176 Keys: SFJAZZ Fest Presents Hiromi and Robert Glasper at the Herbst Theatre

Hiromi and Robert Glasper are two of the most exciting pianists on the scene — and they’re pulling jazz in almost entirely different directions. Glasper often tows a line between jazz and hip-hop, having acted as the music director for many of Mos Def’s live-band shows. And Hiromi is a confluence of a prodigious skill set and a knack for breaking rules.

The Robert Glasper Experiment opened the show Saturday night. Glasper played a Rhodes and a piano, sometimes both at once. But there was another keyboard on stage: Multi-instrumentalist Casey Benjamin, who backed up Q-Tip at last summer’s Outside Lands festival, piped his voice through a keytar/vocoder setup for the latter half of the set.

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