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|Born||11 March 1969|
|Origin||Los Angeles, United States|
|Instruments||Keyboards, accordion, harmonica|
Rami Jaffee (born 11 March 1969 in Los Angeles), is best known as the keyboardist of The Wallflowers and work for several bands and artists, including Foo Fighters, Pete Yorn, Soul Asylum, Stone Sour, Joseph Arthur and Coheed and Cambria.
Jaffee bought his first keyboard at age 13. He soon started to play with various local bands while attending Fairfax High School. During his high school years, he often spent time at Canter's Deli, down the street from his high school on Fairfax Avenue. Canter's Deli, or more specifically, The Kibitz Room (a small bar at the back of the deli), proved to be an important influence in Rami's musical career.
Rami briefly attended Santa Monica College after high school, but decided he'd learn more from the continued experience of playing music live. He began making a name for himself in and around Los Angeles as he developed his unique keyboard sound while playing with a number of local bands. Soon Rami was in high demand for studio work.
Around 1989, Jakob Dylan and his friend Tobi Miller formed a group "the Apples." They were looking for a keyboard player. While asking around, Rami Jaffee's name constantly came up, but was initially rejected due to his reputation for not joining groups. Jaffee heard about Dylan's search through a mutual friend, and after listening to their demo tape quickly joined. Rami joined for the need to play music, rather than achieving success.
A few weeks later the Apples had changed their name to the Wallflowers, and played in a number of local clubs. Their performances earned them their first record deal with Virgin Records. In 1992, the Wallflowers released their first self-titled album.
They toured extensively through the U.S. and Canada in 1992 and the Spring of 1993. They opened for bands such as Cracker, the Spin Doctors and 10,000 Maniacs and headlined some shows themselves. When they returned home there was a shakeup at Virgin and they lost the two contacts that had originally been interested in the band's talent. The album wasn't a huge seller and the band soon felt that Virgin had lost interest in them. In addition, Virgin began trying to use the Dylan name to sell records— a tactic the band, and especially Jakob, refused to cater to. Eventually they asked to be let out of their contract. Virgin agreed, and they left in the summer of 1993. Unfortunately, the word got around that the band was "difficult", which led to almost a year of uninterest from the record companies. Rami explains:
- "I was living at home and there was no money for anything. I would try to explain to friends that [getting out of our contract] was a good thing; but the bottom line was that we didn't have a deal anymore. I had a certain faith in playing Jakob's music, though. Somewhere between, 'Oh, this is definitely going to blow up,' and 'I don't care if it ever goes anywhere. I love these songs and I want to play with him.'"
During the dry spell, Rami kept that faith in Jakob and in the Wallflowers. He paid the bills by delivering pizza for Damiano's (across the street from Canter's Deli) and playing with local acts such as El Vez. Although his session appearances were becoming more frequent, and he had some enticing tour opportunities (such as with Lenny Kravitz), Rami had to make some tough decisions. "Jakob was always writing, trying to keep things going. I was always playing and doing sessions [in order to] make ends meet... I kept denying anything that would take me away from Jakob," said Rami (Jewish Exponent, 1998). It was also obvious to Rami that he had something to offer Jakob and the band... and especially the songs. "I believe in these songs and I'm here for the duration, because no one is writing songs like these anymore, songs that have room for a Hammond organ and me."
Rami's dedication stayed strong even in the face of uncertainty with record contracts and band membership. In 1994 the Wallflowers were signed by Interscope Records and they began to work on their second release. Simultaneously, Rami found himself in high demand as a studio musician, working frequently for other artists with producers Paul Fox (who produced the Wallflowers' debut), Matt Hyde, and Rick Neigher. Rami took nothing for granted. As a result, 1996 brought new albums by artists such as Rickie Lee Jones, the Hookers, Tina & the B-side Movement, Leah Andreone, Chalk Farm, and Phil Cody—all bearing the Jaffee name on their liner notes (often misspelled). Also released in 1996 was the Wallflowers' sophomore release, "Bringing Down the Horse," which went on to sell over 5 million copies.
The extensive tour and promotion that followed the release of the album helped them gain recognition. Between 1996 and 1997, the Wallflowers were featured in all of the industry magazines, received abundant radio play, appeared frequently on television, and earned several award nominations. In 1997 Rami's personal life also changed. His first child was born. He left the tour in mid July 1997 on parental leave. Chris Joyner filled in for Rami until he returned in September.
In 1998, the Wallflowers returned to the studio to record "Heroes" for the Godzilla Soundtrack, which earned them another Grammy nomination that year.
After the release of "Bringing Down the Horse," Rami continued his outside studio work, playing with Everclear, Grant Lee Buffalo, Richie Sambora, Macy Gray, Jeremy Toback, Joe Henry, Melissa Etheridge and Garth Brooks.
At the end of 1998, when the Wallflowers tour finally began to slow down, Rami expanded his musical talents and began producing for his friend and former labelmate, Phil Cody. His production credits include Andy If's album "Memories of Connecticut" and the band "the Color Green"'s 5 song EP. Rami formed a production team with fellow Wallflower Greg Richling.
In September 2000, the band set out on the road again in support of "Breach", released 10 October 2000. Highlights of the tour included opening acts like Minibar and John Doe as well as the honor of opening shows for veterans Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and the Who. The Breach tour ended on 09.22.01 in Noblesville, IN— finishing off a set of opening dates for John Mellencamp.
In November 2002, the Wallflowers released their fourth album "Red Letter Days". The band toured extensively in 2002/2003 with some appearances following in 2004, including a concert aboard the U.S.S. Stennis, an aircraft carrier out at sea.
With a new drummer, the band released "Rebel, Sweetheart", their fifth album, on 24 May 2005.
He led the house band on the Fran Drescher Talk Show and, as of 2010, co-owned a recording studio called Fonogenic Studios in the San Fernando Valley.
In 2012 and 2013, Jaffee was a member of the Sound City Players, a supergroup formed by Dave Grohl that, in addition to appearing in Grohl's 2013 documentary, Sound City, played a limited number of tour dates in 2013. The Sound City Players consisted of a rotating number of artists including Grohl, Jaffee, Stevie Nicks, Alain Johannes, Paul McCartney, Rick Springfield, Josh Homme, Trent Reznor, Krist Novoselic, and more.
|1992||The Wallflowers||The Wallflowers||Virgin||Piano, Hammond Organ|
|1993||Darlene & Co||Absence of Uniformity||Sovereign||–|
|1994||El Vez||How Great Thou Art||Sympathy for the Record Industry||Hammond Organ|
|Fun in Español||Sympathy for the Record Industry||Hammond Organ|
|Victoria Williams||Loose||Atlantic||Hammond Organ|
|1995||Edwin McCain||Honor Among Thieves||Lava/Atlantic||Hammond Organ|
|1996||Tina & the B-Side Movement||Salvation||Sire/Elektra||Piano, Hammond Organ, Farfisa|
|El Vez||Never Been To Spain (Until Now)||Munster||Keyboards|
|Phil Cody||The Sons of Intemperance Offering||Interscope||Piano, Accordion, Hammond Organ, Mellowtron|
|The Wallflowers||Bringing Down the Horse||Interscope||Organ, Piano|
|The Hookers||Calico||RCA||Piano, Accordion, Hammond Organ|
|Rickie Lee Jones||Party of Five||Warner||–|
|1997||The Wallflowers||KCRW Rare on Air, Vol. 3||Mammoth||Piano|
|The Honeyrods||The Honeyrods||Capricorn||Piano, Wurlitzer|
|Everclear||So Much for the Afterglow||Capitol||Vox Organ|
|Uma||Fare Well||Refuge||Piano, Hammond Organ, Vox Organ, Optigan|
|Soul Asylum||I Know What You Did Last Summer||Sony Columbia||–|
|Andy If||Road Trip||CU|
|1998||Richie Sambora||Undiscovered Soul||Mercury||Accordion, Hammond Organ, Clapping, Optigan|
|Agents of Good Roots||Only By One||RCA||Organ|
|Esthero||Breath From Another||Sony/Works||Optigan|
|Scott Thomas Band||California||Elektra|
|Grant Lee Buffalo||Jubilee||Slash/Warner|
|Matt Brown||Morning After Medicine Show||EMI Uncle Green, released 2011||Keyboards|
|2002||Red Letter Days||Interscope||Keyboards|
|2005||Foo Fighters||In Your Honor||RCA Records/Roswell||Keyboards|
|The Wallflowers||Rebel, Sweetheart||Interscope||Keyboards|
|2006||Willie Nile||Streets of New York||00:02:59/Reincarnate||Hammond Organ|
|Foo Fighters||Skin and Bones||RCA Records||Piano, Organ, Accordion, Keyboard|
|Pete Yorn||Westerns EP||Red Ink / Columbia||B-3 Organ, production|
|2007||Mike Brown & the Sneakies||American Hotel||Oasis Entertainment||Hammond Organ, Keyboard|
|Coheed and Cambria||Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume Two: No World for Tomorrow||Columbia Records||Synthesisers and Piano|
|Foo Fighters||Echoes, Silence, Patience, and Grace||RCA Records||Accordion, Keyboard|
|2008||The Fallen Stars||Where the road bends||Kiss My Squirrel Records||Hammond Organ, Keyboard, Accordion|
|2011||Foo Fighters||Wasting Light||RCA Records||Keyboards, Organ, Mellotron|
|2012||The Wallflowers||Glad All Over||Columbia/Interscope||Keyboards|
|2013||Joseph Arthur||The Ballad of Boogie Christ||Lonely Astronaut Records||Organ|
|Chuck Ragan||Till Midnight||Ten to Two Records||Keyboard, glockenspiel, accordion|
|2014||Gunash||Same Old Nightmare||Go Down Records||Hammond Organ|
|Foo Fighters||Sonic Highways||RCA Records||Keyboards|
|2015||Foo Fighters||Saint Cecilia (EP)||RCA Records||Keyboards|