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Sam Reider and The Human Hands |
Jazz pianist turned roots musician, Sam Reider is redefining American music on the accordion. Reider, has been featured at Lincoln Center and on NPR, and performed alongside pop stars, jazz and folk musicians ranging from Jon Batiste and Stay Human, Bluegrass mandolin prodigy Sierra Hull to Venezuelan cuatro virtuoso Jorge Glem. For his debut record as bandleader, Too Hot To Sleep, Reider has assembled a “staggeringly virtuosic band” (RnR Magazine) of young acoustic musicians called The Human Hands. Irresistible melodies, fiery improvisation and otherworldly sounds  collide in what Songlines Magazine has dubbed a "mash-up of the the Klezmatics, Quintette du Hot Club de France and the Punch Brothers.”

Featured Audio

Announcing "Too Hot To Sleep" by Sam Reider and the Human Hands

Sam Reider and the Human Hands Live at Folk Alliance - Swamp Dog Hobble

"The Murder" by Sam Reider

"Skeleton Rag" by Sam Reider

"Valley of the Giants" by Sam Reider

Swamp Dog Hobble

Dance of the Djinn - Live with Jorge Glem

Sam Reider is a composer, accordionist, pianist, and singer from Brooklyn, NYC.

Jazz pianist turned roots musician, Sam Reider is redefining American music on the accordion. He’s travelled extensively overseas as a musical ambassador for the United States Department of State, been featured at Lincoln Center and on NPR, and performed alongside pop stars, jazz and folk musicians ranging from Jon Batiste and Stay Human, Bluegrass mandolin prodigy Sierra Hull to Venezuelan cuatro virtuoso Jorge Glem. Reider’s debut record Too Hot To Sleep presents his unique compositional voice alongside an ensemble of top-drawer musical collaborators and compadres called The Human Hands: Alex Hargreaves on violin, Roy Williams on guitar, Eddie Barbash on saxophone, Dominick Leslie on mandolin, and Dave Speranza on bass.

Reider’s debut record Too Hot To Sleep presents his unique compositional voice alongside an ensemble of top-drawer musical collaborators and compadres called The Human Hands.

Reider grew up in San Francisco, the son of a musical theatre composer and klezmer musician. He began performing at a young age, and was interviewed on Marian McPartland’s “Piano Jazz” on NPR when he graduated high school. At Columbia University, he fell in love with American folk music. While writing his senior thesis comparing the songwriting of Woody Guthrie and Ira Gershwin, Sam began studying bluegrass and old-time music, transcribing the fiddle melodies for the accordion and learning to sing the songs.

This set him off on a journey that has taken him from back porches and dive bars to concert halls and major festivals in practically every state in the country. Representing the U.S. Department of State as a musical ambassador, Sam has travelled to China, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Turkey and Azerbaijan, carrying his accordion on his back everywhere he goes and collaborating at every opportunity with international artists.

Now he’s surrounded himself with a crew of some of the most in-demand young acoustic musicians on the scene in Brooklyn. The Human Hands have developed a cultish following and a reputation for mind-bending sets of high-energy, improvised music. 

FolkWest's Saturday Surprise: Sam Reider

"The performance of Too Hot to Sleep was not only an auditory feast, but a visual pleasure as well. These superb musicians passed and entwined complex material, changing tempo with ease. Their performance was scintillating.

I can imagine a wealthy man hiring these performers to woo the woman of his dreams."

Click Here to read the full article

Cynda Green

"The perfect distraction for insomniac bluegrass fans" - Songlines Magazine

"Too Hot To Sleep is simply stunning, one to get utterly lost in." - Northern Sky Magazine

"A staggeringly virtuosic band" - RnR Magazine

“It is always moving to see fellow musicians playing with such passion, thank you Sam Reider!” - Taraf de Haidouks

"He's got rhythm. And for someone his age, plenty of soul, too.” - San Francisco Chronicle

"Dashes of folk influences from around the world are sprinkled into its string band aesthetic.. Reider’s accordion is the unyielding anchor, giving a dose of soulful, raw timelessness, but with a modern crispness and confidence.” - The Bluegrass Situation





3/28/2019 State Theatre - Red Bluff CA
Red Bluff, CA
3/29/2019 Freight and Salvage Coffeehouse
Berkeley, CA
4/23/2019 Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola
New York, NY
4/27/2019 Sunnyside Reformed Church
Sunnyside, NY
5/10/2019 Hopewell Theater
Hopewell, NJ
5/11/2019 Sylvester Manor Educational Farm
Shelter Island, NY
5/12/2019 Towne Crier Cafe
Beacon, NY
5/19/2019 Grace Chorale and Friends
Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church
Brooklyn, NY
6/07/2019 - 6/08/2019 Pagosa Folk n Bluegrass Festival
Pagosa Springs, CO
6/10/2019 - 6/12/2019 Artosphere: Arkansas’ Arts+Nature Festival
Walton Arts Center
Fayetteville, AR
7/07/2019 Middlebury Festival on the Green
Middlebury, VT
7/12/2019 Redwing Roots Music Festival
Mount Solon, VA
7/13/2019 Blue Ridge Music Center
Galax, VA
7/19/2019 American Accordionists Association's Festival 2019
Valley Forge Casino and Resort
King of Prussia , PA
7/28/2019 Woods Hole Houseconcerts
Woods Hole, MA
8/02/2019 Hancock Town Square
Hancock, NY
8/03/2019 Next Stage
Putney, VT
8/06/2019 Concert Happenings in Ridgefield's Parks (CHIRP)
Ridgefield, CT
8/08/2019 Bard SummerScape 2019
The Spiegeltent
Annandale on the Hudson, NY
8/10/2019 The West Kortright Centre
East Meredith, NY
9/27/2019 - 9/28/2019 Ouibache Music Festival
West Lafayette, IN
1/25/2020 CSC January Music Fest.
Lackland Center
Hackettstown, NJ
Sam Reider and Jorge Glem 
Grammy-nominated Venezuelan cuatro virtuoso Jorge Glem teams up with American accordionist/pianist Sam Reider to create a one-of-kind fusion of folk music. With jaw dropping virtuosity and infectious chemistry, these musicians and friends are breaking down all the boundaries between their two continents, languages, and cultures. Jorge and Sam blend Venezuela's driving dance rhythms with American folk music and jazz. 
Sam Reider and Jorge Glem perform as a duo and are available for educational workshops as well as performances. They recently led a weeklong residency working with 300 students at the Stanford Jazz Workshop about Venezuelan rhythms, folk music, and cross-cultural collaboration. 
Too Hot To Sleep Live!
Sam Reider and the Human Hands team up with award-winning dancers/choreographers Austin Goodwin and Ida Saki (Sleep No More) to transform Too Hot To Sleep into a night of experiential theaterthrough improvised music, dance, and late-night revelry. This production was premiered in February of 2018 at a loft space in downtown Manhattan. Producer Claire Turner of Brooklyn Grange brought on Bronx Brewery, La Colombe Coffee, Austin East Ciders, Yola Mezcal, and Whisk Me Away Cakes as official food and beverage sponsors. The show ran approximately 2 hours including pre-show cocktails and dessert.
Too Hot To Sleep Live is adaptable to most theater environments but especially well suited for unconventional venues: loft, warehouse, barn, distillery, haunted mansion, etc. Collaborations with local artists and food/beverage vendors  

Sam is a passionate and experienced educator who teaches with the same principles of integrity, creativity and discovery that he brings to his music. Sam has been a bandleader for Jazz at Lincoln Center's highly acclaimed Jazz For Young People program since 2013, and has led hundreds of concert workshops in public schools throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Washington D.C., Memphis, Nashville, Chicago, Lafayette, Atlanta and New Orleans. Through his work with the U.S. Department of State, Sam has led concerts and workshops about American folk music in China, Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Turkey and Azerbaijan. Sam is a regular faculty member at the Stanford Jazz Workshop where he teaches his Future Folk Musik course each summer to hundreds of students.

Here are just a few examples of outreach and educational programs available. Sam can also customize a program to create a unique educational experience!

Roots of Freedom

Roots of Freedom is a 60-minute educational concert that explores leadership, democracy, and protest, through the lens of improvisation and American roots music. Through captivating performance and interactive activities, Sam and the Human Hands demonstrate how the structure of a band can be a model for a functioning, democratic society, how the blues provides a platform for self-expression, and how improvisation and active listening allow a collective to support a plurality of diverse voices. By mixing historical protest songs with contemporary themes, students are encouraged to consider how music can drive social change in their own communities.

Selected concert outlines are available here in PDF form:

Roots of Freedom Outline

Future Folk Musik

As a long time student and member of the Stanford Jazz community, Sam has been happy to be on faculty at the Stanford Jazz Workshop since 2014. He has led a variety of workshops and masterclasses ranging from Singing for Instrumentalists, to Jazz and Protest, to the Global Roots of Jazz.

Future Folk Musik is a 90-minute interactive workshop for jazz and band instrumentalists that puts jazz in conversation with the various styles of American folk music that have surrounded it since its inception. From the roots of blues and gospel, to bluegrass and country music, from Latin American and Caribbean folk music to rock and roll, Future Folk Musik explores what it means to be an American musician. Drawing on his experiences working with bluegrass and Americana musicians, Sam encourages students to open their ears to new sounds, songs, and strategies for group improvisation and practice. Students will listen to archival recordings of early roots music, compare the works of Louis Armstrong, Bill Monroe, Ornette Coleman, Nina Simone, Ray Charles and Charlie Haden, and learn to sing and play an old-time fiddle tune.

Selected concert outlines are available here in PDF form:

Future Folk Musik Outline

Sam and the Human Hands are also available to lead advanced workshops on jazz and bluegrass improvisation techniques for instrumentalists and clinics for bands.