Hiroe Sekine's long-awaited first album is now available! Her 20 years of playing experience and all her energy and talent were put into her piano plays, arrangements, and her own compositions in this CD. Her brilliant piano is accompanied by LA's such top-notch musicans as Peter Erskine (drums), Tony Dumas (bass), Bob Sheppard (soprano and tenor saxohones) et al, and the album was produced by Russell Ferrante, the keyboardist/arranger/composer of the two-time Grammy award winner group, Yellowjackets. Hiroe delivers jazz standards and her original compositions in sextet, quartet, and trio settings, in addition to her solo piano. Her musical approach is refreshing, modern, and sophisticated.
-- “On the first time out, Sekine seems to do everything right: performance, group interplay, composition and creative arrangements of standards.” – Pico, All About Jazz The Best of 2010, Part 4: Mainstream and Modern Jazz
--"This disc mixes the pulse of jazz with the ambience of a Japanese garden to utmost perfection." --George W. Harris, Jazzweekly.com
--“This is how you put new legs on familiar material. Fantastic recording.” – Jae Sinnett, WHRV-FM
--“A fresh, new voice on the piano!” – Brad Stone, KSJS-FM
--“Very nice, indeed!” – Will Kinnally, Music Choice
-- "A fresh, new voice on the piano!" -- KSJS-FM, San Jose
-- “Hiroe takes timeless material and takes it to a new musical dimension." -- WICU-FM, Indianapolis
-- “She is not only a brilliant pianist (as evidenced by her extended solo on "All The Things You Are"), she is also a wonderfully original arranger.” -- Rochester City Newspaper
-- “Her compositions are beautifully arranged little pieces the likes of which you don't hear every day.” -- LA Weekly
-- “Her original compositions display a sense of originality and maturity associated with artists well beyond her age.” -- Gary Vercelli, Capital Public Radio, Sacramento
--“Ms. Sekine chooses her materials well, arranging and elasticizing them with class to spare… Her own compositions are as indelibly imbued as the materials she interprets.” – Mark Tucker, F.A.M.E.
-- “Her arrangements are fresh and invigorating…. Four original compositions complete this debut recording from a pianist who brings both depth and musical color to her artistic canvas.” – Jazz Society of Oregon
-- “In a psychic gulf that resides somewhere post-"Kind of Blue" and post-Weather Report", this straight ahead meets fusion session delivers the goods in such quantity that failing smooth jazz stations should cast an ear in this direction. A sterling set that doesn't let you down.” –– Midwest Record
-- “During my first listen of Hiroe Sekine’s debut album A-mé, I found myself stopped in the middle of the street…. This is not your everyday ‘All The Things You Are.’ This is different. This is what it means to put a new spin on an old tune….. Hiroe’s arrangements and own compositions are impeccably done with the originality of the arrangement to Gigi Gryce’s ‘Minority,’ to the album's closer. ‘Sand-Smog’ is a fantastic, up-tempo jaunt featuring everyone in the band. However, the one track I keep coming back to over and over again is her solo piano take on Cole Porter’s ‘Every Time We Say Good-Bye.’ Stripped down and to-the-point, beautiful music always speaks for itself and this is no exception. A-mé is a solid album that will be on my playlist for some time to come.”-- Aaron Craven, JazzReview.com