Brandon Goldberg, now 16 years old, has been playing piano and making music since he was three years old. He found his passion for jazz by listening to his favorite artists including Herbie Hancock, Bill Evans, Oscar Peterson, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and John Coltrane.
Goldberg has performed at the Newport, Litchfield and Caramoor Jazz Festivals as well as the Monterey Jazz Festival with the Next Generation Jazz Orchestra and Bravo Niagara Festival of the Arts. He has played on the stages of the most prestigious jazz venues including Jazz at Lincoln Center, Dizzy’s Club, Birdland Theatre, The Blue Note, Mezzrow, The Apollo Theater, The Side Door in Old Lyme, Keystone Korner in Baltimore, The Adrienne Arsht Center and FAENA Theater in Miami.
As a leader, Goldberg has released two albums, both earning four-star reviews from Downbeat Magazine. His debut album, LET’S PLAY!, released in April 2019, features Ben Wolfe on bass, Donald Edwards on drums and special guest Marcus Strickland on tenor saxophone. The album has three original compositions and six standards and reached top seven on the Jazz Week charts. It was recognized by Downbeat Magazine as one of the top albums of 2019.
Goldberg’s second album, In Good Time, released in September 2021 features the late, great drummer Ralph Peterson, Jr., with Stacy Dillard on saxophones, Josh Evans on trumpet and Luques Curtis on bass. In Good Time showcases five original compositions and five standards, garnering rave reviews from London Jazz News and four stars from All About Jazz and Jazzwise. In Good Time is also recognized by Downbeat Magazine as one of the top albums of 2021.
In his hometown of Miami, Florida, Goldberg has been a featured performer with The Miami Symphony Orchestra (MISO), the Jazz Roots Series at the Adrienne Arsht Center under the direction of Shelly Berg, the WDNA Miami Downtown Jazz Festival, The Melton Mustafa Jazz Festival and the FAENA Summer Jazz Series.
In 2018 and 2019, The Miami Symphony Orchestra commissioned Goldberg to write two original compositions for a full symphony, “Surroundings” and “Rhapsody in F”, which were both performed live and recorded by MISO and received high praise and accolades.
Goldberg was recognized by Downbeat magazine as the Student Music Awards winner in the Jazz Soloist and Original Composition categories three years in a row – 2018, 2019 and 2020. In 2020, Goldberg also won the Jazz Arrangement category for his arrangement of “Blackbird” and most recently, in 2021, he received the Outstanding Performance distinction in the Jazz Soloist and Original Composition categories.
Goldberg was a featured performer at TEDxYouthMiami, TEDxBocaRaton and TEDxCoconutGrove conferences. He also works closely with the Jazz Foundation of America (JFA) and performed at their annual Gala – A Great Night in Harlem at the famous Apollo Theater where he presented McCoy Tyner with his Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.
At a young age, Goldberg had some break-through moments when he appeared on National television in Season 1 and Season 2 of NBC’s Little Big Shots, The Steve Harvey Show and the Harry Connick, Jr. Show.
Recent Press Quotes and/or Reviews:
“…he’s got not only the chops, but an inspiring sense of restraint and style in both playing and composing on this album…” — George W. Harris, Jazz Weekly, June 27, 2019
“Pianist Brandon Goldberg — a fresh new face in the literal and figurative sense — made a nice push into the Top 10 with his new album Let’s Play, on which the abundantly skilled young keyboardist showcases his ample dexterity and wise-beyond-his-years sound.” – Brian Zimmerman, JAZZIZ, June 2019
“Let’s Play!” introduces the listener to a gifted pianist and composer, a sensitive interpreter, and an inventive improviser who is deeply immersed in jazz. – Lucy Tauss, JazzTimes, July/August 2019
“He understands the basics and nuances of making jazz – and swings like mad in the great company of his trio mates” – Ken Franckling, April 2019
“ ‘McCoy’…sizzles with Tyner-like speed, flair and intricacy. Even more impressive is his take on Thelonious Monk’s “Well, You Needn’t,” which under Goldberg’s adroit and nimble fingers evokes Bud Powell. It’s this kind of maturity and proficiency that pervades ‘Let’s Play!’…” — Downbeat, Herb Boyd, August 2019
“…the young man with his name at the top of the bill here no more needs to flaunt his instrumental technique than his composing chops: a preponderance of standards like Duke Ellington’s “In A Sentimental Mood” and Lennon/McCartney’s “Blackbird” surround three comparably distinct originals.” – Doug Collette, All About Jazz, May 2019
“He is a player who follows his own muse opening with Monk’s “Well You Needn’t,” where he perhaps plays less angularly and with more fluidity than usual. He hints at the melody more than stating it but impresses with his imagination and the logic of his solo…It is engrossing to see how Brandon constructs and develops a solo showing a musical maturity well beyond his age.”
– Ron Weinstock, June 2019