David Ullmann
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David Ullmann

New York City, New York, United States

New York City, New York, United States
Band Jazz


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"David Ullmann-Hidden"

I talked a few weeks ago about David Ullmann, the stylish New York based guitarist who was the allaboutjazz.com free mp3 of the day. Well I said i might get the album, and I have, and I'm going to write about it now, oh you lucky people.

I recall mentioning that Ullmann reminded me, on 'Lorca', of the late Grant Green. Well the album reveals him to be adept at many styles of jazz guitar. Running through the album is a sparseness of playing that gives his playing greater impact as well as allowing the sidemen space to play. All 3 of them are on great form too - Ashlar's electric piano solo on 'Astor Place', or the drum'n'bass rhythmic drive of 'Hidden'. These upbeat tracks with adventurous rhythmic and harmonic leanings are only half of the story. Tracks like 'You Don't Know What Love Is' demonstrate that they can handle gentler material. Several other tracks on the album are taken in a straighter style like this, and the contrast is most pleasing, at least to this reviewer's ears.

The album is available to buy from this link - I saw a comment there saying that this was a good album to listen to if you thought that jazz artists were all 80 years old - well, that sums it up very well. This is a record full of vitality, and it makes me very happy to know that there are still artists out there doing this kind of thing. - The Daily Jazz


By Frank Rubolino

Electric currents of guitarist Ullmann and pianist Ashlar steer the program on Hidden. Using primarily a quartet lineup with rotating bassists and drummers, Ullmann sails through seven of his compositions and two other selections. The music glides at an easy gait as Ullmann and Ashlar churn out rounds of improvised choruses while keeping the mood of the set light and lively. On several selections, the combination of electric guitar and piano suggest the ambiance created by the fusion movement of the 1970s. A different image is cast when acoustic support is on hand, such as with ?You Don?t Know What Love Is,? a pleasantly presented ballad where bassist Thomas and drummer Bannincasa support Ullmann?s lyricism. On two tracks, Ullmann supplements the group with saxophonists. Mogensen and Zachery join him on ?Waterfall,? a smoothly flowing composition with sweet soprano and alto refrains guiding the way. Mogensen also appears on tenor with his composition ?Where Do We Go,? a delightful ballad where the melodic Ullmann interacts tenderly along with solid walking support from acoustic bassist O?Blanney. The album closes in a funky vein with the return of groovy electric sounds. Ullmann shows several sides of his personality through his compositional skills on this frictionless recording. His pieces have substance and march to an agreeable beat to allow him to spew out his soft-edged improvisations. Laid-back and casual is the order of the day, and Ullmann does it quite nicely. - Cadence Magazine



Young New York-based jazz guitarist DAVID ULLMAN has released his debut CD, "HIDDEN," and it is creating a stir in the jazz world. We are proud to be one of a few exclusive shops offering this CD, so get on board now.
- nycd-online.com

"All About Jazz Review"

Like an ace pitcher, guitarist and composer David Ullmann keeps us on our toes with a wily array of different looks, angles and spins on Hidden. There is a sense of movement throughout the tracks, as if one were wandering through a city and passing through various neighborhoods. Tabla and Fender Rhodes are employed, along with more traditional instrumentation, to add subtle shifts and textures.

The title track opens the album with mad bass and skittering tabla lending a frenetic feel to the snaky melody. As through the rest of the album, the players keep their solos to the point, emphasizing the general sonic atmosphere rather than focusing on individual statements. That said, both Ullmann and Joe Ashlar put in some fine work on guitar and Fender Rhodes, respectively.

�Memory Games� is a particular standout: a lovely piano ballad that recalls “Unchained Melody,� infused with the sort of grace and sense of healing that marks the coda to “Layla.� The track is primarily a showcase for Ashlar before Ullmann briefly solos, but the entire band is featured in deep focus so that the net effect is one of unity and intense collective concentration.

Elsewhere, saxophone player Rene Mogensen contributes some nicely relaxed tenor work on his own composition “Where Do We Go.� Bassist Pedro Giraurdo brings a deep and mournful undertow to “You Don’t Know What Love Is,� droning and slurring beneath his bandmates.

Hidden is an exciting record that reflects restless creativity. Each track builds on the next and works to keep the listener on guard and engaged. This dynamism leads to a satisfying sense of taking a journey as record plays. - Stephen Latessa


Hidden (wet cash records) -David Ullmann Quartet
Live at North Six (liftoff records)-Mission on Mars
The Tarana Sessions (liftoff records)-Mission on Mars
Expanding Horizons (capstone)-NYU New Music Ensemble
Revenge of The Unsigned (reaction records)-Namaste



David Ullmann is a Composer/Guitarist actively involved in the jazz and improvisation scene in New York City. His debut CD "Hidden," released on Wet Cash Records, is an acoustic-based jazz project that incorporates elements of Electronica and other music. The material on the album was inspired by a weekly gig at The Knitting Factory's Tap Bar, where the challenge was to find music that worked within the parameters of the group and fit the changing tastes of the Knitting Factory audience. The result is a recording that moves in moods and styles and maintains resonant thematic unity. It features as the core group Joe Ashlar on piano, Vin Scialla on Drums and Pedro Giraurdo on Bass. Through the usage of different textural colors, David Ullmann weaves a unique tapestry of sound. Fender Rhodes, Tabla, and traditional jazz saxophones are all fused together to create an amalgamation of a new york existence. Drawing comparisons from Soulive to Jazzanova to Bill Frisell, the key ingredient to this recording is the idea that every piece is an actual song with an emotional feel, not just a technical exercise.
David is a member of the group MISSION: ON MARS, a mixing canvas of live instruments, eastern rage, breakbeats, live drum'n bass, Indian sitar melodies and a funk chilled crater of moon walking beats. Founded in New York City in 1999, MISSION: ON MARS is comprised of forward thinking musicians who are challenging the world of mass-beat production. M:oM has released music on Liftoff Records, major label compilations (Ark21/ Universal). Stellar live sets at the Knitting Factory, NYC and PS1 Warmup Series have taken listeners into a new realm, only imaginable on another planet. M:oM has shared shows with Ming and FS, Karsh Kale, and DJ Rehka.
David has also written music for theater and film. His first film project, Atsushi Funahashi's "Echoes," was well received by critics and film festivals including three Jury and Audience Awards at Annonay International Film Festival in France and the High Hope Award at the Munich International Film Festival.
His second piece, David Gluck's "How Henry Miller Changed My Life," premiered as part of the New York International Film and Video Festival and has been shown at the Provincetown International Film Festival.

Along with longtime collaborator Vin Scialla, David composed music for The Cavaliere Players "Human Experiment from the Big Apple Metropolis," which premiered at The Fringe Festival in New York City. HEBAM is a multi-media exploration of people's lives within New York. It incorporates Tap, Ballet and Modern Dance along with live visuals and traditional dramatics. The score created reflected these disparate stylistically and emotionally shifts.

David has performed at the JVC Jazz Festival, Artwallah, Sono Arts, and The Fringe Festival. David is a featured soloist on the NYU New Music Ensemble CD "Expanding Horizons" and has performed at Merkin Hall, Tulane and LSU. At Tulane he was also featured as a clinician.

He is a graduate of the BA/BFA program at the Mannes New School Jazz and Contemporary Music Program (now just called New School Jazz) where he studiedd with Vic Juris, Peter Bernstein, Garry Dial, Richard Boukas, Gene Bertoncini, Chico Hamilton and Glenn Alexander. Other studies include Classical Guitar at Mannes with Francisco Rouldan.