Jun
    Kev Choice
    30 Jun
    Anat Cohen
    28 Jul
    Natalie Cressman
    10 Feb
    Hershey Felder
    07 Apr
    Mitchell Feldman
    18 Aug
    Mike Galisatus
    03 Nov
    Aaron Germain
    06 Jan
    Robin Gregory
    17 Feb
    Tamir Hendelman
    13 Oct
    Kasey Knudsen
    17 Mar
    Matthew Montfort
    26 May
    Dan Montgomery
    06 Oct
    Andrea Motis
    21 Jul
    Ray Obiedo
    10 Mar
    Jayn Pettingill
    17 Nov
    John Pizzarelli
    25 Aug
    Sandi Poindexter
    24 Mar
    Don Randi
    20 Oct
    David Rogers
    24 Feb
    Eric Whittington
    29 Sep
    George Winston
    04 Aug
    Lizz Wright
    09 Jun
    Jason Yeager
    02 Jun