Pianist/composer Hiromi mesmerized the jazz community with her 2003 Telarc debut, Another Mind. The buzz started by her debut album spread all the way back to her native Japan, where Another Mind shipped gold (100,000 units) and won the Recording Industry Association of Japan's (RIAJ) Jazz Album of the Year Award. Hiromi's second release, Brain, followed a year later. Brain received Swing Journal's New Star Award, Jazz Life's Gold Album, HMV Japan's Best Japanese Jazz Album and the Japan Music Pen Club's Japanese Artist Award. When Swing Journal announced the results of its 2005 Readers Poll, Brain won Album of the Year. Hiromi takes it up another notch with her January 2006 release, Spiral.
Born in Shizuoka, Japan, in 1979, Hiromi took her first piano lessons at age six. She learned from her earliest teacher to tap into the intuitive as well as the technical aspects of music.
Her energy was always so high, and she was so emotional, Hiromi says of her first piano teacher. When she wanted me to play with a certain kind of dynamics, she wouldn't say it with technical terms. If the piece was something passionate, she would say, 'Play red.' Or if it was something mellow, she would say, 'Play blue.' I could really play from my heart that way, and not just from my ears.