Uriel Herman’s New Album “Different Eyes” and Ronnie Scott’s Debut

jazz music

Uriel Herman

Israeli pianist Uriel Herman is set to make his UK live debut soon with the release of his new album, “Different Eyes.” Herman’s unique jazz vision finds room for various musical influences, ranging from Bowie to Mozart, and has garnered a following across continents.

An Eclectic Mix of Influences

Album Cover

Uriel Herman’s albums often feature an eclectic mix of musical influences. In “Different Eyes,” Frederic Chopin and Kurt Cobain sit side by side, with the pianist’s imagination drawing inspiration from Antonio Carlos Jobim, a Hebrew lullaby, and an elegant take on “Nature Boy.”

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Instead of confining jazz to the Great American Songbook and Satchmo, Uriel Herman’s “Different Eyes” reflects a wider vision, incorporating Middle Eastern textures, rock, and classical music. The Uriel Herman Quartet’s sound is warm-blooded and melodic, featuring moments of daring and abundant space for spontaneity. The quartet’s ten years of live performance have led to success in Asia, Brazil, and Europe, with a UK debut at Ronnie Scott’s in September, followed by gigs in Lithuania, Poland, and a major Brazilian tour.

From the Jerusalem Music Academy to Worldwide Success

Herman’s diverse approach is a reflection of his time at the Jerusalem Music Academy. He was considered an odd figure in the classical world because of his penchant for improvisation. His composition teacher, however, encouraged him to become part of the piece. Uriel laments the loss of improvisation in the classical tradition, stating that it has become more of a museum sound.

Early on, rock music played a significant role in Uriel’s life, with artists such as Jimi Hendrix and Radiohead influencing him greatly. These influences can be heard in his version of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and his refashioning of David Bowie’s “The Man Who Sold the World.”

Uriel Herman Performing

Traveling from his Tel Aviv home, Uriel regularly finds new inspirations, such as Turkish music and the project in Spain, which led him to explore flamenco. He believes that music is a language, and he continually tries to expand his vocabulary.

The Making of “Different Eyes”

Different Eyes Album

For Uriel, creating an album is different from his commission work. “Different Eyes” was a journey of the heart. Upon completion, he realized it was, in a way, about his own childhood. The opening track, a tender duet with trumpeter Itamar Borochov called “Jerusalem,” is about the city where Uriel and his wife grew up. The album’s tracklist features virtuoso turns, such as “MJ,” which celebrates basketball legend Michael Jordan, and ends with “Yakinton,” a melodic take on an ancient tune dedicated to his young son.

In concert, the tunes take on a life of their own. Uriel loves the improvisation aspect, with 90% of a good show being improvised. He believes that the reason music is special is that it happens in real time and then disappears.

“Different Eyes” is released by Ubuntu on June 30 and is available from Proper. The quartet will play at Ronnie Scott’s on September 19 with special guest Cuban trumpet star Yelfris Valdes. Book your tickets here.

About Me

I’m Dr. Miles Beaumont from the charming town of York in the UK. I’ve spent over three decades as a medical doctor, helping people and contributing to important research. I graduated from Oxford University, and ever since, I’ve devoted myself to improving the health and lives of others.

When I’m not practicing medicine, you’ll find me soaking up the world of jazz music. It’s been a passion of mine since I turned 30, and I’ve been an active part of York’s jazz scene ever since. Whether it’s going to local gigs, listening to records at home, or just enjoying the rhythmic and improvisational magic of jazz, it’s a big part of who I am.