Debbie Poryes

The sophistication and warm power of Debbie Poryes’s music is hard to overstate. Her highly original compositions are influenced by jazz from bebop to post-bop to modern times, as well as by 20th-century classical music and free jazz. Her voicings, melodies and touch are exquisite. Her sense of time and swing are deeply felt, and yet she can also be light hearted.

“Poryes is an inventive pianist, taking familiar standards and setting them slightly askew to re-examine them. Poryes’s originals are varied in their moods and effects, serene... powerful... admirable.” Cadence Magazine

“Debbie Poryes and her infectious gifts as an abundantly creative jazz pianist- composer-arranger points out her distinctive identity among the huge crowd of excellent pianists. Easily perceptible is her genuine, spirited exuberance for the music, the piano, and the open interaction with her bandmates — a standout quality of her engagingly personal and musical personality. Impressive, too, is how her swinging joyousness articulates every note she plays.” Herb Wong, jazz critic

Born in Santa Monica, California, Debbie found herself at the piano when she was five, practicing everything from Chopin to show tunes. Playing led to fascination with musical theory and structure, then jazz standards, composing, and improvising. Hearing Monk and Miles as a teenager, she fell in love with their music and decided to become a jazz pianist. A student on full scholarship at the University of California at Berkeley, she decided to stop going to school so that she could be a full-time professional jazz musician. At twenty, her first regular paying gig lasted a year at a Berkeley restaurant, playing five nights a week from 5 p.m. to midnight.

Read more
Album Reviews
Read more articles
RADIO ACCOLADES:
  • #1 on the jazz !Earshot chart Oct 23, 2007
  • #39 on CMJ Jazz Chart, issue #Issue #1033
Les French, WMEB-Orono, ME
Debbie Poryes is a fresh voice in jazz, playing piano in a clean, unadorned style without pretention and with modern arrangements. The music pays homage to jazz' past while having a pop sensibility, breathing fresh air into these well-traveled standards.

Bob Collins, WRHU
This CD has stellar musicianship and imaginative styling of great standards and original compositions. First rate!

Peter Kuller, Radio Adelaide 101.5fm
Certainly a new voice to jazz piano with contemporary & mainstream arrangements to well known standards and her own compositions

Read more

Photos (4)

Discography

Two and Fro

Two and Fro

OA2 Records
2011

buy
Catch Your Breath

Catch Your Breath

OA2 Records
2010

buy
A Song in Jazz

A Song in Jazz

Self Produced
2007

buy
Trio

Trio

Stunt Records
1984

buy
You Bet I Do

You Bet I Do

Debbie Poryes
Two & Fro

Catch Your Breath

Catch Your Breath

Debbie Poryes
Catch Your Breath

Watch

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.