TUOMO UUSITALO

Pianist | Composer | Arranger | Educator

 

Tuomo Uusitalo is an award-winning pianist, composer, arranger and educator. Having released two albums as a leader, and appearing on numerous albums as a sideman, he has established himself in the New York jazz scene, and continues touring internationally both as a leader as well as sideman.

 

Born in Tampere, Finland, Tuomo Uusitalo started to play piano at the age of 6.  As a teenager he played different types of music from classical to pop/rock, and soon became fascinated by Jazz and the thrilling possibilities of spontaneous improvisation. 

 

While studying music in Graz, Austria (University of Music and Performing Arts, the oldest jazz institute in Europe), Tuomo already had the chance to work and perform with many jazz legends including Bob Brookmeyer, Billy Hart, Curtis Fuller, Jimmy Cobb and Jim Rotondi, as well as many other well known jazz artists such as Steve Waterman, Riccardo del Fra, Wayne Darling, Juan Garcia-Herreros, Howard Curtis, Stjepko Gut, Charlie Miklin and many others. Since 2007 Tuomo has played and toured all around Europe (Finland, Estonia, United Kingdom, Germany, Holland, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, Italy) as a solo pianist and with various ensembles ranging from Piano Trio to Big Bands.

 

After graduating with honors from University of Music and Performing Arts Graz (Austria) in 2012, Tuomo moved to New York City, and has been living in the city since. He is performing regularly around the city at  numerous venues including NYC's main jazz spots (Smalls, Mezzrow, Fat Cat, Zinc Bar, Cornelia Street Cafe, ShapeshifterLab, Cleopatra's Needle, Garage, University of the Streets, Arturo's etc.). During his time in NYC he has worked with several legendary jazz musicians including Curtis Lundy, Tyler Mitchell, David Schnitter, Jeff Hirschfield, Johnny O'Neal, Greg Bandy and Philip Harper as well as many notable musicians in the scene such as Ulysses Owens Jr., Dayna Stephens, Obed Calvaire, Rich Perry, Justin Brown, Elliot Mason, Peter Slavov, Josh Evans, Brandon Lewis, Gerry Gibbs,  Scott Tixier, Jason Brown, Luques Curtis, Tivon Pennicott, Troy Roberts, Russell Hall, Evan Sherman, Alexander Claffy and Kyle Poole, to name a few.

 

"TRIO" is his 2012 debut CD. The album won the Downbeat Student Music Award in 2012 for the Best Small Jazz Group. At the same year he also won the same price for the Best Latin Group (Marco Antonio Da Costa Group). 2013 he was the recipient of prestigious Sir Roland Hanna Award from City University of New York.

 

 

2013 Tuomo had a chance to bring his original compositions to the Montreal Jazz Festival (Canada), where he was a part of the Jazz Composers-Series. Fall 2014 Tuomo was on the road with The One And Only Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, touring six weeks in The United States and Canada, and continues working with the band in the near future. At the same year he also started histwice a month - residency at the world famous Smalls Jazz Club, performing his original music and hosting the jam session with his trio.                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2016 Tuomo released his second album as a leader, 'Love Song', on Fresh Sound Records, and continues performing in New York City as well as internationally.

 

 

 

Festivals/Tours:

 

Keitele Jazz 2007 (Vuusio Quintet), Finland

Christian Rover & The Finish Allstars "History of Pop" March 2008, Leibzig, Germany (5 Concerts at the Gewandhaus Concert Hall

Finland Tour 2009 (Tuomas Paukku Quintet)

Finland Tour 2011 (Tuomas Paukku Quintet)

Jazz-Espa Helsinki 2009 (Tuomas Paukku Quintet), Finland

Jazzwerkstatt Graz 2009, 2011 (Aly Patmore Midtet, Maaike Den Dunnen European Quintet), Austria

Slovakia Tour 2010 (Juraj Rasi Group) included concerts and TV performances

Germany Tour 2010 (Daniel Cacija Band) concerts and Radio show in Frankfurt)

Cserfo Jazz Festival 2010 (Steve Gut Quintet), Hungary

Holland Tour 2011 (Maaike Den Dunnen European Quintet) show at the North Sea Jazz Festival

UK Tour 2011 (Arabella Sprot Quartet), United Kingdom, performing together with UK trumpeter Steve Waterman

Leibnitz Jazz Festival 2011 (with drummer legend Billy Hart), Austria

Austria/Hungary/Germany/Croatia Tour 2011 (Daniel Cacija Band)

International Jazz Festival Prague 2011 (Maaike Den Dunnen European Quintet), Czech

Jazz Festival Subotica 2012 (Sofija Knezevic Quartet), Serbia

Leibnitz Jazz Festival 2012 (with vocalist Deborah Carter, Austria

Montreal Jazz Festival 2013 (Jazz Composers-Series), Canada

OpenJazzFest Zelena Voda 2013 (Daniel Cacija Band), Slovakia

The One And Only Tommy Dorsey Orchestra USA & Canada Tour Oct 26th - Dec 6th 2014, (USA, Canada)

Colorado Tour 2015 (The Myles Sloniker Trio) May 24th - June 1st, USA

Chelsea Music Festival 2015 (Tuomo Uusitalo Trio feat. Olavi Louhivuori) New York City, USA

 

Discography/Filmography:

 

Marco Antonio Da Costa Group: "Painel" 2010

Daniel Cacija: Live @ Jazzkeller Frankfurt 2011

Arabella Sprot Quintet: "In Between" 2011

Opera Heartbeats (Documentary movie); composer & arranger 2011

Tuomo Uusitalo Trio: "Trio" 2012

King Kahuna: "Big Score" 2014

Daniel Cacija: Lifeline 2015

Tuomo Uusitalo: "Love Song" 2016

Jimmy O'Connell Sixtet: "Arrythmia" 2016

Reggie Watkins: "Avid Admirer" 2016

 

 

Awards:

 

The Art Association of Ylojarvi: Scholarship For An Extraordinary Musical Talent 2006 (Finland)

Jazz Bar Poppari's Rising Young Talent Of The Year 2007 (Finland)

The Downbeat Student Music Award 2012 for the Best Small Group (Tuomo Uusitalo Trio)

The Downbeat Student Music Award 2012 for the Best Latin Group (Marco Antonio Da Costa Group)

Sir Roland Hanna Award, City University of New York 2013

The Downbeat Student Music Award 2013 for the Best Jazz Vocalist (accompanying Vocalist Daniel Cacija)

 

Teaching:

 

Jyvaskyla Conservatory; Deputy Professor for Jazz Piano April 2010 (Finland)

Podgorica Jazz Appreciation Month May 2010; assistant teacher, Steve Gut Quintet (Montenegro)

Jyvaskyla Conservatory; Artist in Residence February 2011; Tuomas Paukku Quintet (Finland)

Numerous private students since 2005 in Finland, Austria, Germany as well as in the USA

Advanced piano teacher at the Gold Coast Arts Center, Great Neck, NY since 2015

 

Education:

 

West-Pirkanmaa Music Academy (Finland); Classical Piano/music theory, graduated with honors 2006

Jyvaskyla Pop-Jazz Conservatory (Finland); Jazz Performance, graduated with honors 2008

The University Of Music And Performing Arts Graz (Austria); Undergraduate Degree Jazz Performance, Composition & Arranging, graduated with honors 2012

The City University Of New York, Queens College (USA); Graduate Degree Jazz Performance, Composition & Arranging, graduated with honors 2014