Ari Hoenig

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Ari Hoenig
Ari Hoenig at Moers Festival, June 2006, Germany
Background information
Born (1973-11-13) November 13, 1973 (age 40)
Origin Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Genres Jazz
Occupations Drummer, Composer
Instruments Drums
Years active 2000–present
Labels Dreyfus
Associated acts One O'Clock Lab Band [(Punk Bop Band)]

Ari Hoenig (born November 13, 1973) is an American jazz drummer, composer and educator known for his unusual and intense approach to drumming emphasizing complex rhythms. He currently leads a group that makes regular appearances in New York jazz clubs including the 55 Bar, the Blue Note and especially Smalls in NYC's Greenwich Village where his band has been performing on Monday nights for several years in addition to performing worldwide. Joining Ari on many recordings is the noted French pianist Jean-Michel Pilc, who performs on two of the drummers solo albums the live The Painter and the studio recording Inversations.

Rather than playing the traditional role of timekeeper, Ari is known to elevate his drumming to a very central and visible part of the performance, as many drummers such as Elvin Jones, Tony Williams and Jack DeJohnette did before him. He's also known for playing with the intensity usually associated with the playing of rock & metal drummers as well as combining rhythms from many styles of music with the more traditional jazz drumming style to make a highly personalized & expressive voice at the drums.


Hoenig was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to a vocalist father and violinist mother, exposed to classical and other music at an early age. He played both piano and violin, then rock and metal drums as a teen before settling into jazz. He attended Pennsylvania Governor's School for the Arts in summer 1990. He attended the University of North Texas College of Music for three years and was a member of the highly regarded One O'Clock Lab Band before relocating to New York. After the move to New York he began playing with fellow Philadelphia native Shirley Scott.

In 2005 Hoenig appeared with his group at the Dominican Republic Jazz Festival alongside such jazz luminaries as Gonzalo Rubalcaba and Chucho Valdés.

Since 2005 Ari has appeared with many of jazz's finest up & coming guitarists such as Jonathan Kreisberg who's a member of Ari's Punk Bop Band and Israeli transplant Gilad Hekselman


Other artists Hoenig has recorded with include Mike Stern, Kenny Werner, Richard Bona, Dave Liebman, Chris Potter, Joshua Redman, Tigran Hamasyan, Ethan Iverson, Mark Turner, Fred Hersch, and the Jazz Mandolin Project. According to his website, Ari has also played on stage with Kurt Rosenwinkel, Joshua Redman, Pat Martino, Wynton Marsalis, Pat Metheney, Dekel Bor, Mike Stern, Jonathan Kreisberg and Gilad Hekselman.


Hoenig's playing has been cited by diverse publications worldwide including the Los Angeles Times, Jazz Times, and The Jerusalem Post.

Discography as leader[edit]

  • Jazzheads (1999)
  • Time Travels (2000)
  • The Life of a Day (2002)
  • The Painter (2004)
  • Kinectic Hues (2005) (DVD Video)
  • Inversations (2007)
  • Bert's Playground (2008)
  • Punkbop (2010)
  • Lines of Oppression (2011)


External links[edit]