Jherek Bischoff

Los Angeles-based JHEREK BISCHOFF is equal parts composer, arranger, producer and multi-instrumental performer. Hailed a “pop polymath” (The New York Times), a “phenom” (The New Yorker) and “the missing link between the sombre undertones of Ennio Morricone and the unpredictability of John Cale” (NME), Bischoff has blazed an unconventional path in creating an impressive body of work in his 30-odd years. After spending most of the 00’s touring and recording in DIY indie rock and experimental groups including The Dead Science, Parenthetical Girls and The Degenerate Art Ensemble, Bischoff found himself creating orchestral music almost accidentally. Utilizing his DIY background, Bischoff wrote his critically-acclaimed 2012 orchestral pop album Composed on a ukulele, recording one instrument at a time with just one microphone and a laptop, layering each individual track to synthesize the sound of an orchestra. Composed features a host of impressive cameos including David Byrne, Caetano Veloso, Nels Cline (Wilco) and Greg Saunier (Deerhoof). NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross devoted a half-hour interview to discussing the album, Bischoff’s musical background and his unique childhood being raised on a sailboat.

Zola Jesus, Amanda Palmer, Ariel Pink, Ben Folds, Vance Joy, Sondre Lerche and Al Gore, and has performed at venues and festivals around the globe including Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, BAM, Ecstatic Music Festival, Minneapolis’ Walker Art Center / Liquid Music, Seattle’s Moore Theater, Adelaide Festival, and Tasmania’s MONA FOMA. As his focus has turned more toward his work as a composer, Bischoff has seen commissions from Kronos Quartet, Lincoln Center, Brooklyn Youth Chorus, St Ann’s Warehouse, and his work has been performed by the Seattle Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Colorado Symphony, Adelaide Art Orchestra, Wordless Music Orchestra and yMusic.

Ever the prolific creator, Bischoff continued to broaden his musical profile with the addition of his first musical theater score Johnny Breitwieser for Vienna’s Schauspielhaus in 2014, as well as his work on television scores for Starz’s  Blunt Talk and Netflix’s Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp in 2015.

So far, 2016 has already proved a busy and productive year, with the release of  Strung Out In Heaven an EP of David Bowie cover songs arranged for string quartet, with vocals by Amanda Palmer, Anna Calvi, John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig) and Neil Gaiman, resulting in performances of the music at TED Talks in Vancouver, Radio City Music Hall, and Royal Albert Hall for BBC Proms.  

Most recently, Bischoff released his newest record Cistern - an ambient orchestral album which was recorded with a live orchestra in a church in Hudson, New York. He is currently working on a musical for Theater Basel as well as a collaborative album with Kronos Quartet.