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Growing up in Littleton, Colorado, DAVE GRUSIN credits his father, who was a violinist, with instilling in him and his brother Don an understanding of classical music and “the literature of great orchestration.” A piano major at the University of Colorado, he studied piano with Storm Bull and composition with Cecil Effinger.
Considered one of the top 10 film composers of his generation, Grusin is also renowned as a jazz artist and co-founder of the independent record label GRP with Larry Rosen. With an early fascination for recorded sound, they were pioneers in a deep immersion into digital technology. Early jazz-fusion albums included Mountain Dance, Migration, and Harlequin (with guitarist Lee Ritenour). In the 1990s he returned to a focus on the acoustic piano, which led to four critically acclaimed tribute albums to the music of Gershwin, Ellington, Mancini, and Bernstein. In 2004 he released Now Playing, a collection of solo piano versions of his film themes.
Grusin has written over 60 film scores and received 8 Academy Award nominations, including the receipt of an Oscar in 1988 for the musical score of The Milagro Beanfield War. His work as a recording artist and producer has resulted in 12 Grammys and countless nominations.
Over the years he has worked as an arranger/producer/pianist with a vast array of artists, including Gerry Mulligan, Quincy Jones, Peggy Lee, Carmen McRae, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Grover Washington Jr., Patti Austin, Bobby McFerrin, Diana Krall, and James Taylor.
More recently he has revisited his earlier classical roots, working again with Lee Ritenour on two Universal Classics releases: Two Worlds and Amparo, with guest artists Renée Fleming, Joshua Bell, Chris Botti, and Gil Shaham.
In addition to his professional life, Grusin is co-founder of the National Foundation for Jazz Education, a philanthropic group dedicated to helping young jazz musicians. Grusin holds honorary doctoral degrees from the University of Colorado and Berklee College of Music in Boston.