About Joel Z
Joel Z is a songwriter who plays piano and sings. His recently released debut record “Down on Jones Street” chronicles his recent years living, working and writing on downtown NYC's Jones Street. The album “cuts to the heart of the human experience, speaking to every lover, dreamer, and drunkard” -Adam Zuber, The Purrvy Turks. His songs "sound like they have always existed" - Burt Lee, Village Raconteur.
Joel grew up in Los Angeles, where his musical upbringing was primarily through 70s and 80s pop radio. In college, he played piano in the Monday Big Band at UC Berkeley Jazz Ensembles. Afterwards, he continued to write songs and play in bands, and worked for several years as a composer for television and film, and as musical director for several LA theater companies. Subsequently, he held a series of non music related positions.
“Down On Jones Street” is Joel's first album of original songs, on which he plays keyboards and sings. The album was recorded and produced by Craig Dreyer at Mighty Toad Studios in Brooklyn, with horn arrangements by Jay Collins. The songs were developed in a series of solo shows and appearances at venues around New York, including The Way Station, The Living Room, Four Faced Liar, Jimmy's No. 43, and especially Caffe Vivaldi, also a Jones Street landmark and a haven for singer-songwriters and musicians of all stripes. The title track to the album pays homage to the open mic scene there. The song is the subject of this music video.
Joel is also the proprietor of Jones Street Wine, a local wine shop, where he curates the wine selection, hosts tastings and occasionally dims the lights, pulls out the keyboard and pretends it’s a piano bar.
Photo by Coco Z. Website cover photo by Chris Cassidy. Album cover photo by Catrina Stella.