Steven Epstein (music producer)
Steven Epstein is an American record producer. He has won fifteen Grammy Awards and nominated 35 times. He has won Classical Producer of the Year seven times. While he is primarily known for his work in classical music, Epstein has Grammy nominations and wins for albums in musical theater, musical show, crossover, soundtrack, and spoken word for children.
He has worked with Yo-Yo Ma, Wynton Marsalis (classical and jazz), Plácido Domingo, Isaac Stern, Itzhak Perlman, Murray Perahia, Emanuel Ax, Bobby McFerrin, Juilliard String Quartet, Tokyo String Quartet, Fine Arts Quartet, and Punch Brothers. He has worked with the Vienna, Berlin and New York Philharmonic Orchestras, and with the Chicago, Cleveland, London, Concertgebouw, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Los Angeles Symphony Orchestras.
Epstein grew up in Queens, New York, and had an interest in classical music from a young age. He studied the credits of albums he listened to and imagined being in the concert hall. Tom Frost, the record producer, was a name that came up often in his collection.
In the early to mid-1960s, he was building short-wave radios (from Heathkit catalogs). He attended Martin Van Buren High School where Epstein played violin. He also performed with the New York All-City High School Orchestra. He corresponded with Tom Frost which lead to an invitation to meet. Frost advised Epstein to major in music and minor in communications because there were no programs in recording technology at the time.
Epstein attended Hofstra University from 1969 where he played with the college's orchestra and worked at the radio station, WFHC-FM, all four years (as classical music director and engineer). He used school microphones and sought out chamber groups to record. His senior year, Epstein purchased a Revox 77 tape recorder for $600. His goal was to ask Frost for a job once he graduated.
Epstein graduated in 1973 with a degree in Music Education.
Epstein got an interview with Tom Frost and Tom Shepherd at Columbia Records and was later called back for a second interview. He knew there was one job, two applicants, and the other applicant was more qualified. Both of them were hired in September 1973. Epstein was producing and music editing for Columbia but not allowed to touch the in-house equipment because of union rules.
Epstein worked as an employee for 33 years with Sony/BMG/Masterworks. He was senior executive producer of Sony Classical. Epstein worked with engineer Buddy Graham until Graham's retirement (in 1991) and has done many recordings with engineer Richard King. As of 2006, he is a freelance producer.
Labels he recorded for include CBS Records Masterworks, Sony Classical, RCA Red Seal, Nonesuch, Columbia Records, Naxos and PS Classics.
- "San Francisco Symphony, Renee Fleming and Steven Epstein win classical Grammy awards" Los Angeles Times, January 31, 2010
- "Steven Epstein". GRAMMY.com. 2019-02-15. Retrieved 2019-03-10.
- "Steven Epstein". The Official Masterworks Broadway Site. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
- "Steven Epstein Credits" Allmusic.com, retrieved December 27, 2017
- "Steven Epstein" masterworksbroadway.com, retrieved December 27, 2017
- Eskow, By Gary. "Steve Epstein". Mixonline. Retrieved 2019-03-10.
- "CLASS NOTES – 1973 – News | Hofstra University, New York". Retrieved 2019-03-10.
- "Epstein scores" mcgill.ca, March 11, 2004
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