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Across a career for which a two decade milestone was achieved in 2013 with his twentieth CD Twenty, Bob Baldwin has proven to be one of the most ubiquitous and ingenious chameleons of Contemporary Jazz - both in his own projects and those he has endeavored upon for others. Recently, he has twice honored the canons of giants: Never Can Say Goodbye: A Tribute to Michael Jackson (2010) and Betcha By Golly Wow: The Songs of Thom Bell (2012). What he will release next as a tribute will be massive and unpredictable.
Since 2000, the New York Pianist/Arranger has reached the top-20 Billboard Jazz charts and continues to brew new music every 12-18 months like clockwork.
For 2017 and part of 2018, Baldwin has been in the trenches, spicing up his older masters, and running it through current equipment to keep in step with sites like Tidal, who shines with 24-bit masters. 2016 brought us The Brazilian-American Soundtrack, recorded in Brazil, Atlanta and New York. Baldwin tapped into Stevie Wonder's catalog in 2015 with MelloWonder: Songs in the Key of Stevie – an unprecedented one-from-the-heart that has taken him two years to lovingly assemble.
In addition to his work as a musician, Bob Baldwin hosts a nationally syndicated weekly radio show ('The NewUrbanJazz Lounge' broadcast across the African American Public Radio Service and the Internet) and author of the music biz E-book: “You Better Ask Somebody (Staying On Top of Your Career in the ‘Friggin’ Music Business)” (2011).
BACK IN THE DAY...
Bob Baldwin [born Robert Garfield Baldwin, Jr. in Mt. Vernon, New York] is a jazz artist, composer, keyboardist, producer, arranger, radio host and author. His father, Robert Garfield Baldwin Sr. who recorded one solo LP under his leadership, played piano with bassists Keter Betts and Art Davis. Bob’s cousin is renowned pianist Larry Willis so he clearly stems from musical excellence.
Bob began being taught piano by his father at age 4. His musical influences include Herbie Hancock, Patrice Rushen, Chick Corea, Earth Wind & Fire, Ramsey Lewis, Stevie Wonder and the late, greats Joe Sample, Miles Davis and George Duke. In 1986, he formed The Bob Baldwin/Al Orlo Project in New Rochelle, NY, performing at the legendary club the Bottom Line in New York City, opening up for Tom Browne of “Funkin’ for Jamaica” fame, and this led to his first production effort with trumpeter Tom Browne on a gospel-jazz offering entitled “No Longer I”.
In addition to sideman work complimenting the like singer Phil Perry, and the late, legendary instrumentalists Grover Washington, Jr. and Noel Pointer, Baldwin released a concept project in 1988, prophetically titled "I've Got a Long Way to Go" on Malaco Jazz, and that led to Bob meeting his heroes Roberta Flack and Herbie Hancock at a Sony Innovators ceremony in Beverly Hills, and was selected by the aforementioned Flack from over 300 applicants. That led to an eventual signing by then President Sylvia Rhone to the Atlantic Jazz label. What followed was Rejoice (1990) and Reflections of Love (1992) featuring Lenny White, Marion Meadows, and James Robinson, among others. A third album for Atlantic Jazz, State of Mind was slated for 1994 but never released due to the shuttering of the label. What has followed is a total of 23 cd's to date with a personal goal of over 40 to be released.
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