At a time when jazz has been to the reaches of the musical universe and back, some would say that it's all been played before and we're currently at a point in the cyclical nature of this artform when those lesser talents are merely rewriting the past. This is why innovation and individualism are so rare these days and why David Kikoski stands apart from the scores of pianists/keyboardists as well as composers.
Born in 1961 in Milltown,N.J. ,Dave was part of a musical family and given his first piano lessons at the age of six by his father.In his early teens he began working with jazz and rock groups and won The New Jersey Allstate Jazz Competition. After high school, Kikoski would head to the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston where he earned a bachelor's degree in piano. While in Boston he had a steady trio gig and met Pat Matheny who sat in with Dave's trio. Later( in 1994) they would meet up again and record together on Roy Haynes' cd Te-Vou which also featured Christian McBride and Donald Harrison.
In 1984 , the pianist decided to try his hand in New York where it didn't take long for him to establish himself. Roy Haynes would be the first to give Kikoski a break, leading to a productive association that lasts to this day. Dave's first professional recording session in 1986 was Randy Brecker's In the Idiom and featured him in great company with Joe Henderson,Ron Carter, and Al Foster. During his first few years on the New York scene the pianist networked with other musicians leading to a wealth or recording opportunities and touring the world with Roy Haynes, Randy Brecker, Bob Berg ,Red Rodney and many others.