Mike Melvoin

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Mike Melvoin
Born (1937-05-10)May 10, 1937
Oshkosh, Wisconsin
United States
Died February 22, 2012(2012-02-22) (aged 74)
Burbank, California
United States
Genres Jazz, rock, pop
Occupations Musician, composer, arranger
Instruments Piano
Associated acts

Michael "Mike" Melvoin (May 10, 1937 – February 22, 2012) was an American jazz pianist, composer, and arranger. He served as chairman and president of The Recording Academy and worked as a prolific studio musician, recording with Frank Sinatra, John Lennon, The Jackson 5, Natalie Cole, and The Beach Boys. Melvoin was nominated for the 2003 Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Solo for "All Or Nothing At All" from his album It's Always You.[1]

Biography[edit]

Melvoin was born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, and began playing the piano at the age of three. He studied English at Dartmouth College, graduating in 1959, but decided to pursue a career in music.[2] After moving to Los Angeles in 1961, he played with Frank Rosolino, Leroy Vinnegar, Gerald Wilson, Paul Horn, Terry Gibbs, Joe Williams, Peggy Lee and others. He released his debut album as a bandleader, Keys to Your Mind, in 1966 on Liberty Records. Melvoin played in clubs in Los Angeles, and accompanied singer Bill Henderson and played with Herb Ellis and Plas Johnson on Concord Jazz releases.

Melvoin worked extensively as a studio musician, performing on the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds (1966), Frank Sinatra's That's Life (1966), the Jackson 5's ABC (1970), John Lennon's "Stand by Me" (1975), Tom Waits' Nighthawks at the Diner (1975), and Barbra Streisand's "Evergreen (Love Theme from A Star Is Born)" (1976). He also began composing for film and television in the early 1970s including The Partridge Family, contributing scores to Fame and MacGyver.

His children, Wendy (of Wendy & Lisa), Susannah and Jonathan all became professional musicians. Melvoin died in Burbank, California on February 22, 2012 of cancer, at age 74.[3]

Discography[edit]

As leader[edit]

As sideman[edit]

With Lucio Battisti

With Thelma Houston & Pressure Cooker

With Milt Jackson

With Lalo Schifrin

With Gábor Szabó

With Tom Waits

As composer[edit]

  • Keem-O-Sabe (by the Electric Indian, top 40 hit 1969)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Barker, Andrew (February 27, 2012). "Musician Mike Melvoin dies at 74". Variety. Retrieved February 29, 2012. 
  2. ^ Yanow, Scott. "Mike Melvoin Biography". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 22, 2013. 
  3. ^ Heckman, Don (February 24, 2012). "Mike Melvoin dies at 74; studio musician, composer". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 29, 2012. 

External links[edit]