Randy Waldman

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Randy Waldman
Randy & Andrea Bocelli - Dec 7, 2005.jpg
Randy Waldman with Andrea Bocelli in 2005
Background information
BornSeptember 8, 1955
Chicago, Illinois
Genres
Occupation(s)
InstrumentsPiano
Years active1966–present
Associated acts
WebsiteOfficial website

Randy Waldman (born September 8, 1955, Chicago, Illinois, United States)[1] is an American pianist, arranger, composer, and conductor. Waldman co-arranged Barbra Streisand's "Somewhere", which was awarded with an arrangement Grammy in 1985. He has served as Streisand's pianist and conductor for over 30 years and has worked with numerous artists including Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Beyoncé, Ray Charles, and Stevie Wonder. He is also an airplane and helicopter pilot and holds a 2003 flight speed record in a Bell OH-58 helicopter.[2]

Early life[edit]

Waldman was born in Chicago, Illinois on September 8, 1955.[1] Waldman began playing piano at age five at which time he was considered a child prodigy.[3] He was hired to demonstrate pianos at a local piano store at age 12. While in high school, he performed with the Northwestern University Jazz band.[4]

Career[edit]

At the age of 21, Waldman was hired to go on tour as the pianist for Frank Sinatra.[4][5] He was then hired by The Lettermen to go on tour from Chicago to Los Angeles. After the tour, Waldman relocated to Los Angeles and, within a year, he toured with Minnie Riperton, Lou Rawls, Paul Anka, and George Benson, the last of whom kept Waldman around as his pianist, musical director, and arranger for the following seven years.[4][6][7]

Eventually, Waldman began a session career in Los Angeles that would go on to span 40 years. He has performed on hundreds of albums, motion picture soundtracks, television shows, and jingles.[4] In the 1980s, Waldman worked on soundtracks such as Ghostbusters, Romancing the Stone, Back to the Future, Nuts, Beetlejuice, Salsa, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Abyss, and Weekend at Bernie's.[8][9][10][11]

In 1983, Waldman was nominated for a Grammy for Best Vocal Arrangement for The Manhattan Transfer's "Code of Ethics", from their album Bodies and Souls.[12][13] Two years later, Waldman's co-arrangement of the West Side Story song "Somewhere", on Barbra Streisand's The Broadway Album, won a Grammy.[4][14] Waldman has been Streisand’s pianist for over 30 years and is featured on many of her albums, movies, and live performances.[15][10]

In the 1990s, Waldman worked on the soundtracks for numerous films including Forrest Gump, The Bodyguard, Mission: Impossible, and Titanic.[8][9][10] He also worked with numerous artists over the course of his career including Barbra Streisand, Michael Jackson, Paul McCartney, Patti LaBelle, Celine Dion, Beyoncé, Madonna, Whitney Houston, Olivia Newton-John, Barry Manilow, Ray Charles, The Stylistics, Michael Bublé, Quincy Jones, Johnny Mathis, Stevie Wonder, Andrea Bocelli,[4][9][16][17][18] John Travolta,[19] Kenny G,[17] Katey Sagal, and others.[20]

In 1998, Waldman released his first solo album, Wigged Out, on his own WhirlyBird Records, featuring bassist John Pattitucci and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta. The album consisted of a collection of classical songs reworked with jazz arrangements.[21] His second album, UnReel, was released in 2001 and featured a variety of soundtrack and theme music from many different films and television shows.[3] In 2002, he worked on the soundtrack for Ice Age before releasing a third album, Timing is Everything, in 2003.[4][14]

In 2017, Waldman appeared on Seal's Standards album which featured some of Frank Sinatra's songs.[22] He was also featured as Barbra Streisand's pianist, music director, and conductor for her Barbra: The Music, The Mem'ries, The Magic tour. A filmed version of one of the shows was released on Netflix in November 2017.[23]

Selected discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

List of studio albums with selected album details
Title Details
Wigged Out
  • Released: 1998 (US)
  • Label: WhirlyBird/Concord Jazz
  • Formats: CD, Vinyl
UnReel
  • Released: 2001 (US)
  • Label: WhirlyBird/Concord Jazz
  • Formats: CD, Vinyl
Timing is Everything
  • Released: 2003 (US)
  • Label: WhirlyBird/Concord Jazz
  • Formats: CD, Vinyl

Songwriting, instrumental, and production[edit]

List of songwriting, instrumental, and production credits on selected albums
Album
[16][17]
Year Artist Role Notes
Lou Rawls Live 1978 Lou Rawls Keyboards
Emotion 1984 Barbra Streisand Synthesizer US #19[24]
The Broadway Album 1985
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
  • Synthesizer
  • Assistant Engineer
US #1,[24] co-arrangement of "Somewhere" won Grammy
20/20 George Benson
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
  • Synthesizer
US #45[25]
One Voice 1987 Barbra Streisand Synthesizer US #9[24]
Bad Michael Jackson Synthesizer US #1[26]
Till I Loved You 1988 Barbra Streisand
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Synthesizer
  • Programming
  • Drum programming
  • Rhythm arrangements
US #10[24]
This Christmas 1990 Patti LaBelle
  • Producer
  • Engineer
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Synthesizer
  • Drum programming
  • Vocal arrangement
  • Composer
The Comfort Zone 1991 Vanessa Williams
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Arrangement preparation
  • Writer
US #17[27]
Love Remembers 1993 George Benson
  • Strings
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
My World Ray Charles
  • Guitar
  • Synthesizer
US #145[28]
The Concert 1994 Barbra Streisand
  • Piano
  • Synthesizer
US #10[28]
Miracles: The Holiday Album Kenny G Piano US #1[29]
Earth Songs 1995 John Denver
  • Piano
  • Synthesizer
My Cherie Sheena Easton
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
  • Programming
  • Guest artist
HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I Michael Jackson
  • Keyboards
  • Synthesizer
US #1[26]
The Best of George Benson George Benson Synthesizer
Star Bright 1996 Vanessa Williams
  • Arranger
  • Piano
US #36[27]
Higher Ground 1997 Barbra Streisand Piano US #1[24]
Blood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix Michael Jackson
  • Keyboards
  • Synthesizer
US #24[26]
Greatest Hits Volume III Billy Joel Keyboards US #9[30]
The Complete Hits Collection: 1973–1997
Bathhouse Betty 1998 Bette Midler
  • Piano
  • Guest artist
US #32[31]
The Collection John Denver Arranger
The Movie Album: As Time Goes By Neil Diamond Keyboards US #31[32]
A Love Like Ours 1999 Barbra Streisand
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
  • Guest artist
  • Synthesizer
US #6[24]
Classics in the Key of G Kenny G
  • Piano
  • Guest artist
US #17[29]
Faith: A Holiday Album US #6[29]
Timeless: Live in Concert 2000 Barbra Streisand
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
  • Orchestration
US #21[24]
Les Incontournables George Benson
  • Synthesizer
  • Programming
The George Benson Anthology Synthesizer
Mathis on Broadway Johnny Mathis
  • Producer
  • Engineer
  • Arranger
  • Guest artist
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
Freedom Sheena Easton
  • Producer
  • Engineer
  • Arranger
  • Programming
Best Ballads
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
  • Programming
Christmas Memories 2001 Barbra Streisand Keyboards US #15[24]
Duets 2002 Arranger US #38[24]
Paradise Kenny G Piano US #9[29]
Wishes: A Holiday Album US #29[29]
The Christmas Album Johnny Mathis US #143[33]
Just Whitney Whitney Houston
  • String arrangements
  • String conductor
US #9[34]
The Movie Album 2003 Barbra Streisand
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
US #5[24]
Michael Bublé Michael Bublé
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
  • Horn arrangements
US #5[35]
Let It Snow
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
US #32[35]
The Greatest Hits of All George Benson Synthesizer US #138[25]
Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook Bette Midler
  • Piano
  • Harpsichord
US #14[31]
Genius Loves Company 2004 Ray Charles
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
  • Rhythm Arrangement
US #1[28]
The Essential Johnny Mathis Johnny Mathis Piano
It's Time 2005 Michael Bublé Piano US #7[35]
The Greatest Holiday Classics Kenny G
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
  • Horn Arrangements
US #39[29]
My Lives Billy Joel Keyboards US #171[30]
With Love 2006 Michael Bublé Piano
Givin' It Up George Benson and Al Jarreau
  • Piano
  • Arranger
US #58[25]
I'm in the Mood for Love...The Most Romantic Melodies of All Time Kenny G
  • Conductor
  • Piano
  • Arranger
US #37[29]
Cool Yule Bette Midler
  • Piano
  • Keyboards
US #33[31]
Amore Andrea Bocelli US #3[36]
Live in Concert 2006 2007 Barbra Streisand
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Orchestration
US #7[24]
Call Me Irresponsible Michael Bublé
  • Arranger
  • Keyboards
US #1[35]
King of Pop 2008 Michael Jackson
  • Keyboards
  • Synthesizer
The Collection 2009 Synthesizer
Special Delivery 2010 Michael Bublé Piano US #26[35]
What Matters Most 2011 Barbra Streisand US #4[24]
Release Me 2012 US #7[24]
The Classic Christmas Album Kenny G US #128[29]
This Christmas John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John
  • Producer
  • Arranger
  • Conductor
  • Mixing
  • Organ
  • Piano
  • Synthesizer bass
US #81[37]
Back to Brooklyn 2013 Barbra Streisand Keyboards
Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole George Benson
  • Producer
  • Conductor
  • Arranger
  • Piano
  • Background vocals
US #89[25]
Love in Portofino Andrea Bocelli
  • Keyboards
  • Piano
US #40[36]
Partners 2014 Barbra Streisand Piano US #1[24]
Stages 2015 Josh Groban US #2[38]
Stages: Live 2016 US #149[38]
Encore: Movie Partners Sing Broadway Barbra Streisand US #1[24]
The Music...The Mem'ries...The Magic! 2017
  • Music direction
  • Piano
US #69[24]
Standards Seal Piano

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Randy Waldman". Discogs. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  2. ^ World and United States Aviation & Space Records, © 2004, National Aeronautic Association of the USA
  3. ^ a b Santella, Jim (October 1, 2001). "Randy Waldman: UnReel". All About Jazz. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Huey, Steve. "Randy Waldman | Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  5. ^ "Seal sets new Standards with album of timeless classics and premieres I've Got You Under My Skin". The Telegraph. September 28, 2017. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  6. ^ "Seal recruited for Frank Sinatra Christmas duets album". Music News. October 21, 2017. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  7. ^ Bishop, Pete (July 12, 1979). "George Benson Hits Right Note". The Pittsburgh Press. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Randy Waldman". IMDb. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  9. ^ a b c Hauser, Christian V.; Tomal, Daniel R.; Rajan, Rekha S. (September 14, 2017). Songwriting: Strategies for Musical Self-Expression and Creativity (3rd revised ed.). Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
  10. ^ a b c Chaves Espinach, Fernando (November 1, 2014). "Pianista Randy Waldman se presentará". La Nación (in Spanish). Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  11. ^ "Randy Waldman, Dreamstreet, Vince DiCola, Jeremy Lubbock – The Artful Balance Collection - Volume 1". Discogs. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  12. ^ "Randy Waldman". Grammy Awards. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  13. ^ "Bodies and Souls". MusicBrainz. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  14. ^ a b "Pianist Randy Waldman Finds PM40 The Piano Miking Solution". Earthworks Audio. March 12, 2010. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  15. ^ Vitello, Barbara (August 10, 2016). "Streisand returns to Chicago solo, and she sure can deliver a song". Daily Herald. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  16. ^ a b "Randy Waldman - Credits". Discogs. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  17. ^ a b c "Randy Waldman - Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  18. ^ "Exclusive Interview with Suzi Carr in Concert". LAEXTV. November 18, 2015. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  19. ^ Gans, Andrew (October 3, 2012). ""Grease" Stars Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta Reunite for Holiday CD; Barbra Streisand Among Guest Vocalists". Playbill. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  20. ^ O'Malley, Kathy; Collin, Dorothy (August 26, 1990). "In your face Philip Knight, chairman of Nike..." Chicago Tribune. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  21. ^ "Jazz Times, Volume 28, Issues 6-10". JazzTimes. 1998. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  22. ^ Lanham, Tom (November 28, 2017). "Seal gets back to basics, and up close and personal". San Francisco Examiner. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  23. ^ Hetrick, Adam (October 23, 2017). "Barbra: The Music ... The Mem'ries ... The Magic! Will Premiere on Netflix". Playbill. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p "Barbra Streisand - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  25. ^ a b c d "George Benson - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  26. ^ a b c "Michael Jackson - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  27. ^ a b "Vanessa Williams - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  28. ^ a b c "Ray Charles - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  29. ^ a b c d e f g h "Kenny G - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  30. ^ a b "Billy Joel - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  31. ^ a b c "Bette Midler - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  32. ^ "Neil Diamond - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  33. ^ "Johnny Mathis - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  34. ^ "Whitney Houston - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  35. ^ a b c d e "Michael Bublé - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  36. ^ a b "Andrea Bocelli - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  37. ^ "John Travolta - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  38. ^ a b "Josh Groban - Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.

External links[edit]