Joel Weiskopf Biography
Pianist and composer Joel Weiskopf was raised in Syracuse, New York, where he grew up studying piano and trumpet. He graduated with honors from The New England Conservatory of Music. He has studied piano with Jaki Byard, Kenny Werner and Fred Hersh. At age 24 Joel toured with and composed for the great big band leader Woody Herman. Herman called Joel “One of the great young jazz musicians of our time”. While with Herman, Weiskopf worked with jazz greats such as Stan Getz, Cab Calloway, Quincy Jones, Maynard Ferguson, Buddy DeFranco, Major Holley, Al Cohn, Flip Phillips and Anita O’day. After the year with Herman, while in New York, Joel became a member of the bands of Jimmy Cobb and Gerry Mulligan, and also performed with Clark Terry, Ray Brown, Hubert Laws, The Buddy Rich Band, Larry Coryell, Mel Lewis and the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Tom Harrell, Billy Hart, Julius Hemphill, Walter Perkins, Teddy Kotick, Warren Vache, Dakota Staton, Abraham Laboriel, Charli Persip, L. Subramanium, Rufus Reid, Carl Allen, John Patitucci, Brian Blade, Bill Kirchner, Walt Weiskopf, as well as many others. Joel was the co-winner of the 1989 Great American Jazz Piano Competition and the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Grant to study composition with composer Dary John Mizelle in 1995. Weiskopf has taught jazz studies at The New School, New York University, Long Island University, and is currently on the jazz studies faculty at New Jersey City University and Kean University. A Jewish believer in Jesus, Joel's passion is to share the message of salvation through Messiah Yeshua (Jesus Christ) with Jews and Gentiles using both music and words. Joel has composed and arranged many jazz and gospel-jazz songs, several of which can be found on his five critically acclaimed CD recordings for the Criss Cross and Steeplechase Jazz labels. His newest recording Where Angels Fear to Tread was released in February of 2016.