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Richard Shulman

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Richard Shulman is a gifted pianist/composer with a distinctive goal: creating music that's joyful to the ear and uplifting to the spirit. Both sophisticated and accessible, his work has the harmonic sense of Keith Jarrett and Bill Evans and is designed to inspire and soothe, even when it swings. Other influences include Beethoven, Schumann, Herbie Hancock, Pat Metheny, Chick Corea, and Miles Davis. Trained early in classical piano, Shulman learned jazz improvisation from Marian McParland and Chuck Mangione at the Eastman School of Music and later studied with Frank Foster while obtaining his master's degree in composition from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He's played and/or recorded with Thad Jones, Pepper Adams, Grady Tate, Eddie Gomez, and Ron Carter, among others. Shulman's jazz path was clear until an injury to both hands stimulated his interest in the healing power of music. While still playing jazz with his own group and releasing four jazz albums between 1980 and 1986 (Wonder, A Simple Gift, Solo Flight, and Open Spaces), he also began composing piano, synthesizer, vocal, and orchestral music to facilitate meditation, self-exploration, and a more peaceful world. Since the late '80s, Shulman has recorded 14 CDs that would be fairly characterized as new age, although they're more sophisticated than the dreamy noodling most people associate with that genre. Shulman made his Carnegie Hall debut in 1994, and has performed at the Kool Jazz Festival as well as the United Nations; he has composed over 50 pieces for jazz quartet as well as works for theater and dance groups, choirs, chamber ensembles, and symphony orchestras. In 1997, he moved from Woodstock, NY, to the blue mountains of Asheville, NC, where he continues to mix spirituality with music and has begun playing more jazz gigs to introduce his unique brand of fusion to a wider audience. ~ Judith Schlesinger

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