Guitarist Shachar Elnatan (22) is one of the leading and unique young voices of the flourishing young jazz scene in Israel. To date he has collaborated with many musicians worldwide including greats such as: Avishai Cohen, Ravi Coltrane, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Kellylee Evans, Eli Degibri and many more.
Born in Jerusalem, Israel (1993) to a half Israeli and half American family of musicians, he began playing the guitar, taught by his father, from the age of six. His first and main musical influences came from the family home where he discovered great Jazz and Rock records through his father and was exposed to American Folk music through his mother, who plays the fiddle and has a country music band.
He continued his musical studies at the Music Academy High School in Jerusalem where he received classical training and education. Whilst being raised in Jerusalem and living for some time in Jaffa (Tel Aviv), Shachar was surrounded by Middle Eastern and Arabic music which has also strongly influenced his musical vision. During High School, Shachar had been working and performed with many local groups and began to compose his own music, showcasing the wide range of influences he had absorbed during his years.
At the age of 17 he decided to take some time away from school and travelled to New York to study with great musicians such as; Peter Bernstein, Lage Lund, Gilad Hekselman and Ari Hoenig. Shachar was the winner of the Israeli-American Cultural Foundation (IACF) from 2006-2013. In late 2012 Shachar won the ‘Rimon’s Music School Jazz Competition’ and was invited to perform and participate at the International Association of Schools of Jazz (IASJ) conference in Graz, Austria.
After time performing around the world with various musicians, Shachar formed his own band and in 2014, was approached by the international bassist and composer, Avishai Cohen, to record on a compilation album Cohen produced, titled “All Original” (Razdaz Recordz, 2014). The album was to capture and record some of the best young Israeli Jazz musicians who Cohen thought were an important part of the growing music scene there. Shachar’s strong musical statement and unique compositions has led to his debut album titled, ‘One World’, to be released in Mid-2016 with Razdaz Recordz.
On ‘One World’, Shachar gets to share his musical journey as a jazz musician growing up in Israel and currently living in New York. Shachar leads a brilliant group of musicians, including: Gadi Lehavi (piano), Avri Borochov (bass), Ofri Nehemya (drums), and special guests; Avishai Cohen on bass, (who co-produces the album and also contributes one of his own compositions), Daniel Dor (drums) and Itay Morchi (drums).