Matt Schiff's versatile and straight-ahead jazz style is known for its lyrical and melodic richness, its penchant for swing, and a bluesy undercurrent that harkens back to his Chicago roots. From an early age he listened to and played a wide variety of music from classical to folk, pop, rock, country, blues, and particularly jazz. Influences include Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass, Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley, John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Oscar Peterson, and McCoy Tyner. Initially, Matt studied at the Jack Ceccini Studios in Chicago, and subsequently with Henry Wolking at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, where he also began his professional playing career. After participating in workshops with drummer Mel Brown and bassist David Friesen, Matt relocated to Portland Oregon in 1977 where he's since developed a reputation as an in-demand soloist, ensemble leader, sensitive accompanist, and teacher/clinician.
Besides numerous appearances at the internationally acclaimed Mt. Hood Festival of Jazz, Matt spent 10 years teaching for Portland’s renowned Jefferson High School music program, and three years teaching and performing extensively in Europe. These travels resulted in the release of his first CD, ‘Matt Schiff and Belgrade Friends’ in '97. His second CD, Matt Schiff ‘Alone’ was released in '07, and his third entitled ‘Sisters’ in '17.
Matt performs regularly with various instrumental ensembles and vocalists around the Pacific Northwest and in Europe. Since February 2013, he is featured as a solo artist every Thursday evening at the Yoshida Riverview Restaurant in Troutdale, OR.
See Pics & Press and Associations pages for more about Matt's career and history.