The universe is big. The universe is complex. The universe is dynamic.

Everything in it moves.

You can’t move a mountain, but mountains are moving across the surface of the Earth. The Earth itself moves. It spins on its axis and it orbits the sun. The sun wanders through the Milky Way. The galaxies pirouette around each other. Without movement, time would have no meaning. And without time, there would be no music.

Here, then, is a piece of music that reflects the fidgeting universe – complex, dynamic … moving.

Hiromi is the stage name of Hiromi Uehara, pianist, composer and band leader. If I had to sum up her style in a few words, I’d say she is a Japanese Chick Corea – a virtuoso pianist with a classical training and jazz sensibilities.

“Ever since the 2003 release of her debut Telarc CD, Another Mind, Hiromi has electrified audiences and critics east and west, with a creative energy that encompasses and eclipses the boundaries of jazz, classical and pop parameters, taking improvisation and composition to new heights of complexity and sophistication.”

The Hiromi Uehara website

That first release won the Recording Industry Association of Japan’s Jazz Album of the Year award. Hiromi’s second album, Brain, picked up a whole series of awards in 2004, including HMV Japan’s Best Japanese Jazz Album and the Japan Music Pen Club’s Japanese Artist Award, and a year later it was voted Album of the Year in Swing Journal’s 2005 Readers Poll. Further recognition soon followed: she won the Best Jazz Act category at the 2006 Boston Music Awards, and her third album, Spiral, brought her Jazzman of the Year, Pianist of the Year and Album of the Year in Swing Journal’s 2006 Readers Poll.

Move is the title track from a 2013 album by The Trio Project (Hiromi Uehara on piano and keyboards, Anthony Jackson on bass and Simon Phillips on drums). Hiromi’s portfolio now includes 12 studio albums, 7 live albums, and contributions to a further 10 projects, ranging from collaborations with Stanley Clarke and others to film soundtracks. There is no doubting the lady’s talent.

After watching that video, I have to wonder whether Hiromi taps directly into the limitless energy of the universe, or whether it’s the other way around – Hiromi’s fingers (and elbow) are powering everything that moves in this restless universe of ours.

Hiromi Uehara

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