Bassist/Composer Avishai Cohen was one of the first Israel-born jazz musicians to make a big splash in the U.S. Cohen moved to New York permanently in 1992 after studying classical/jazz piano and bass in Israel, (Music & Arts Academy and with Maestro Michael Klinghoffer) and in the United States (in St. Louis). After attending both the New School and Mannes College of Music in New York City, Cohen performed with fellow students such as pianist Brad Mehldau. After studying with bassist Andy Gonzalez, Cohen performed in a Latin jazz band that included Abel Rodriguez and Ray Santiago. As a result of this experience, combined with his deep understanding and love of Latin Music and jazz, Cohen got the call to join pianist Danilo Perez’s trio. Cohen moved on from Perez’s band in 1996 to become a founding member of the legendary Chick Corea’s new sextet, “Origin.”
“...nobody’ll kvetch about getting an extra helping of Cohen’s deep, ermine- edged bass, which he strokes with a subtlety hardly anyone matches.” --Greg Burk, L.A. Weekly
After a long period of performing in small clubs, Cohen got a phone call from the jazz pianist Chick Corea and was given a record contract. In 1996, he became a founding member of Corea's sextet Origin, and his first four albums as a leader were subsequently released under Corea's Stretch label. Cohen performed in Corea's bands until as late as 2003, when he left the Chick Corea New Trio and started his own record label; he currently performs with his own group, the Avishai Cohen Trio (with New Jersey's Mark Guiliana on drums and Israel's Shai Maestro on the piano). His later albums have been released by this formation with extended lineup including wind instruments.
Aside from Corea, Cohen has accompanied, recorded or performed with several noted jazz figures such as Bobby McFerrin, Roy Hargrove, Herbie Hancock, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Nnenna Freelon and Paquito D'Rivera. Other collaborators include Claudia Acuña (Wind from the South, 2000), Alicia Keys (studio recording) and the London and Israel Philharmonic Orchestras (concert performances). Cohen has been cited as "undoubtedly the most successful" of Israel's jazz exports by The Jerusalem Post, a "jazz visionary of global proportions" by Down Beat, one of the 100 Most Influential Bass Players of the 20th Century by Bass Player magazine, and "a great composer" and "a genius musician" by Chick Corea himself.
26th March 2011
Avishai Cohen - Double bass, vocals
Shai Maestro - Keyboards
Amir Bresler - Percussion
Cully Jazz Festival - Suisse.