Richie Beirach

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Richie Beirach
Richie Beirach in the 1980s
Richie Beirach in the 1980s
Background information
Birth nameRichard Alan Beirach
Born (1947-05-23) 23 May 1947 (age 76)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Occupation(s)Musician, composer
Years active1972–present

Richard Alan Beirach (born 23 May 1947) is an American jazz pianist and composer.

Early life[edit]

Beirach was born in New York City. He initially studied both classical music and jazz. While still attending high school, he took lessons from pianist Lennie Tristano.[1] Beirach later entered the Berklee College of Music. After one year, he left Berklee and began attending the Manhattan School of Music. While there, he studied with Ludmilla Ulehla. In 1972, he graduated from the Manhattan School of Music with a Master's Degree in Music Theory and Composition.


In 1972 Beirach began working with Stan Getz. He also worked with Chet Baker. Beirach has maintained an ongoing musical partnership with David Liebman from the late-1960s to the present in the groups Lookout Farm and Quest. In addition, Liebman and Beirach have frequently performed and recorded as a duo.

Several of Beirach's compositions – "Leaving" and "Elm", for instance – have found their way into the jazz standard repertoire.

Playing style[edit]

Beirach's style is influenced by Art Tatum, Bill Evans, McCoy Tyner, Chick Corea and his earlier classical training. It is also individualistic with many touches all its own.


As leader/co-leader[edit]

Year recorded Title Label Personnel/Notes
1974 Eon ECM Trio, with Frank Tusa (bass), Jeff Williams (drums)
1975 Methuselah Trio Trio, with Frank Tusa (bass, electric bass), Jeff Williams (drums)
1975 Forgotten Fantasies A&M Horizon Duo, with Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax, echoplex, phase shifter, alto flute)
1975 Sunday Song Trio Duo, with Frank Tusa (bass)
1976 Zal Trio One track solo piano; three tracks duo, with Yoshiaki Masuo [ja] (guitar); two tracks duo with Terumasa Hino (flugelhorn, trumpet)
1976 Leaving Trio/Storyville Duo, with Jeremy Steig (alto flute, soprano flute, bass flute, piccolo)
1977 Hubris ECM Solo piano
1978 Omerta Trio/Storyville Duo, with Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax, alto flute)
1978 Kahuna Trio One track solo piano; one track duo, with Masahiko Togashi (percussion)
1979 Elm ECM Trio, with George Mraz (bass), Jack DeJohnette (drums)
1981 Elegy for Bill Evans Palo Alto Trio, with George Mraz (bass), Al Foster (drums)
1981 Rendezvous IPI Duo, with George Mraz (bass)
1981 Live in Tokyo: Solo Concert Break Time Solo piano; in concert; also released by PJL as Complete Solo Concert 1981 with two extra tracks
1982 Breathing of Statues Magenta/CMP Solo piano
1983 Continuum Baybridge/Eastwind Solo piano
1984 Ayers Rock Polydor Trio, with Terumasa Hino (trumpet), Masahiko Togashi (percussion)
1985 Antarctica Pathfinder Solo piano
1985 Double Edge Storyville Duo, with Dave Liebman
1985 The Duo: Live Advance Duo, with Dave Liebman
1986 Ballads Sony Japan Solo piano
1987 Ballads 2 Sony Japan Solo piano
1987? Water Lilies: Richie Beirach Plays Musical Portraits of Claude Monet Sony Japan
1987 Emerald City Pathfinder/Evidence Duo, with John Abercrombie (guitar synth)
1987 Common Heart Owl Solo piano
1989 Some Other Time: A Tribute to Chet Baker Triloka With Randy Brecker (trumpet, flugelhorn), Michael Brecker (tenor sax), John Scofield (guitar), George Mraz (bass), Adam Nussbaum (drums)
1989? Chant CMP Duo, with Dave Liebman
1990 Convergence Triloka Duo, with George Coleman (tenor sax, soprano sax)
1990 Inamorata EAU Solo piano
1990 Self Portraits CMP Solo piano
1990–91 Sunday Songs Blue Note Solo piano
1991 Themes and Impromptu Variations EAU Solo piano
1992 The Duo Session Nabel Duo, with Laurie Antonioli (vocals)
1992 Richie Beirach at Maybeck Concord Jazz Solo piano; in concert
1992 Too Grand SteepleChase Duo, with Andy LaVerne (piano)
1993 Universal Mind SteepleChase Duo, with Andy LaVerne (piano)
1993 Trust Evidence Trio, with Dave Holland (bass), Jack DeJohnette (drums)
1994 Solo Piano Recital: Live in Japan Label Les Jungle Solo piano; in concert
1996–97 The Snow Leopard Alfa/Evidence Most tracks trio, with George Mraz (bass), Billy Hart (drums); some tracks quartet, with Gregor Huebner (violin) added
1997 Freedom Joy Trial Duo, with Masahiko Togashi (percussion)
1998 New York Rhapsody Tokuma Duo, with Gregor Huebner (violin)
1999 What Is This Thing Called Love? Venus Trio, with George Mraz, Billy Hart (drums)
1999 Round About Bartok ACT Trio, with George Mraz (bass), Gregor Huebner (violin)
2000 Romantic Rhapsody Venus Trio, with George Mraz, Billy Hart (drums)
2001 Round About Federico Mompou ACT Trio, with George Mraz (bass), Gregor Huebner (violin)
2002 Round About Monteverdi ACT Trio, with George Mraz (bass), Gregor Huebner (violin)
2002 No Borders Venus Most tracks trio, with George Mraz, Billy Hart (drums); some tracks quartet, with Gregor Huebner (violin) added
2006 Manhattan Reverie Venus Trio, with George Mraz, Billy Hart (drums)
2007 Duality: The First Ten Years Niveau/Nuromusic Duo, with Gregor Huebner (violin)
2007 Summer Night Venus Trio, with George Mraz, Billy Hart (drums)
2008? Crossing Over Niveau Solo piano
2008 Jazz Adagio Venus Solo piano
2009 Unspoken Outnote Duo, with Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax, flute)
2009 Quest for Freedom Sunnyside With Dave Liebman (soprano sax, flute), Frankfurt Radio Bigband
2010 Knowinglee Outnote Trio, with Lee Konitz (alto sax, soprano sax), Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax)
2010 Impressions of Tokyo: Ancient City of the Future Outnote Solo piano
2012 Live at Birdland New York ACT Quintet, with Gregor Huebner (violin), Randy Brecker (trumpet), George Mraz (bass), Billy Hart (drums); in concert
2016/17 Aftermath Jazzline Quartet, with Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax, wooden flute, c-flute), Florian Van Volxem (buchla synthesizer), Leo Henrichs (modified tympani, gong)
2017 Gaia, The New Richie Beirach Trio Jazzsick Trio, with Regina Litvinova (keyboards), Christian Scheuber (drums)
2018 Empathy Jazzline Duo, with Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax)
2019 Lifelines Jazzline Trio, with Dave Liebman (tenor sax, soprano sax), Jack DeJohnette (drums)
2019 Crossing Borders Zoho Duo, with Gregor Huebner (violin) with the WDR Big Band
2019 Live Jazzsick Quartet, with Reiner Witzel (alto & soprano sax), Joscha Oetz (bass), Christian Scheuber (drums)
2020 Avala Jazzsick Duo, with Christian Scheuber (drums, percussion)
2020 Heart Of Darkness Jazzline Solo piano
2022 Leaving Jazzline Solo piano

As a member[edit]


  • Quest (Trio, 1982) – recorded in 1981
  • Quest II (Storyville, 1986) - Live
  • Midpoint: Quest III (Storyille, 1988)
  • N.Y. Nites: Standards (PAN Music/NEC Avenue, 1988)
  • Natural Selection (Pathfinder/NEC Avenue, 1988)
  • Of One Mind (CMP, 1990)
  • Redemption; Quest Live in Europe (Hatology, 2007) - Live
  • Re-Dial - Live In Hamburg (Outnote, 2007) - Live
  • Circular Dreaming (enja, 2012) - recorded in 2011

As sideman[edit]

With George Adams

With John Abercrombie

With John Scofield

With Chet Baker

With Frank Tusa

With Dave Liebman

With Jeremy Steig

With Steve Davis

With Laurie Antonioli

  • The Duo Session (Nabel, 2005)

With Ron McClure Trio

  • Inspiration (Ken, 1991)

With George Mraz

  • Catching Up (1991)
  • My Foolish Heart (1995)
  • Jazz (1995)


  1. ^ Shim, Eunmi (2007). Lennie Tristano – His Life in Music. University of Michigan Press. p. 134. ISBN 978-0-472-11346-0.

External links[edit]