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Welcome to the website of award-winning New York City jazz pianist and accordionist Ben Rosenblum. Click on the button below to view a full schedule, scroll down to the blog to find new updates and information, or learn more about Ben's albums as a leader, including Instead, River City and Kites and Strings.
Hi everyone! It's been a little while since I've posted, but I hope everything has been going all right for all of you. We were incredibly fortunate recently that we got to go on a tour for the first time in a year. One of our shows at Timucua Arts Foundation was recorded and filmed, and I've shared my favorite songs on my YouTube channel. You can see all five videos in the players below. Timucua is an incredible place, and we definitely hope to be back soon! If you want to support them, visit this link and scroll down to the bottom of the page for the donate button. These videos featured two of my absolute favorite musicians - the amazing Eduardo Belo on bass and Ben Zweig on drums. I'm playing piano on most of them, but I switch to the accordion for Jacob do Bandolim's classic choro, Receita de Samba.
I'm so happy to announce that my third album as a leader, Kites and Strings, is set to be released on October 16! This album is the debut of my new sextet, the Nebula Project, and features mostly original compositions (with a few eclectic arrangements thrown in - Neil Young, Leonard Bernstein and a Bulgarian traditional song). It is also the first album where you can hear me playing both piano and accordion! Listen and learn more about the album here, or continue reading below for some videos and personal thoughts.
The journey of this album is a long one - it started ten years ago in my last year of high school, when I completed the first larger ensemble version of one of the tracks on the album, Bright Above Us, and it includes compositions, arrangements and re-arrangements written across this whole span of time. It is an album that merges my deep love of both jazz and world music styles, and features many of my favorite musicians in New York City. This includes my long-time regular touring trio with Marty Jaffe on bass and Ben Zweig on drums, as well as the incredible Wayne Tucker on trumpet, Jasper Dutz on sax and bass clarinet and Rafael Rosa on guitar. It also features special guest appearances by Jake Chapman on vibraphone, Sam Chess on trombone and fellow pianist Jeremy Corren performing on two of the tracks that I play accordion on. Watching these musicians bring my music to life was such a special experience - after so many years waiting to record these compositions, I felt that I could finally express them in the way I imagined them. Since then, I've been working with my brother Dev Avidon who recorded, mixed and mastered the whole project so incredibly beautifully and guided it through the entire process to completion, and my mom who took the gorgeous cover and back photos and imagined the art for the whole project. I'm really proud of the work that went into this album, and I hope you'll all have a chance to listen to it soon!
If you want to hear a preview of the album, click on the link above. I'm also including four Youtube videos taken by Kevin Jiang at our most recent live performance at the Kitano. These videos feature many of the musicians that are on the album and two of the songs (Somewhere and Laughing on the Inside) that are on the album. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported this project and I can't wait to share this music with all of you live.
So much has happened since my last blog post. Scrolling back through my pictures has brought up so many wonderful memories, whether traveling overseas or performing here in New York City. It is a particularly uncertain time right now. Sadly my tour with Gabriela Martina in Switzerland had to be postponed due to the current pandemic, and it is unclear when live performances will resume. But at the very least, being in self-isolation gives me time to share a little bit about all the positive experiences I've had recently, and look forward to many things to come once the virus is past. Best wishes to everyone reading this to stay safe and healthy!
I have continued a full touring schedule with my trio. In addition to tours in the West Coast (June), Midwest (August and February) and Canada (October), we did our longest tour yet this past January and February, when we spent three and a half weeks touring in the Southern US. There were so many incredible highlights from this trip, including a TV appearance in Jacksonville on the Morning Show at News4Jax (pictured above) and over twenty shows and three educational appearances throughout the area. The picture below is from our appearance in Orlando, where we also got to work with students at UCF - thanks so much Sandy for the beautiful pictures from this performance!
I have also continued to work as a sideman with Curtis Lundy, Astrid Kuljanic, Gabriela Martina, Pat Bartley (whose YouTube channel J-Music Ensemble is starting to gain some significant publicity - I'm in the playlist linked, which features our acoustic renditions of video game music) and many others, and my travels have taken me to so many beautiful places around the world. Over the summer, I spent three weeks in Croatia, Italy and Switzerland (the last of which I got to perform in as a leader with some wonderful local musicians). While I was there I also took some time off to compose new material for the trio and the sextet, some of which we have been able to debut in our recent performances. I also had the unique and amazing experience of subbing on accordion for the Off-Broadway production of Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish, doing twenty performances between October to December. Below are some pictures - the Colosseum in Pula, the church overlooking Lake Geneva, backstage at Fiddler, a performance with bagpipe in Cres, hiking in Quebec at Lake Gatineau, performing with Curtis Lundy in New Jersey, and finally at home in NYC, both at the Black Cat LES with Pat Barley and at Smalls.
I can't wait to share some music with all of you once the self-isolation is over and live music begins again. Until then, stay well and I look forward to seeing you soon. All the best!
It's been a little while since I posted anything. This year has been filled with a number of incredibly special experiences and adventures, and I've been meaning to put together a quick post with some pictures and highlights. So far in 2019, here's what has happened:
I'm so lucky to be able to travel the world with some of my favorite musicians and closest friends, and to have met so many supporters of the music whom I have befriended throughout my tours. These people mean so much to be and make playing and performing on the road so worthwhile. I can't wait to see you all again soon. Thanks so much to all of you, and see you all in the second half of 2019!
Hi everyone! I just got back from a wonderful tour of Quebec and Ontario in Canada, during which we playing eight shows across five cities. While on tour, I was very excited to see a number of great articles promoting the band and our music, including this beautiful feature by Peter Hum for the Ottawa Citizen. A huge thanks to Peter and everyone else who wrote about us and helped generate buzz for the tour. Below are some links to read articles about the band, in three different languages!
Tour Preview - Ottawa Citizen (Peter Hum)
Quebec Preview - Le Soleil (Josianne Desloges) - French
Peterborough Preview - MyKawartha (Lance Anderson)
Toronto Review - Spill Magazine (Conrad Gayle)
Toronto Review - Miki Ando Life (Miki Ando) - Japanese
Toronto Review - Blast Magazine (Jojo Aderson)
While I was in Canada, this great interview I did with WNUR's Geoff Fenton went live as well. We talk about the new album, River City, as well as my career this far and my plans for the future. Check it out! Geoff's daughter Sara did all the editing, and I'm so happy with how it came out.
River City Interview - WNUR (Geoff Fenton)
Midwest Tour: Chicago, South Bend, Detroit and Lansing!
To celebrate the launch of my second album, River City, I will be doing a number of tours with my trio over the next six months. The first tour on the schedule is a return trip to the Midwest from October 12th-16th. This tour will feature appearances at some of our favorite venues from the previous tour: Merriman's in South Bend, Cliff Bell's in Detroit and Moriarty's in Lansing. I am also particularly excited to be debuting at an incredible performing arts center in the Chicago area called Ravinia. On October 13th at 8:30pm, we will be performing at Ravinia's beautiful Bennett Gordon Hall. On the afternoon leading up to this, I will also be doing a special solo accordion performance of material from Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake as part of a plaque dedication at the Legacy Walk in Chicago. This tour promises to be an incredible time, and I can't wait to see all my friends in the area! Click on any of the links above to see more info about each performance.
Thanks to the incredible Deborah Davis, I had the opportunity to visit and perform in Beijing, China to round out a wonderful and busy summer. We played at the beautiful Blue Note Beijing for two nights, and we also had a few days to explore the city together as a band, and travel to a section of the Great Wall. I feel so fortunate that I got to experience this magical culture for the first time, and I'm already excited to go back. Thanks for everything, Beijing!
Hi everyone! Hope the summer is going well. I just returned from a three week tour of Europe with Astrid Kuljanic's Transatlantic Exploration Company, where we traveled across Croatia, Italy, Serbia and Slovenia. Before that, in June, I was with my trio on a extensive West Coast tour that began in the islands of Northern Washington and took us all the way down to Los Angeles. It's been a crazy summer full of magical experiences, and I wanted to share some pictures from the past two months of touring now that I am back in New York City for a few weeks. For those of you in New York City, I have some exciting shows coming up, including an appearance with my trio at the Kitano on August 8th. Hope to see you there!
A huge shoutout to all of the incredible photographers who sent me their photos throughout our trips: Francesco Moretti (first, seventh and last), Mike Stempe (second and third), Silvio Selman (fourth and fifth) and everyone else!
I just returned from Japan a week ago, and I'm still overwhelmed by how incredible our trip was. Visiting Japan has always been a dream for me, but to do so with my trio and perform in eight cities all over the country was nothing short of magical. I experienced some of the most amazing food and hospitality of my life in this twelve day journey, and I had the pleasure of meeting a multitude of fantastic musicians and music lovers, all of whom I hope to see again whenever we next have the opportunity to perform in Japan.
I wanted to share some pictures from the trip so that all of you could share a part of this experience with me. Below are some pictures that I took along the way, as well as some great photos taken by Kazuo Goshima (first one), Shin Yamazaki (fourth and sixth) and Mitsuru Mendenhall. These photos feature my wonderful bandmates Kanoa Mendenhall (bass) and Ben Zweig (drums), as well as our extraordinary special guest in Yokohama, Watanabe Yuko-sensei (koto), and a host of musicians who sat in with us at Koji Matsuura's awesome jazz club in Sapporo, D-Bop (third photo). A huge thanks to all of the venues that hosted us and all of the people that made this trip possible. We hope to be back very soon!
Hi everyone! Just got back to New York City and had an absolute blast on the road. We met so many new friends and music fans on the road, and we're incredibly excited to go back this Fall. Here are some pictures from the tour! A special thanks to Daniel Tremblay for the black and white photos.
(For a complete list of upcoming gigs, click here. To sign up for my mailing list, click here).
Saturday, July 24th at 8:30pm
Kiran Ahluwalia at the Grassroots Festival (Trumansburg, NY). More info here.
Sunday, July 25th at 3pm
Kiran Ahluwalia at Cafe Lena (Saratoga Springs, NY). More info.
Sunday, August 1st at 5-9pm:
Oxente Trio at Joey Bats (Manhattan: East Village)
Saturday, August 7th at 10am:
Summer Streets NYC with Blue Dahlia (Manhattan - exact location TBA)
Sunday, August 8th at 5-9pm:
Oxente Trio at Joey Bats (Manhattan: East Village)
Sunday, August 15th at 5-9pm:
Oxente Trio at Joey Bats (Manhattan: East Village)
Sunday, August 22nd (Time: TBA)
Jasper Dutz Duo at the Little Island Jazz Fest (Manhattan: Pier 55)
Described as an "impressive talent" by All About Jazz, Ben Rosenblum is a jazz pianist, accordionist and composer based in New York City, and a recent graduate of the joint program between Columbia University and Juilliard School of Music. His work has garnered numerous awards, including the ASCAP Young Jazz Composers Award and two Downbeat Student Music Awards for composition and arrangement. Ben was a finalist at the 2015 American Jazz Pianist Competition in Melbourne, Florida, and at the 2016 Jacksonville Jazz Piano Competition in Jacksonville, Florida. He has played with the Bachiana Brasileira Orchestra at Lincoln Center (conducted by Joao Carlos Martins and featuring Dave Brubeck), as well as in Delhi, India, and at the Masten Jazz Festival (Buffalo), Richmond Jazz Festival (Richmond), Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival (Maryland) and Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival (Manhattan). He has also performed at Carnegie Hall, Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, the Allen Room at Lincoln Center, Ryles Jazz Club, Webster Hall, Symphony Space, The Blue Note and a host of other locations throughout the northeast. Ben has worked extensively with such jazz luminaries as Curtis Lundy, Neal Smith, Winard Harper, Wayne Escoffery and Deborah Davis, and he has shared the stage with Houston Person, Dave Stryker, Steve Nelson, TS Monk and many others. Ben is currently celebrating the release of his debut album, entitled Instead. The album has been released to critical acclaim, including 4 stars from Downbeat Magazine.