Kobialka studied violin at the Hartt College of Music. Kobialka was the principal second violinist with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra from September 1975 to September 2008. He was also the founding concertmaster and soloist with San Francisco’s Midsummer Mozart Festival Orchestra with George Cleve.
As a composer, Kobialka's Concerto for the Zeta-Polyphonic Electronic Violin premiered in March 1991. With the San Francisco Symphony, he gave both the American premiere of Toru Takemitsu's Far Calls, Coming Far, and the world premiere of Charles Wuorinen's Rhapsody. With the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra under Robert Shaw, he premiered Ben Weber’s Violin Concerto No. 1, dedicated to him. He also served as concertmaster for the premiere of Leonard Bernstein's Mass. In popular music, he played violin on several tracks on the 1975 rock album Ambrosia (by the band of the same name), including the solo on "Holdin' on to Yesterday".
Kobialka taught at Notre Dame University, and also at the University of the Incarnate Word. He was a recipient of the Medium Term Grant to study traditional and contemporary music by the Japanese government. Kobialka also served on Advisory Boards for Beam Foundation, Institute of Holistic Medicine, and Pacific Guqin Association.
Kobialka was commissioned to compose a film score for the "Split Horn" documentary Life of a Hmong Shaman in America, and wrote 10 orchestral and solo violin compositions for various instrumental combinations. His recorded solo artist albums include one for the Advance Recordings, and one for the Desto record label of original works dedicated to him by Lou Harrison, Henry Brant, and Glen Glassow, Donald Martino, and Arnold Franchetti. Over his career, he commissioned over 30 works from composers like Charles Wuorinen, William Bolcom, Wayne Peterson, George Rochberg, Vivian Fine, Arthur Custer, Meyer Kupferman, Marta Ptaszynska, Theodore Antoniou, Fred Fox, and Benjamin Lees.
Kobialka founded LiSem Enterprises Inc., in 1985, and created Wonder of Sound in 2009. His company focusses on new-age and classical instrumental music.
Formerly based in San Francisco, California, LiSem Enterprises Inc. is now headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, and has globally expanded. The LiSem label has produced music in various categories, such as relaxation, yoga, massage, meditation, therapy, energy and eclectic music.
- "Daniel Kobialka: 1943–2021". San Antonio Express-News. 2021-01-31. Retrieved 2021-02-05.
- "Daniel Kobialka in Violin Debut: The 19-Year-Old From Hartt College Packs Recital Hall". The New York Times. 1963-10-27. Retrieved 2021-02-05.
- Justin St. Vincent, "Daniel Kobialka, Composer and Violinist," The Spiritual Significance of Music First Edition, Xtreme Music , 2009, p105
- The Wonders of Sound, Daniel Kobialka, editor. Morris Publishing, 2009, pp ix-x.