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Eli: Bio

Eli (pronounced EL ee)

Eight year old Eli, the son of a church organist, was picking out melodies on the family piano and was quickly sent for lessons with the woman up the street that gave piano lessons. One teacher followed another for a few years, but classical studies didn’t really interest him. At twelve, the neighborhood kids were forming bands. Eli was recruited, and continued through high school, but there was no “method” for learning to play keyboard in a band like there was for drummers and guitarists. So began the quest for knowledge.
After high school, he entered Temple University as a composition major. The fun of covering hit tunes had morphed into the desire to express his own thoughts and individuality in original compositions. It was in college that Eli was exposed to jazz. Fusion jazz was the popular form of the day, and provided everything to challenge and satisfy the young musician searching to explore harmony and melody, as well as the technology that was making vast changes in the “soundscape” of music at the time. Exploring jazz not only, gave Eli a better understanding of how harmony was applied to popular music, but a keyboard tradition that could be studied and applied to the music he’d been making. All that was needed was the proper teacher. Enter Jimmy Amadie.
Eli spent his first three college years researching teachers by discussing them with every student he spoke to. Although there were many jazz instructors in the Philadelphia area (New York was also considered) Jimmy was the obvious choice. His method was well planned, and instilled a complete understanding of modern harmony before moving on to improvisation. Best of all, it was aimed directly at the piano. Beginning in senior year, Eli studied with Jim for eight years, and became proficient in harmony and improvisation, which are also a large part of his composing.
Making a living as a musician is no easy task. All through college, Eli worked in lounge bands. After graduation he continued as a full timer all the while intent on composing. After a while it became clear that to express himself, he would have to go it alone. “Eli” the solo act was born. Armed with keyboard technology and a soulful voice he began working the Philly area by himself, honing his skills as a singer, player and performer.
Computers are a godsend to the independent musician. It’s no longer necessary to assemble musicians in a recording studio with ideas mapped out on paper and hope that the players can nail down the concept before the clock runs out. These days, when not performing, Eli’s time is spent at the computer churning out music for a variety of projects including: Solo vocal projects, Contemporary Jazz for “Deez Guyz”, and music for film and TV.