Edward Simon made his first recording as a leader in 1994 (Beauty Within, Audioquest), giving birth to the Edward Simon Trio. That same year he took third place in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition. Since then he has founded several other jazz ensembles, including the Edward Simon Quartet, Ensemble Venezuela, and Afinidad. Subsequently Simon became interested in the folk music of his native land, Venezuela. In 2003 he founded Ensemble Venezuela, an outlet for exploring the marriage between jazz and Venezuelan music through new works and arrangements of works by Venezuelan masters. Two years later he was awarded a second grant from Chamber Music America to compose and perform the Venezuelan Suite, a work that ranges across jazz, chamber music, and Venezuelan folk music.
In 2010 Simon was named a Guggenheim Fellow by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. That same year he became a member of the SFJAZZ Collective, a prominent musician-composer jazz ensemble dedicated to creating new work and highlighting the music of historically significant jazz composers of the modern era. The collective is comprised of “eight of the most in-demand” (New York Times) artists performing today. Simon’s latest project is House of Numbers, a series of pieces for jazz quartet and chamber ensemble, commissioned by a 2014 Chamber Music America New Jazz Works grant. Performed by Afinidad and the acclaimed Imani Winds, House of Numbers premiered in September 2016 at the University of the Pacific’s Brubeck Institute in Stockton, California. Edward Simon is a Yamaha Artist.