Tim Kiah

Musician, Composer, & Teacher

Multifaceted musician and composer, Tim Kiah incorporates a broad spectrum of styles and approaches to his music.  From solo pieces and songs to symphonic works, his compositions and arrangements have been performed and premiered for a variety of audiences at many different venues, including Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and the Blue Note.  He has been commissioned by organizations such as Chamber Music America and Lincoln Center Theatre, and is a composer and member of the Chelsea Symphony in New York where he lives.


            As a bass player and singer, Kiah performs in many genres of music, including classical, jazz, Americana, and folk. He has recorded and performed with Deborah Harry, Lenny Kravitz, Jerry Douglas and Andy Statman. Kiah is also the founder of the Endangered Heart Quartet {EHQ}, comprised of legendary saxophonist and poet Roy Nathanson, trombonist Curtis Fowlkes, and Grammy- nominated violinist Jesse Mills. EHQ has performed at BargeMusic among many other venues. As a member a quintet led by Nathanson called Sotto Voce, Kiah has toured internationally performing at European festivals including Banlieu Blues in Paris, and Wilisau in Switzerland. Sotto Vooce has been featured on NPR, the BBC, NDR, and Sirius XM.


            Kiah’s musical journey began at the Boston Boy Choir School, where he performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Seiji Ozawa. While with the Boston Boy Choir, he also had the opportunity to work with Leonard Bernstein. Kiah attended the Eastman School of Music where he studied performance and composition. While at Eastman, he started his professional career as a bassist performing with trumpetist Ralph Alessi and saxophonist Ravi Coltrane. He earned his MFA from City College where he studied with world-renowned bassist Ron Carter and composer David Del Tredici.


       In 2002, Kiah founded Nurse Kaya, an ensemble inspired by the healing nature of music and his background as a registered nurse. The group was comprised of a string quartet from the Juilliard school along with bass and percussion. Nurse Kaya was awarded grants from the Chamber Music America and ASCAP. Nurse Kaya performed in venues ranging from concert halls to hospitals and prisons as part of the groups mission to bring world class music to diverse audiences.


As an educator, Kiah works with all age levels. He is a board member and conductor of an organization called Subway Moon, a program that enriches students from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds with music and poetry. Subway Moon has conducted performances in many cities, including Paris, Munich, Newcastle, Detroit, and New York. Deborah Harry has performed many benefits for the organization and is also on the board of Subway Moon. Kiah has conducted composition and improvisation workshops at Bennington University and City College, and taught music at the high school and elementary school level. Kiah teaches young students from challenging socio-economic backgrounds at a head start center in Brooklyn. In this role, he is known as “Mr. Tim”.