Recently presented at the IBS bookshop in Florence, Uri Caine, musica in tempo reale is the first essay ever published about one of the most influential musicians of our time, American pianist and composer Uri Caine. Written by Florentine journalist Enzo Boddi, a regular contributor to Musica Jazz and Jazz Hot magazines, and published in 2015 by Sinfonica Jazz, the essay focuses on specific aspects of Caine’s multi-faceted output.
Born in Philadelphia in 1956 and based in New York since the mid-Eighties, Caine has achieved a worldwide reputation thanks to his open-minded attitude, completely in harmony with the complexity of our time. A jazz musician at heart, Caine grew up listening to, and drawing inspiration from, the major exponents of jazz, rhythm’n’blues and soul scenes of his native Philadelphia. At the same time, he fulfilled classical studies at Penn University with master composers like George Rochberg and George Crumb.
Caine’s encyclopaedic piano style spans from ragtime and stride to modal and post-bop, Herbie Hancock being one of his major influences. The piano trio is the ideal setting for him to demonstrate his skills as an instrumentalist.
Moreover, he has reworked excerpts from classical authors such as Mahler, Wagner, Schumann, Bach, Beethoven and Verdi. He has also composed several contemporary works for orchestra, ensemble and string quartet.
Caine’s works have gained wide popularity and appreciation in Europe, particularly in Italy. He has established a close relationship with Florence thanks to his past collaborations with prestigious institutions like ORT (Orchestra Regionale della Toscana) and Tempo Reale, the music research center founded by composer Luciano Berio, to whom Caine dedicated his most daring works, Real Time and Ofaqim.
For all these reasons, as the title of the essay suggests, Caine’s music can be properly defined “in real time”.