Larry Grenadier

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Larry Grenadier
Background information
Born (1966-02-06) February 6, 1966 (age 58)
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Instrument(s)Double bass

Larry Grenadier (born February 6, 1966, in San Francisco) is an American jazz double bassist.[1]

Early life[edit]

Grenadier's father was a trumpet player in World War II army bands and later in Europe, but stopped playing professionally before his children were born.[2] Grenadier began on trumpet when he was in fifth grade, before beginning to play the bass the following year.[2] Grenadier's brothers played trumpet and guitar.[2] Grenadier's father helped introduce him to the instruments and music theory. Larry's older brother Phil began listening to jazz around this time, influencing his sibling's musical interests. Grenadier began listening to several jazz bassists including Ray Brown, Charles Mingus, Richard Davis, Paul Chambers, Wilbur Ware and Oscar Pettiford, among others.

At age 12 Grenadier began formal study of the acoustic bass, learning from local jazz bass players Chris Poehlor, Paul Breslin, and Frank Tusa and later classical bassists Michael Burr and Stephen Tramontozzi. At 16, Grenadier had a busy career playing in the San Francisco Bay Area with both local musicians and those traveling through town in need of a bass player. These musicians included Harvey Wainapel, Bobby Hutcherson, Joe Henderson, Larry Vuckovitch, Eddie Henderson, Bruce Forman, Eddie Marshall, Vince Lateano, George Cables and Donald Bailey, Toots Thielmans, Johnny Griffin, Charles McPherson and Frank Morgan, among others.

Grenadier studied at Stanford University and graduated in 1989[2] with a bachelor's degree in English Literature. At Stanford, he met Stan Getz, with whom he toured.


Larry Grenadier in 2014

After graduating from Stanford, Grenadier moved to Boston to play with vibraphonist Gary Burton.[2] In 1991, he moved to New York.[2] He continued to collaborate with some of the musicians he had met during his time in Boston, such as Kurt Rosenwinkel, Joshua Redman, Mark Turner, Jorge Rossy, and Chris Cheek. Others he met for the first time in New York include Bill Stewart, Kevin Hays, Renee Rosnes, Ralph Moore, Billy Drummond, Danilo Perez, David Sánchez, Tom Harrell and Billy Hart. Grenadier continued his association with Joe Henderson, touring with his band which at times included Al Foster, Renee Rosnes and Larry Willis. He also spent a few months during his earlier years in New York playing in Betty Carter's band.

In the early 1990s, Grenadier first met and played with pianist Brad Mehldau. He joined Mehldau's Trio with drummer Jorge Rossy; together they toured and recorded for more than ten years. Rossy was replaced by drummer Jeff Ballard in 2004.

Grenadier has worked with guitarist Pat Metheny, with whom he toured as a trio along with drummer Bill Stewart. He credits his experiences touring with Metheny's trio as a significant learning experience.[3]

Grenadier has also played with John Scofield, Hudson (a collaborative project with Jack DeJohnette, John Medeski and John Scofield), Charles Lloyd, Chris Potter, Billy Higgins, Michael Brecker, and Paul Motian, among many others. In 2014 Larry Grenadier collaborates with Stefano Bollani on the album "Sheik yer Zappa".

Grenadier is a member of FLY, a trio which includes drummer Jeff Ballard and tenor saxophonist Mark Turner. They have recorded three critically acclaimed albums. He also tours and records with his wife, singer-songwriter Rebecca Martin. A landmark solo bass album The Gleaners was issued by the ECM label in 2019.[4]

Grenadier lives with Rebecca and their son Charlie James in the Hudson Valley, north of New York City.


Media related to Larry Grenadier at Wikimedia Commons

Selected discography[edit]

As leader

With BeatleJazz

  • With a Little Help From Our Friends (Lightyear, 2005)
  • All You Need is Love (Lightyear, 2007)

With Peter Beets

With Peter Bernstein

With Seamus Blake

  • The Call (Criss Cross, 1993)
  • Four Track Mind (Criss Cross, 1994)

With Chris Cheek

With George Colligan

  • The Endless Mysteries (Origin, 2013)

With Fly

With Jon Gordon

  • Ask Me Now (Criss Cross, 1994)
  • Currents (Double-Time, 1998)

With Phil Grenadier

  • Sweet Transients (Fresh Sound New Talent, 2000)
  • Playful Intentions (Fresh Sound New Talent, 2002)

With Kevin Hays

With Hudson (Jack DeJohnette, John Scofield, John Medeski, and Larry Grenadier)

With Ethan Iverson

With David Kikoski

  • Details (Criss Cross, 2003)
  • Limits (Criss Cross, 2005)

With Jonathan Kreisberg

  • Nine Stories Wide (Criss Cross, 2003)

With Charles Lloyd

With Herbie Mann

  • America/Brasil (Lightyear, 1995)
  • Celebration (Lightyear, 1995)

With Brad Mehldau

With Pat Metheny

With Paul Motian

With Rebecca Martin

  • Thoroughfare (Sunnyside, 1998)
  • Middlehope (Fresh Sound, 2000)
  • The Growing Season (Sunnyside, 2008)
  • When I Was Long Ago (Sunnyside, 2010)
  • Twain (Sunnyside, 2013)
  • The Upstate Project (Sunnyside, 2017)

With MTB

With Wolfgang Muthspiel

With Chris Potter

With Enrico Rava

With Joshua Redman

With Kurt Rosenwinkel

With Jamie Saft

With David Sánchez

  • Sketches of Dreams (Columbia, 1994)

With Stan Sulzmann

  • The Jigsaw (Basho, 2004)

With Mark Turner

With Scott Wendholt

  • From Now On (Criss Cross, 1995)

With Steve Wilson

  • Four for Time (Criss Cross, 1994)

With Frank Wess and Johnny Coles

With Chihiro Yamanaka

  • When October Goes (Atelier Sawano, 2002)
  • Madrigal (Atelier Sawano, 2004)
  • Lach Doch Mal (Verve, 2006)
  • Reminiscence (Verve, 2011)


  1. ^ Clement, Neil E. (October 1, 2019). Twentieth Century Music Writers - A Hyperlist. MTCC Publishing Company. ISBN 978-0-9986311-7-2.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Mehldau, Brad (2023). Formation: Building a Personal Canon, Part One. Equinox. pp. 214–215. ISBN 978-1-80050-313-7.
  3. ^ Brannon, Mike (2010). "Bassist Larry Grenadier". All About Jazz and/or contributing writer/visual artist. AOL Archived from the original on August 23, 2010. Retrieved July 20, 2010.
  4. ^ "Larry Grenadier embarks on a solo flight - marlbank". Archived from the original on August 29, 2019.