Ophir Kutiel (aka Kutiman) is an Israeli-born composer, instrumentalist, and producer known for his dance- and groove-oriented style and various collaborative, online, video-based music projects. He also works as one-half of the production duo Sabbo & Kuti. Born in Jerusalem in 1982, Kutiel started out on the piano at age six and by his teens was also playing drums and guitar. After high school, he studied jazz at Rimon Music College, where he met fellow producer Sabbo, who introduced him to reggae, Afrobeat, and funk. In 2006, he signed to the Cologne-based Melting Pot Music. A year later, he delivered his debut album, Kutiman, which included the singles "No Groove Where I Come From" and "Music Is Ruling My World," featuring Habanot Nechama's Karolina (Karolina Avratz).
Around this time, Kutiel developed his collaborative Thru You project, which found him sampling completely unrelated YouTube videos by various musicians from across multiple genres and combining them into new songs. The finished videos released in 2009 went viral, racking up over ten million views, and helped raise Kutiel's profile. Since then, he has participated in similar video projects including Thru You Too, My Favorite Color, Off the Grid, and several city-based projects, including videos for Krakow, Tokyo, and Tel Aviv. An in-demand studio pro, Kutiel works regularly with Sabbo in the production duo Sabbo & Kuti. In 2010, they won Israel's ACUM award for their work on Karolina's album, What Do I Do Now? As a solo artist, Kutiman returned with the jazz-inflected Space Cassava in 2016. A year later, he released 6 A.M., which featured appearances by Adam Scheflan and Karolina. ~ Matt Collar