Born in Butte, Montana, and the youngest of five siblings, Rotondi lives in Graz, Austria, and performs there and internationally with several groups, as well as being a professor at the University for Music and Dramatic Arts (Graz). Prior to this Jim established himself on the New York City jazz scene for more than 20 years. By summer 2010, he had released 13 CDs as a leader (on Criss Cross, Sharp Nine, and most recently, Posi-Tone), as well as playing on over 80 CDs as a sideman.
In 1984, while attending North Texas State University (now the University of North Texas) Jim was awarded first place in the International Trumpet Guild's jazz trumpet competition. Since moving to New York in 1987 he has performed and recorded with a wide variety of artists including Ray Charles, Lionel Hampton, the Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orchestra, Lou Donaldson, Curtis Fuller and George Coleman.
Jim leads two groups of his own, one quintet which features vibraphonist Joe Locke, and one electric band with David Hazeltine called Full House, which utilizes electronic sound on his trumpet and a variety of other electronic instruments. The trumpeter is also a member of the hard bop collective One for All.
- The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, Second edition, three volumes, edited by Barry Kernfeld, Macmillan Publishers, London (2002)
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