The Amos Hoffman & Noam Lemish Quartet offers an inspired blend of jazz and Jewish folk melodies. Amos Hoffman is an internationally renowned oud virtuoso and innovator; Noam Lemish is a multi-faceted, world-class pianist and composer. For years, Amos and Noam have been collecting Jewish melodies from different parts of the world including Kurdish, Yemenite, Moroccan, Ladino, Russian and Israeli songs. The quartet’s lyrical and vibrant reimaginings of beloved Jewish melodies have been captivating audiences all across North America.
“exuberant jazz arrangements of Jewish songs…” – Canadian Jewish News
“A level of world-class musicianship that will certainly rank as one of the best this year and years to come…” – JazzBuffalo
“Jazz from Israel and elsewhere captivates…” – San Diego Jewish World
Hoffman and Lemish, both of whom have roots in Israel but have spent much of their adult life in North America, began collaborating in January 2016. Lemish is deeply rooted in jazz and classical music and Hoffman is equally well-versed in jazz, Arab classical music, and North African vernaculars. Together they create a refreshing and compelling sound, filled with vibrant sonorities, unique instrument combinations and compelling arrangements. Their work together started when Lemish, who grew up admiring Hoffman’s pioneering blend of jazz & middle-eastern influences invited Hoffman for a series of performances in Canada. The two musicians clicked on their initial tour and decided to launch the Pardes project. The pairing of their unique talents and backgrounds brings about this truly exciting project. In their two years of performances of the Pardes repertoire Hoffman and Lemish have played an array of venues in both the US and Canada including: New York City, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, San Diego, Berkeley, Buffalo, Rochester, and Columbia (SC).
The meaning of the word Pardes in Hebrew is “orchard” or “fruit garden”. The word also carries with it many layers of meaning in Jewish philosophy. Pardes is etymologically rooted in Farsi and is the origin of the word “paradise”. The songs presented in this project are both geographically diverse in origin and cover a wide-range of emotional terrain and sonic landscapes. The renditions are simultaneously faithful to the songs’ origins and rooted in the African-American and Afro-Caribbean musical traditions. The result is a joyous, uplifting celebration, texturally rich music, filled with groove, lyrical melodies and outstanding solos. In Pardes, Hoffman and Lemish breathe new life into gorgeous melodies that had been forgotten and create music that is appealing both to listeners completely unfamiliar with the melodies in their original context and to those who recognize these songs.
“Hoffman may well be today’s Rosetta Stone of jazz. Equally adept in Middle Eastern harmonies as he is in 52nd Street swing…” – Downbeat Magazine
Amos Hoffman is an Israeli Jazz Oudist and Guitarist known worldwide as a pioneer in fusing the rhythms and melodic themes of the Middle East with Modern Jazz. Hoffman started playing guitar at the age of 6, and oud a few years later. He studied guitar privately, and later attended the prestigious Rubin Academy of Music in Jerusalem. His search for new musical experiences led him first to Amsterdam, and then to New York City, where he played jazz with both estab- lished musicians and up and coming talents like Jason Lindner, bassist Avishai Cohen, and Claudia Acuna. To date, Hoffman has recorded 5 solo albums, The Dreamer (1999), Na’ama (2006), Evolution (2008) Carving (2010) and Back to the City (2015). He has also contributed on dozens more for artists in Israel and worldwide including Avishai Cohen, Kiko Berenguer (Spain), and Jan Mlynarski (Poland). In 2013 Amos was awarded one of Israel’s most prestigious prizes – The Landau Prize for Arts and Sciences for outstanding achievement in the field of Jazz. Now based in the U.S., Hoffman looks forward to creating new musical adventures and reaching an even larger audience.
“Saying Lemish is a jazz pianist is like saying a multi-function Swiss army knife is just a knife.” – Nicolas Grizzle, North Bay Bohemian
Noam Lemish is an Israeli-American jazz pianist and composer currently based out of Toronto, Canada. He has appeared in numerous performances across the US, Canada, Europe, Israel, and in Bhutan having played and performed with such musicians as: Sheila Jordan, John Handy, Julian Lage, James Newton, Dayna Stephens, George Marsh, Frances-Marie Uitti, and many others. He has several recordings to his credit, including The Turning (2016), The Magic Clavier Book I (2015), Nightfall (2013), The People’s King (2010) and Yes And (2008). His compositions include chamber, choral, piano, numerous jazz works and “The People’s King”: a commissioned multi-cultural suite in celebration the King of Bhutan’s 30th birthday composed while teaching music in the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan in 2010. Dr. Lemish is currently teaching at the University of Toronto’s jazz studies program and co-directs the Israeli-Iranian Musical Initiative.