"Tracy Silverman played as if he believed in every note and there was a whooping standing ovation." --Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News
9/29/2007 9:46:42 AM - Lauded by the BBC as “the greatest living exponent of the electric violin”, Juilliard graduate Tracy Silverman has redefined the instrument with his instantly recognizable trademark sound. His groundbreaking work with the 6-string electric violin has forever transformed violin playing, much as Hendrix redefined the electric guitar.

Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John John Adams’ electric violin concerto The Dharma at Big Sur, written expressly for Silverman, ("the closest thing to a genuine collaboration I've ever done with a performer"--John Adams,) single-handedly legitimized the electric violin in 2003. Recorded by Silverman on Nonesuch Records with the BBC Symphony, he has performed it at New York’s Lincoln Center, Los Angeles’ Walt Disney Concert Hall, Royal Albert Hall in London, Palais des Beaux Artes in Brussels and the Cabrillo Festival, among others. In the liner notes, Adams writes, ”Tracy has developed his own unique style of violin playing--a marvel of expressiveness.” At the premier, Mark Swed of the LA Times raved, “Inspiring. Silverman is in a class of his own.” The Chicago Tribune’s John von Rhein wrote of Silverman’s “blazing virtuosity. You will be astonished that anybody can play a fiddle like that.”

Silverman has recorded with a virtual who’s who of the new music, jazz and rock world. As first violinist with the innovative Turtle Island String Quartet, Silverman toured internationally and established a long-standing relationship with Windham Hill Records. His 1999 self-produced release, Trip to the Sun has become a cult favorite which Billboard Magazine heralded as "the most adventurous Windham Hill album ever." He has produced several albums for the label and appears on dozens of Windham Hill Collections. Silverman’s “Electric Violin Concerto” has been described by the Wichita Eagle as "the ideal piece for today’s symphony”, and has been choreographed in it’s entirety by Henrique Rodovalho in a fully mounted production with the Bale Teatro Guaira in Brazil.

Silverman has recorded and performed with John Adams, Terry Riley, Zakir Hussain, Daniel Bernard Roumain, Jim Brickman, Beth Nielsen Chapman, Guster, Big and Rich, Rachel Barton Pine, Tuck and Patty, Linda Ronstadt, Eliot Fisk, Billy Taylor, Bob Geldof, and as a soloist with major orchestras, including the Detroit Symphony conducted by Neemi Jarvi, the LA Philharmonic under Esa-Pekka Salonen, with conductors Marin Alsop, Kent Negano and many others.

An international touring artist, Tracy has performed at major concert venues from Sao Paulo to Vienna, from Carnegie Hall to the Hollywood Bowl. In 1999 he was awarded Artist in Residence status by the city of Hamburg, Germany and is a frequent concert attraction in Brazil. The Rhein Zeitung wrote "technically brilliant to the fingertips, but overthrowing all the usual preconceived ideas". The London Times raved, “His deep engagement with the music coursed through his strong, supple virtuosity."

Silverman produced and performs on Jim Brickman’s hit CD’s "Simple Things", "Lovesongs and Lullabies", “Escape” and “Homecoming” and on all 3 of Jim’s popular TV Specials. His many appearances on national radio and television include NPR's “Performance Today”, MPR's “St. Paul Sunday”, “A Prarie Home Companion” and was featured as a violinist and record producer on “CBS News Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood”. He has taught at Macalester College in St. Paul, and at the MacPhail Center for the Arts in Minneapolis and regularly gives workshops all over the world, including the Stanford Jazz Workshop, Jazz in July at Amherst, Oberlin Conservatory and many others. Silverman has long been a favorite instructor at Mark O’Connor’s annual fiddle camp. He currently holds a teaching position at Belmont University in his home of Nashville, TN, where he teaches exclusively jazz and rock violin.

Tracy is currently touring internationally with his solo concerts, with his rock band, “Eclectica”, as a member of the Terry Riley Trio, The Gyan Riley Trio featuring Zakir Hussain, The Great Big Piano Trio with Philip Aaberg and Eugene Friesen and with the Quarteto Sao Paulo in Brazil.

Dharma review--LA Times
"Silverman is in a class of his own"

-- Mark Swed, LA TImes
Dharma CD Review--Chicago Tribune
"What informs almost every bar of the work is the blazing virtuosity of Tracy Silverman, playing a six-string electric violin. Listen to Silverman flinging seagull-like spirals and caws over Adams' big and busy symphonic apparatus in the ecstatic finale and you will be astonished that anybody can play the fiddle like that."

-- John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune
Dharma CD review--NY Times
"Tracy Silverman's 6-string instrument wails and coos with considerable subtlety in this very desirable recording."

-- --Bernard Holland, NY Times
Dharma CD Review--Tennessean
“The Dharma at Big Sur serves as a breathtaking showcase for Silverman’s dazzling instrumental prowess. A transcendent performance that casts aside traditional notions of what classical music should sound like."

-- —Jonathan Marx, The Tennessean, Dec 17, 2006
BBC Radio
The greatest living exponent of the electric violin.

-- --BBC Radio
Dharma Review: The Times (London)
Above all, a new solo language, forged expressly for the classically trained jazz electric violinist Tracy Silverman. His deep engagement with the Asian-influenced music coursed through his strong, supple virtuosity.

-- --Hilary Finch, The Times, (London) Tuesday, August 24, 2004
"Tracy Silverman combines a classical technical assurance with a jazzer's style and a rocker's dynamism. For many this could be an ideal mix of classic depth with commercial immediacy."

Dharma with the Winnipeg Symphony
“Silverman plays it with the conviction born of a true understanding of the composer’s intentions.”

-- --Holly Harris, Winnipeg Free Press, Dec 4, 2006
Dharma--New York Times
The Dharma at Big Sur is a de facto concerto for electric violin and orchestra. The solo part, played with fleet agility and tangy expressivity by Tracy Silverman, deftly evokes Appalachian fiddle music, an Indian sitar and wistful jazz riffs with wailing hints of Jimi Hendrix.

-- --Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times
The Evening Standard

-- -- Stephen Pettitt, The Evening Standard, (London) Monday, August 23, 2004
Dharma Review: The Guardian
A showcase for the startling virtuosity of jazz electric violinist Tracy Silverman.

-- -- Andrew Clements, The Guardian, (London) Tuesday, August 24, 2004
Dharma: Dallas Morning News
Tracy Silverman played as if he believed in every note and there was a whooping standing ovation.

-- --Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News
Dharma Review: LA Times
Dharma is a concerto for electric violin. That violin, as Tracy Silverman miraculously plays it, evokes Jimi Hendrix's wailing electric guitar and Ravi Shankar's astral sitar when it is not suggesting a mellow cello or even a plain old violin. And Silverman, in an inspiring display of dharmic duty, has astonishingly memorized difficult music. Every detail is notated. But his performance Thursday, during which he wandered around the stage, even executing a few slow whirling dervish twirls while playing, sounded free (if anything but easy) and improvised.

-- --Mark Swed, LA Times, May 27, 2005
Variety Review
"As soloist on an electronically adapted, six-string violin, Tracy Silverman produced a seemingly endless, rhapsodic thread of melody, his instrument spanning the range from deepest cello to ecstatic violin."

-- --Alan Rich, Variety
Dharma Review: Newsday
A winsome fellow with Kenny G curls and an endearingly blissed-out air, soloist Tracy Silverman drew from his souped-up fiddle ecstatic shrieks, soulful growls, and swoops and slides of phosphorescent radiance.

-- --Marion Lignana Rosenberg, Newsday, June 8, 2005
Silverman walks around the stage, breaking the box classical cats stand in. Finally he reaches up way high and we get a big moment. Silverman turns a circle. The music gets louder and louder. The violin rushes to the stratosphere. We get arpeggios and flying fingers. We've taken off. Adams turns on the electricity and lets Silverman blow above the orchestra playing full blast. With a rush and a flourish it's over. The audience loves it. So do I. It's his best piece in years.

-- --David Salvage Sequenza21, June 6, 2005
Billboard review
"'Trip to the Sun' may be the most adventurous Windham Hill album ever. He duets with minimalist pioneer Terry Riley on two spiraling improvisations for muted piano and viola, and he turns Jimi Hendrix's "1983...(A Merman I Should Turn To Be)" into a dreamy chamber-dub soundscape. Silverman also creates several overdubbed solos that avoid the cliches of the genre. "Improvisation with Overdubs" is a meditative-yet-searing work, while "Fugue En Groove" is a nice piece of baroque electronica."

-- --John Diliburto, Billboard
New Jersey Star-Ledger
Adams wrote the 40-minute piece for a veteran of Riley's ensemble, electric violinist Tracy Silverman, who proved to be an ideal exponent of its raga-inflected arabesques. With his long, curly mane and embroidered maroon shirt, Silverman's look matched the music, as did his body language -- he spun around in circles during one swirling passage. His solo part was like endless aria, trailing off only to build up again; his searing slurs and bends were deeply expressive.

-- --Bradley Bambarger, New Jersey Star-Ledger, June 7, 2005
LA Weekly
Tracy Silverman, the soloist who belongs among the inspirers, plays a six-string electronic violin into a microphone and into processing circuitry; it gives him the remarkable ability to carry a lyric line all the way from the highest notes of a normal violin down into cello territory. 'I planned Dharma as a piece about ambiance,' says Adams, 'and then in addition it became a violin concerto. That happened when I discovered the phenomenal Tracy Silverman, who will play the solo part on his six-string electric violin.

-- --Alan Rich, LA Weekly
The New Yorker
Tracy Silverman wove an endless freewheeling melody that at times resembled a Jimi Hendrix solo.

-- --Alex Ross, The New Yorker Magazine
San Jose Mercury News
Silverman is a remarkable performer, skillfully building the excitement of the piece, written especially for his six-string electric instrument. He wears it strapped around neck and shoulders, coaxing from it all sorts of sliding, moaning, plangent tones.
Several years ago, Adams saw Silverman perform at Yoshi's, the Oakland jazz club, and decided to write the new work for him. Silverman, a former prodigy and a Juilliard graduate, had stepped outside the ``controlled realm'' of Western classical music, Adams said Saturday, and looked to other sources: Indian ragas, Hendrix, jazz. In writing ``Dharma,'' Adams explained to the audience, he hoped to evoke the spirit of the Beats, particularly of Jack Kerouac in his novel ``Big Sur.'' He saw Silverman as a Kerouac stand-in, an opener of the ``revelatory moment.

-- --Richard Scheinin, San Jose Mercury News, Aug 16, 2004
San Francisco Chronicle
The work's soloist and muse is violinist Tracy Silverman, whose improvisatory classical-jazz fusion, played on an electric six-string instrument of his own devising, piqued Adams' interest. It's easy to see why; the sounds he produces, with their bent notes and sinuous phrases, are both piercing and poignant

-- --Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle
The Wall Street Journal
The star turn of the evening was John Adams's new "The Dharma at Big Sur," a heartbreakingly beautiful work for electric fiddler (Tracy Silverman) and full orchestra, in which high, piercing folk sounds from East and West were wrapped in the richness of the classic symphonic tradition by a composer who understands and loves them all.

-- --David Littlejohn, The Wall Street Journal
Chicago Tribune
Beneath its oh-so-California title, the Adams work also is a concerto, this one tailored to the special talents of Tracy Silverman, he of the wild curls and even wilder electric violin. Silverman soared and scraped up a storm of bent-pitch arabesques over a huge orchestra that included two keyboard samplers, prerecorded tape and computer-controlled sound system.

-- --John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune
Philadelphia Inquirer
Silverman is stretching out in yet another direction, in a harder rock direction, with stops in classical, jazz and electronica

-- --Philadelphia Inquirer
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Groovy electric violin soloist Tracy Silverman played just-intonated music that sounded like Music of the Spheres.

-- --Pierre Ruhe, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Seattle Times
A surprisingly virtuoso electric-violin solo by Tracy Silverman that rose in obbligato over the sustained orchestral chords.

-- --Melinda Bargeen, Seattle Times
Main Echo
...towards the end of the evening, Silverman showed that he can do more than just play brilliant violin. With his powerful voice he sang "Little Wing" by Jimi Hendrix. When you have experienced the pyrotechnics of sound, when you have seen it, with all the ways and means of tone that can be unlocked from his various violins, when you can feel the joie de vivre and pleasure which lies in both the electric and acoustic pieces, then you can, spurred on by the calls for "encore, encore" say, "More courage to new forms of music!

-- --Main Echo
Nurnburger Zeitung
...his violin luminated in rainbow colors and hung easily across the shoulders. First there is some hand-clapping fun with the audience, then the young star from America grabs forcefully into the strings and the electric fiddle mutates easily into a rock guitar. Like Jon Bon Jovi, Silverman has soothing ballads, as in his version of George Gershwin's "But Not For Me", that would easily fit on a rock CD. Music, for Tracy Silverman, is a wide field indeed.

-- --Nurnburger Zeitung
Weser Kurier
...Silverman created the whole of the performance by reorganizing sections of songs. The phenomenal violinist has worked with Leonard Bernstein, Terry Riley, Billy Taylor and Michael Bolton among others. All these different influences had a very productive effect on his music. It breaks out of the usual structures and catagories.

-- --Weser Kurier
Suddeutsche Zeitung
...Miracle-violinist Tracy Silverman restrained himself nobly until he played the Hendrix homage, "Little Wing", and it almost seemed as if he had exchanged his violin for a guitar

-- --Suddeutsche Zeitung
Main Echo 2
...And when there is such a good musical foundation carrying such connoiseurship for making music, the difficulty of changing between acoustic and electric music dissappears...It was music straight from life, full of energie, charm and wit.

-- --Main Echo
Press Reviews
Credits and Highlights
Complete Discography
Contact Tracy by emailing him at: tracy@tracysilverman.com

For booking please contact:
Steven M. Gates
(914) 309-1560
470 Halstead Ave #3G
Harrison NY 10528
Image: Dharma Cover
Cover art for The Dharma at Big Sur, released by Nonesuch Records
Text: Dharma Press Release
Nonesuch Records press release announcing the release of "The Dharma at Big Sur", Tracy Silverman, soloist with the BBC Symphony, John Adams, conductor.
Text: Tracy Silverman Bio
full bio--1 page
Text: Tracy Silverman Bio: Long Paragraph
Text: Tracy Silverman Bio: Short Paragraph
Text: Discography
complete discography
Image: Playing Dharma - 300 dpi
Image: Singing Head Shot - 300 dpi
Image: Color Full Shot 2 - 300 dpi
Image: Acoustic - 300 dpi
Image: Black & White Headshot - 300 dpi
Image: Color Headshot - 300 dpi
Image: I'd Rather Be Dreaming Cover
Text: The Dharma At Big Sur Performance History
Text: The Dharma at Big Sur Program Notes
Text: The Dharma at Big Sur Tech Rider
Text: Silverman Violin Concerto Performance History
Text: Silverman Violin Concerto Program Notes
Text: Silverman Violin Concerto Tech Rider