Jherek Bischoff

What’s New + Upcoming Shows

February 14, 2015 by Rachel | 0 comments

New Year’s resolution: Update blog more often…
Oy! I have been so busy! I am trying! Haha!

Okay, a little update my friends:

I relocated to Los Angeles and finally have a home! It is wonderful.
Since I spoke to you last, I was in Vienna for a month premiering a musical I scored, Johnny Breitwieser. It is still playing at Schauspielhaus, so if you find yourself heading through that fabulous city, go check it out! Here’s a trailer in German with some snippets of my music:

I went out to Tasmania again, and performed all new arrangements, by yours truly, with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra + Amanda Palmer.
While there, I also worked once again with Neil Gaiman on a live reading of his story, The Sleeper and the Spindle, which I sound-tracked live with a string quartet. It was wild.

A couple of weeks ago, I went into the studio and worked once again with the band Yacht on a song. I did a fun string arrangement for one of their new tunes. It’s going to be rad.

A billion other things too, but I am super excited to be extremely close to finishing up my record Cistern. I am about 2 weeks away from finishing it, I think. I am really happy with how it’s turning out and can’t wait for you to hear it.

I have some performances in the coming months; please come say hi!

FEB 15
I co-curated this event and am performing new work! Info and tickets HERE

FEB 24
I will be performing a set of my own music, with string quartet, clarinet and percussion. Also appearing: Brother, Sister & Tim Carr. Info and tickets HERE

MAR 7 & 9
This is a performance with Robert Forster of the Go-Betweens, Zephyr String Quartet and me on bass. Info and tickets HERE
*I will also be doing a cooking demo while there (!?!)

MAR 23
Featuring a flurry of some of the most talented people on earth, I’ll be performing a song with Amanda Palmer. Info and tickets HERE

There are more gigs in the works and I will be letting y’all know soon!

I hope to see you around!

All the best


November 1, 2014 by Rachel | 0 comments

Ahoy, from Melbourne!

We just wrapped up this epic Australian tour with Missy Higgins and I am now preparing to fly out to Vienna for the next month (Details below)!


The Kickstarter has passed its goal! So awesome! Thank you to everyone who has helped make this happen! Since we still have a few days left to go, our new stretch goal is $20,000. If we reach the stretch goal, all folks who have contributed $25 or more to the campaign will receive a special exclusive digital download EP of improvisations & developmental material from the “Cistern” sessions. The EP will be a window into my creative process. It will be between 20-30 minutes in length and will only be available to Kickstarter backers, and possibly part of the retail vinyl package when the album is released. No Spotify, iTunes, Bandcamp, nor any other digital storefront. And note, anyone who has contributed less than $25 can still increase their contribution to get the EP. All contributions above and beyond the original goal will be used to directly fund and promote “Cistern”.

There are still a bunch of one time only rewards available including: an original song written and recorded just for you, an album credit printed in the liner notes, classically stylish bow ties (with optional Skype tying lessons), a classic composer’s wig – in the style of powder wigs worn by classic composers for centuries, and digital and printed sheet music for “Cistern”. I am also offering string quartet and orchestral arrangements for your (or a friend or family member’s) original song. Don’t forget about the private Skype lessons for ukulele, bass guitar and arranging (all skill levels are welcomed!).
JB celebration

If you’ve already contributed to the campaign: thank you so much for making this album possible! If you haven’t: please check it out. If you have any friends or family who might be interested in supporting: please help spread the word! All of your support has been overwhelming, and I am extremely excited to share “Cistern” with you.


In other news: I’ve scored my first musical! I am so excited to announce my collaboration with Schauspielhaus in Vienna, on a new musical called “Johnny Breitweiser.” I am headed out to Vienna for a few weeks of rehearsals, before the premiere Nov 28. It will run for a couple of months, so if you find yourself in that part of the world, please go see it! I will be in attendance for the first couple of shows, so come down and say “hello!”. For more details, go here.

I have also written a new piece for Black Mountain Songs at BAM (Brooklyn), Nov 20-23. The show features the Brooklyn Youth Chorus and a ton of fantastic composers including: Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhly, Richard Reed Parry, Caroline Shaw and more! Sadly, I will be in Vienna, so will not be in attendance, but you should go and tell me all about it! More details here.

As always, thank you for your continued support! I hope to see you at a future performance somewhere around the globe!


‘Cistern’ Kickstarter Campaign + Australian Tour Dates

September 22, 2014 by Rachel | Comments Off on ‘Cistern’ Kickstarter Campaign + Australian Tour Dates

Ahoy from down under!
I hope you are all doing well! I have been really busy and happy, and I have some super exciting announcements!
Banner for Kickstarter Campaign
First of all, I am making a new record!!! The record is called Cistern and is a collection of ambient orchestral music I wrote after spending some time in an underground, 2-million gallon, empty water tank with an insanely long reverb. I have played many of these songs all over the world, and after many of you asked where you could purchase the music, I realized it needed to be recorded.
In order to bring this record to life, I have launched a Kickstarter campaign, and could really use your help and support. For the recording, I am collaborating with the wonderful ensemble Contemporaneous from NYC. I am very excited about the music, and can’t wait to put it out into the world. I am hoping you will feel the same way, too!
For more information about this project and how to support it, please swing by my Kickstarter page and also check out the different rewards I have up for grabs! New and older music, as well as some rare and unique offerings…

Also, I am back in Melbourne, Australia, embarking on a month and a half long tour of Australia with my pal Missy Higgins.
Missy Higgins 'Oz' Album Cover
Earlier this year, I co-produced Missy’s new record Oz, which came out Sept. 19th. The record is all covers of Australian artists. I am extremely proud of the record and Missy was an absolute dream to work with. I was able to work in some super lush string and horn arrangements as well as some fun rocking tunes. Here is the video for my personal fave, ‘Shark Fin Blues':

For this tour, I will be opening all of the shows, as well as playing bass in Missy’s band. For some shows I will be playing a solo set, while for others, I will be playing with a string quartet. We are going to be playing shows all over Australia, so if you are here, or may find yourself here during the tour, please join us for what are sure to be some lovely nights of music-making. If you have any friends in Australia, whom you think might enjoy the music, I would appreciate your help spreading the word!
Visit my LIVE page for a list of shows!

Lastly, I recently moved to Los Angeles. I love it there… So much good vegan food! So many cute dogs. So many sunny days. That’s all, just love it and thought I would share!

All the best to you, and thank you for your continued support.
Jherek Bischoff

Ladies and Gentlemen of Seattle…

August 13, 2014 by Rachel | Comments Off on Ladies and Gentlemen of Seattle…


I will be performing at Moore Theatre on Sept 4th with a chamber ensemble and special guest singers including:
Craig Wedren (Shudder To Think),
Carey Mercer (Frog Eyes, Swan Lake (band)),
& Zac Pennington (Parenthetical Girls) performing Crying, a new theatrical work.
More TBA!

In past shows, I have often utilized very large ensembles. For this show, I wanted to showcase the incredible individuals that have been the absolute core to my music-making and have inspired me to be a composer. I have also recently been performing a lot more with chamber ensembles and it has excited me a great deal to see and hear the personalities of each player so well.
Instrumentation will be –

Paris Hurley – Violin
Alina To – Violin
Alex Guy – Viola
Maria Scherer Wilson – Cello
Scott Teske – Upright Bass
Beth Fleenor – Clarinet/Bass Clarinet
Korum Bischoff – Percussion
and I will be playing a variety of instruments as well.

It is going to be a really wonderful evening of music.
Please spread the word and join us!

Kronos at 40

March 13, 2014 by Rachel | Comments Off on Kronos at 40

Kronos at 40 poster

When I got an email from David Harrington of Kronos Quartet, my heart leapt out of my chest. No kidding. I was grabbing a coffee early morning after what at the time was my biggest show and musical achievement yet and I was so high on adrenaline I could not sleep. That show was at Ecstatic Music Festival in NYC 2012. The email said that he had listened to the live stream of the show and he was interested in meeting with me. My adrenaline plus coffee plus this news turned into nearly having a panic attack because my body and mind was simply not used to this much incredible news and energy! I had been a fan for many years and as with a lot of people, Kronos was one of a small hand full of music makers that exposed me to classical music in the first place.

It took a while to finally get to be in the same room with David as both or our schedules were/are insane. We finally found time in Adelaide at Adelaide Music Festival where we were both performing. We went out for coffee and I was totally blown away by his energy. He was super humble and had the most amazing stories about hanging with Piazzolla and Bernstein… Crazy!

Eventually we were able to find an opportunity for me to write a piece for them that is named A Semiperfect Number. They are celebrating their 40th (!) anniversary this year and to kick it off they did a week of shows at Lincoln Center Out Of Doors. Lincoln Center commissioned the work and we played it at the festival back in July 2013.

Writing for Kronos is intimidating to say the least. To have the opportunity to write for a group that could pull off ANYTHING that you put in front of them is a confusing (to me anyways) proposition. My music to be frank is generally on the easier side of things and I also write more in pop song form than most composers as I come from a more rock background than anything else. It is very tempting to write something overly notey for Kronos Quartet…  I made 2 conscious decisions. One was to simply write from the heart, not the brain. Two was to try to give each player an equal presence because they all are such expressive players, but seriously, it was very tempting to write something really far out and crazy with 10 billion notes.

Now we get to the “love letter” part of this. Rehearsing this piece for the first time with the quartet was one of the most inspiring musical moments of my life. Kronos Quartet has been an ensemble for 40 years and they blew me away with their focus, love, attention to detail and desire to make the best music they could. It is a truly collaborative effort. After becoming a household name (of cool households anyways!), being so successful and traveling the world performing so prolifically, it could be easy for an artist/band/performer to fall into a  “phoning it in” mentality. Kronos was the exact opposite! They broke down my piece bar by bar and would continue to experiment with ways to play each part until we would find something that we all felt great about, and then we would try to take it one step even further! Sometimes that extra step was a big breakthrough, and many times we would all say, no… lets go back to the other way. It was always worth giving it a try and each member had great input. Seeing them take the time and really go for it full on AFTER 40 YEARS, is just amazing. It has inspired me to keep pushing forward and to continue to push my own boundaries. To not stop when things sound good without at least trying to make it sound even better.  I hope that I have as much energy and presence in my music making 25 years from now, and if I do, Kronos will absolutely be to thank.

Thank you to the entire beautiful Kronos family. You are all amazing.

I will be performing with Kronos Quartet at Carnegie Hall on March 28th. Come celebrate with us!