A look inside The Jazz Gallery

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The New York Times says of Edward Simon: “Mr. Simon’s touch, light and warm, allows for his music to drift calmly, taking its time to get to where it has to go.”

A longtime bandleader, Edward has ten critically-acclaimed recordings under his own name, two of which have been recognized on The New York Times lists for the Top Ten Jazz Albums of the Year. He is a past recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship, the MacDowell Fellowship, and The New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Music Composition, as well as further honors from the Fulbright Program, the State of Florida, Chamber Music America, and several others.  The pianist is also highly sought-after as a sideperson, and has performed internationally for over two decades, most recently with collaborators such as Don ByronMiguel ZenonLuciana SouzaPaquito D’RiveraJohn Patitucci, and the SFJazz Collective.

A native of Cardón, Venezuela, Edward was first encouraged by his father to pursue his interest in music. At 15, he enrolled in the Philadelphia Performing Arts School, and completed his undergraduate studies at the University of the Arts and the Manhattan School of Music. His arrival in New York was noticed by several prominent artists, including Greg Osby, Jerry Gonzalez, Bobby Hutcherson, Herbie Mann, Kevin Eubanks and Paquito D’Rivera, all of whom included the young pianist in their own projects. Edward found longer term employment in Bobby Watson‘s Horizon band, in which he performed from 1989-1994, and later joined Terence Blanchard‘s group from 1994-2002. In 1993, Edward placed third in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition.

We’ve been presenting Edward’s ensembles for most of our history as an organization, and we look forward to his return to The Gallery this Friday night. The performance will feature his quartet, which includes the saxophonist David Binney, the bassist Joe Martin, and the drummer Henry Cole, as well as the guitarist (and longtime collaborator) Adam Rogers as a special guest.

Watch a performance of Edward’s composition, “Pere,” featuring the drummer Brian Blade and the bassist John Patitucci.