Ted Reichman is an accordionist, keyboard player, and composer, focusing on connections between improvisation and various forms of folk, popular music, and jazz. He currently works as a film composer and record producer and is on faculty at the Berklee School of Music as well as the New England Conservatory.
Reichman’s work as a composer includes the critically acclaimed albums Emigré (Tzadik), and My Ears are Bent (Skirl). His work in film music includes original scores for the feature films Rick, The Memory Thief, and several documentaries, including Dear Mandela and Ahead of Time. Songs by Reichman are also featured in the animated film The Year Of The Fish. Reichman was a 2010 Fellow at the Sundance Institute Documentary Composers Lab.
At Wesleyan University, Reichman studied with Alvin Lucier and Anthony Braxton, taking up the accordion at Braxton’s behest. At age 19, Reichman participated in his first recording session for Braxton. His work with Braxton would eventually include many concert performances in duo, small group, and large ensemble settings, as well as recording on eight of Braxton’s albums, including Duo (Leipzig) 1993, and the earliest recordings of Braxton’s Ghost Trance Music. He also assisted Braxton in the production of his monumental opera Trillium M.
After moving to New York, Reichman became involved in many musical genres: jazz, with Ben Perowsky and Chris Speed, improvisation, with Marc Ribot, Anthony Coleman, and Eugene Chadbourne, Jewish music, with David Krakauer and Roberto Rodriguez, alternative country, with Sue Garner and Laura Cantrell, and rock and roll, with Elysian Fields, Paul Simon, Sam Phillips, and Shivaree.
Reichman’s early years in New York also included a series of influential music business ventures. In 1995, he founded a legendary concert series at alt.coffee, an East Village, New York, internet café, where he began his over 15-year association with world-renowned composer John Hollenbeck and the Claudia Quintet. Reichman then became the original curator of Tonic, which would grow into one of the world’s major venues for new music and avant-rock.
photo credit - Lisa Rinzler