Eldad Tarmu was born in Los Angeles, California, where he started his musical career by studying drums and percussion. He learned to play jazz vibraphone mentored by Dave Pike. Upon graduating from Tel Aviv University in Israel, he returned to the US and began touring internationally with various jazz ensembles, performing in festivals and music venues in over twenty-five countries, mainly in Europe and Asia. In 1997 he released his first record, Aluminum Forest, followed by Get Up Close in 2001, to notable critical acclaim. In 2005 he got a Master's degree in Afro-Latin Music from California State University Los Angeles. The same year he was appointed Head of the Jazz Department at the "Richard Oschanitzky" Jazz School of Tibiscus University in Timisoara, Romania, following a collaboration with Romanian bassist and violinist Johnny Bota, one of the school founders. In 2006, he established a partnership with the American Cultural Center in Bucharest, aiming to contribute to the strengthening of cultural ties between Romania and the USA, by promoting jazz as an American art form. In 2009 he returned to the US to continue his education at Stony Brook University, where he got a second Master's degree, in Classical Composition. He is currently a Doctor of Musical Arts in Jazz Performance from the same school, a degree pursued under the guidance of Ray Anderson. A professor of Music Studies at Hudson County Community College and Raritan Valley Community College in New Jersey, he developed and introduced a Latin-American Music course for HCCC.

Throughout his career, he collaborated with names like Ron AffifRay AndersonMike ClarkBilly HigginsFreddie HubbardTaj MahalFrank MorganPoncho SanchezCybill Shepherd, and Ernie Watts.

In recent years, he has been increasingly focused on original contemporary classical music for chamber ensembles and vibraphone, composing for string quartets and woodwind quintets, as well as works for piano. His Grammy-nominated CD Stained Glass Stories, released in 2017 and dedicated to his late mother, Chicago-born painter Galya Pillin-Tarmu, is available for direct purchase in digital format here.

A new album of jazz-funk originals, called A Tale of Dirt and Flowers, is scheduled for release in early 2023, under the name Tarmu Jazz Quartet, featuring saxophonist Adam Hutcheson, bassist Sam Bevan, and drummer Cengiz Baysal.

Eldad is endorsed by Zildjian and Mike Balter Mallets.

 

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