Uri Caine

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Uri Caine
Uri Caine.jpg
Photo by Simon Miele
Background information
Born (1956-06-08) June 8, 1956 (age 59)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, composer
Instruments Piano

Uri Caine (born June 8, 1956, Philadelphia, United States) is an American classical and jazz pianist and composer.


Early years[edit]

The son of Burton Caine, a professor at Temple Law School, Caine began playing piano at seven and studied with French jazz pianist Bernard Peiffer at 12. He later studied at the University of Pennsylvania, where he came under the tutelage of George Crumb. He also gained a greater familiarity with classical music in this period and worked at clubs in Philadelphia.

Recording debut[edit]

Caine played professionally after 1981, and by 1985 had his recording debut with the Rochester-Gerald Veasley band. In the 1980s, he moved to New York City, where he continues to live. He also appeared on a klezmer album with Mickey Katz and played with modern jazz musicians Don Byron and Dave Douglas.

Grammy nomination[edit]

In 2009, Uri Caine was nominated for a Grammy in the category of Best Classical Crossover Album. His work "The Othello Syndrome" re-imagined the Verdi opera Otello as a modern piece featuring soul singer Bunny Sigler.[1]

Classical repertoire[edit]

Caine, who has recorded 16 albums, is celebrated for his eclectic and inventive interpretations of the classical repertoire. His 1997 jazz tribute to Gustav Mahler received an award from the German Mahler Society, while outraging some jury members.[2] Caine has also reworked Bach's Goldberg Variations, Beethoven's Diabelli Variations, as well as Wagner, Schumann and Mozart.

The Bedrock Project and other collaborations[edit]

In 2001, he teamed up with drummer Zach Danziger to conceive an original project fusing live jungle and drum 'n' bass beats with fusion jazz called "Uri Caine Bedrock 3". They have toured worldwide, including with the New York-based DJ Olive.

Also in 2001, he released with Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson (drummer with internationally acclaimed hip hop band The Roots) and Christian McBride an eclectic album called The Philadelphia Experiment which contains jazz, funk, instrumental hip hop and jazz fusion. This album was produced by Aaron Levinson and features collaborations such as Pat Martino on guitar and Jon Swana on trumpet.

In 2005, Caine was named Composer-in-Residence of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra through the 2008–2009 season.

In 2006, he recorded an album of composition from John Zorn's second Masada book called Moloch: Book of Angels Volume 6.

On 28 February 2008 he was special guest of the Italian jazz awards red carpet show in Genoa (Italy) at Teatro della Tosse.[3]

In 2010, he was named a United States Artists Fellow and awarded an unrestricted grant.[4]

In November 2012, Caine collaborated with drummer Han Bennink to release a live album entitled Sonic Boom.[5]

In 2013, Caine was named Composer-in-Residence at Mannes College for the 2013–2014 academic year.


As leader/co-leader[edit]

As sideman[edit]

With Dave Douglas

With Frank London

  • Nigunim (Tzadik, 1998)

With Zohar

  • Keter (Knitting Factory, 1999)

With John Zorn


  1. ^ "Grammy Award For Best Classical Crossover Album Nominees List". Ranker.com. 2010-02-18. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 
  2. ^ Zwerin, Mike. "Uri Caine: Interpretive Musicologist". CultureKiosque.com. Retrieved 3 May 2011.  External link in |work= (help)
  3. ^ "Archivio". Archivio.lastampa.it. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ "Jazz Pianist and Composer". Uri Caine. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 

External links[edit]