Yoron Israel

Assistant Chair
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"Drummers don't play an instrument where we're consistently called upon to play pyrotechnics and get paid for it. We have to blend with other musicians around us and make them feel good. So one of the things I emphasize in my teaching is sound and touch, which is very subtle and somewhat of a lost art in a lot of ways. But it's so important in the real world because you have to be able to play any given room, whether it's a tiny club or a festival amphitheatre. And your touch and your sound has everything to do with your ability to blend with others."

"I am a student myself of the music and of this instrument I play. I'm sure that will never change as long as I live. What I get from day to day in working with students actually teaches and inspires me in terms of my own personal evolution and development."

"Through the years, I've really been blessed to have so many dedicated and outstanding music educators, as well as those who were educator/performers, and even some who were strictly performers, but who I learned from. My involvement here at Berklee is an act of continuing those legacies."

Career Highlights

  • B.M., Roosevelt University
  • M.M., Rutgers University
  • Drummer, percussionist, vibraphonist, and composer
  • Bandleader of the groups High Standards, Connection, and Organic
  • Currently performs internationally with David Fathead Newman, Jay Hoggard, and Bill Mays
  • Performed extensively and recorded over 100 recordings with such renowned artists as Sonny Rollins, Horace Silver, Ahmad Jamal, Abbey Lincoln, Art Farmer, Tony Bennett, Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, James Williams, Joe Lovano, Tom Harrell, Roy Hargrove, Shirley Caesar, and the Chicago Civic Orchestra
  • Recordings as a leader include Basic Traneing (Ronja Music); Chicago (Double Time Records), featuring Organic; Live at the Blue Note (Half Note); and A Gift for You (Freelance), both featuring Connection
  • Reviewed in publications such as Modern Drummer, Down Beat, Jazz Times, the New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, and the Boston Globe
  • Formerly faculty member of Rutgers University, William Patterson University, and the New School/Mannes College of Music
  • Teaches drum set, general percussion, vibraphone, ensembles, theory, and jazz history
  • Owner and president of the music publishing and production company Ronja Music