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John Pizzarelli

Jazz guitarist/vocalist John Pizzarelli is a technically proficient fretman with a soft voice, charming stage presence, and knack for uptempo swing. Most often performing in a trio setting sans drums, Pizzarelli has found his niche covering jazz standards and American popular song in his own urbane style. The son of journeyman swing guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli, John began performing with his father at age 20 and made his recorded debut with his 1983 release, I'm Hip -- Please Don't Tell My Father. Growing up, John was exposed to the music of such jazz luminaries as Les Paul and Django Reinhardt, and he has justifiably drawn comparisons to both of these legendary guitarists.

Pizzarelli's updated old-school sound caught the ear of many jazz purists early on; notably, in 1993 the John Pizzarelli Trio opened various dates on Frank Sinatra's tour, eventually participating in the legendary vocalist's 80th birthday celebration at Carnegie Hall. Interestingly, Pizzarelli's growing popularity garnered him a lead spot in the 1997 Broadway production of Dream, a tribute to composer Johnny Mercer. His 1998 RCA release, Meets the Beatles, found him reinterpreting classic songs by the iconic Liverpool quartet, while the following year he paid tribute to one of his biggest influences, pianist/vocalist Nat King Cole, on P.S. Mr. Cole. Pizzarelli then signed with the Telarc label in 1999 and released two standards-based albums, Kisses in the Rain and Let There Be Love, in 2000.

Since then, he has recorded an album with pianist George Shearing and celebrated ten years of performing with his trio by releasing the concert album Live at Birdland in 2003. Taking a break from swing, Pizzarelli released Bossa Nova in 2004. Largely featuring the works of Brazilian composer Antonio Carlos Jobim, the album showcased the Pizzarelli Trio on such classics of the genre as "The Girl from Ipanema" and "Aguas de Marco" (Waters of March). In 2005 Pizzarelli returned to his usual fare of American standards with Knowing You (though he penned the title track), and, backed by the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, paid his tribute to the legend himself with 2006's Dear Mr. Sinatra. With a Song in My Heart, featuring the songs of composer Richard Rodgers, followed in 2008.

In 2010, Pizzarelli paid homage to legendary pianist/bandleader Duke Ellington with Rockin' in Rhythm: A Duke Ellington Tribute. The following year he appeared with his father on Family Fugue. In 2012, Pizzarelli released the album Double Exposure, featuring his take on classic jazz standards as well as contemporary pop standards from his youth, including works by Elvis Costello, Billy Joel, Steely Dan, and others. Three years later, he saluted Paul McCartney via the smoky, low-key Midnight McCartney album. ~ Matt Collar
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Double Exposure

1. I Feel Fine / Sidewinder

2. Harvest Moon

3. Traffic Jam / The Kicker

4. Ruby Baby

5. Alison

6. Rosalinda's Eyes

7. In Memory of Elizabeth Reed

8. Drunk on the Moon / Lush Life

9. Walk Between the Raindrops

10. Free Man in Paris

11. Take a Lot of Pictures

12. I Can Let Go Now

13. Diamond Girl

x

Track List: With A Song In My Heart

1. With A Song In My Heart

2. This Can't Be Love

3. I Like To Recognize The Tune

4. It's Easy To Remember

5. Johnny One Note

6. Nobody's Heart

7. Happy Talk

8. Mountain Greenery

9. I Have Dreamed

10. Lady Is A Tramp

11. She Was Too Good To Me

12. You've Got To Be Carefully Taught

x

Track List: Dear Mr. Sinatra

1. Ring-A-Ding Ding

2. You Make Me Feel So Young

3. How About You?

4. If I Had You

5. Witchcraft

6. I've Got You Under My Skin

7. Nice 'n' Easy

8. I See Your Face Before Me/In The Wee Small Hours (Of The Morning)

9. Why Can't We Be Friends?

10. Yes Sir, That's My Baby

11. Last Dance

x

Track List: Knowing You

1. Coffee Black

2. New Sun In The Sky

3. Ain't That A Kick In The Head

4. The Shadow Of Your Smile

5. Pick Yourself Up

6. Knowing You

7. God Only Knows

8. Quality Time

9. Eastwood Lane

10. I Just Found Out About Love

11. Say It

12. That Face

13. How Long Has This Been Going On

14. The First Hint Of Autumn

15. If It's The Last Thing I Do

x

Track List: Bossa Nova

1. One Note Samba

2. Fascinatin' Rhythm

3. The Girl From Ipanema

4. Your Smiling Face

5. Estabe

6. Desafinado (Off Key)

7. Aquelas Coisas Todas (All Those Things)

8. I Remember

9. Fancesca

10. Love Dance

11. So Danco Samba

12. Aguas De Marco (Waters Of March)

13. Soares Samba

x

Track List: Live at Birdland

Disc 1

1. Introduction (Live)

2. Just You, Just Me (Live)

3. The Frim Fram Sauce (Live)

4. The Song Is You (Live)

5. Isn't It a Pity? (Live)

6. Rhode Island Intro (Live)

7. Rhode Island (Live)

8. Ray Kennedy: Library of Congress Story (Live)

9. Gospel Truth (Live)

10. Ray Kennedy: Dizzy Gillespie Story (Live)

11. Tea For Tatum (Live)

12. James Taylor Intro (Live)

13. Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight (Live)

14. James Taylor Intro 2 (Live)

15. Mean Old Man (Live)

16. Manhattan (Live)

17. Rosemary Clooney Story (Live)

18. Moonlight Becomes You (Live)

19. Final Intro (Live)

20. Will You Still Be Mine? (Live)

Disc 2

1. Introduction (Live)

2. Three Little Words (Live)

3. They Can't Take That Away From Me (Live)

4. Oh, How My heart Beats For You (Live)

5. The Day I Found You (Live)

6. Polliwog Story (Live)

7. It's Only a Paper Moon (Live)

8. Stompin' at The Savoy (Live)

9. Better Run Before It's Spring (Live)

10. Grover Kemble Story (Live)

11. Headed Out to Vera's (Live)

12. Medley: Gee Baby, Ain't I Good To You / Baby, Baby All The Time / Midnight Blue (Live)

13. I Like Jersey Best Intro (Live)

14. I Like Jersey Best (Live)

15. My Castle's Rockin' (Live)

16. Baby Just Come Home To Me (Live)

x

Track List: The Rare Delight Of You

1. If Dreams Come True

2. The Lady's In Love With You

3. Everything Happens To Me

4. Lulu's Back In Town

5. Something To Remember You By

6. Lemon Twist

7. Lost April

8. Problem

9. The Rare Delight Of You

10. Shine On Your Shoes

11. Indian Summer

12. Be Careful It's My Heart

13. September In The Rain

14. I Predict

15. Lucky To Be Me

x

Track List: Let There Be Love

1. Let There Be Love

2. I'm Putting All My Eggs In One Basket

3. These Foolish Things

4. All I Saw Was You

5. Everything I Have Is Yours

6. Stompin' At The Savoy

7. Follow

8. Our Little Secret

9. You'll Never Know

10. I Don't Know Why (I Just Do)

11. Our Love Rolls On

12. Just One More Chance

13. Lucky Charm

14. Da Vinci's Eyes

15. What Is There To Say

x

Track List: P.S. Mr. Cole

1. Walkin' My Baby Back Home

2. Candy

3. Welcome To The Club

4. Indiana

5. I Love You For Sentimental Reasons

6. Don't Let It Go To Your Head

7. Meet Me At No Special Place

8. The Late, Late Show

9. Smile

10. Tenderly

11. I Was A Little Too Lonely

12. I'm An Errand Boy For Rhytm

13. Then I'll Be Tired Of You

14. That's Nat

15. Azure-Te

16. I Know That You Know

17. Embraceable You

18. I Like Jersey Best

x

Track List: After Hours

1. Coquette

2. I Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out To Dry

3. I'll Never Be The Same

4. They Can't Take That Away From Me

5. You're Lookin' At Me

6. Mam'selle

7. But Not For Me

8. Lullaby

9. In The Wee Small Hours

10. Sometimes I'm Happy

11. It Might As Well Be Spring

12. Be My Baby Tonight

13. Stringbean

x

Track List: Kisses In The Rain

1. From Monday On

2. When I Take My Sugar To Tea

3. I'm In The Mood For Love

4. I Can't Get Up The Nerve

5. I Got Rhythm

6. When Lights Are Low

7. I Thought About You

8. Should I?

9. Don't Be That Way

10. I Could Have Told You So

11. Kisses In The Rain

12. Oscar Night

13. Polka Dots And Moonbeams

14. Baby Just Come Home To Me

15. A Lifetime Or Two

16. I Wouldn't Trade You

x

Track List: Rockin In Rhythm: A Tribute To Duke Ellington

1. In A Mellow Tone

2. East St. Louis Toodle-Oo/Don't Get Around Much Anymore

3. Satin Doll

4. C Jam Blues

5. In My Solitude

6. Just Squeeze Me

7. Lost/Perdido

8. All Too Soon

9. I'm Beginning To See The Light

10. Love Scene

11. I Got It Bad And That Ain't Good

12. Cottontail/Rockin' In Rhythm

Comments

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Had the pleasure of hearing John and his father play at Waterloo Village near Netcong NJ, had to be one of his early performances - have been a fan ever since. They were playing in a barn on a beautiful summer afternoon. Was there with my son who about ten years old at the time.
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Our first live exposure to JP was a week after 9/11 in Manchester VT. His music and wit was just what we all needed. An unforgettabl e night.
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slaphappy170 8
Great concert at Community Theater in Morristown with the great Ramsey Lewis! What a joy that was.
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leisterr8
I would not characterize Bucky Pizzarelli as a journeyman. He is brilliant, but he often chooses to play a secondary role. I also agree with sandy.dj2 about John. Early in his career, I would have called him technically proficient, but he has improved considerably .
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rogana1955
Love this guy such a gentleman .
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leo.martinez 7 4
I've seen him twice in concert. Once with his wife, once without. He is a fantastic musician and performer. My only beef with his performances is his wife's tired and hackneyed political views onstage. We came to listen to music...not an amateur political activist! If you can retire the myopic political spam, your concerts would be even better!
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Nice one!
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He reminds me alittle of mel T
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drsalk1
Amazing talent and all around great individual.
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sandy.dj2
This bio needs some serious updating.

Technically proficient fretman??? Yeah, I'd think so, since Paul McCartney, you know that guy from The Beatles picked John Pizzarelli to accompany him on his Grammy winning Kisses on the Bottom.
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John Pizzarelli is a great talent. I'm so glad that is helping keep the great American songbook alive. I've had the opportunity to see him live in concert with his quartet a couple of times, and he is fun and engaging. As others have mentioned, he and his wife Jessica Mulasky have a wonderful radio program called Radio Deluxe on NPR or the internet.
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Wonderful touch. Sounds as if he’s right there in the room with you.
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mightyvic0
Love his voice, softly melodic and oddly smooth and sexy.
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Just heard him for the first time...LOVE. . . s m a r t lurics and my kind of vibe. Reminds me of my lonftime love, Michael Franks!
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Catch John's weekly radio show Radio Deluxe (I find it on local public radio station) with wife Jessica Mulasky if you want to get into standards old to modern and fun commentary on music.
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John will be in Chicago (Lincolnshir e ) December 7th - can't wait to see him!
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Had the pleasure to catch him live at Yoshi's in Oakland, California what a talent. Great sense of humor as well.
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HAVEN;T LEFT A COMMENT BEFORE, BUT THUMBS UP EVERY TIME PANDORA PLAYS JOHN P. LUV HIM, MEL IS GRINNING TOO.
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stevelvesq
Two Family House music...the best
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he makes it look soooooo easy!
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such a pleasure to listen to-- come to Austin, TX, please
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LITTLEOLDRHO D E I S L A N D H A S Y O U
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Still kicking myself for missing him @ the Clarion in Brazosport, TX. Won a free ticket, too, from KUHF in Houston by identifying his father, Bucky. Too bad they (KUHF) split into 2 stations as now the classical side is lower powered & hard to receive here!
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Seeing him in Asheville in 3 weeks. Can't wait!
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derfberger
will see him in 2 weeks in Naples Fl, can't wait
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First time hearing him on Pandora Radio, impressed I did not think anyone could stand up to Buble! You go John!
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cibm757
Fresh, innovative, and cool! Like the music very much.
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Wish he'd come back to Rochester, NY. He's the best
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My wife and I have seen John perform many many times and have enjoyed not only his singing and guitar playing but also his wonderful stories. John keep up the good work.....
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I am a drummer, but have heard this man and a pianist alone and had the pleasure of telling him that you really did not need a drum kit behind you as you covered it all. I also said it would be a treat to be the third wheel in the band,but was perfectly content to sit in the seats and enjoy.
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joecarrita
Saw him in person a couple of years ago with his Father and Brother. One of the best concert experiences I've ever had. He came out after and spoke to everyone who waited an took pictures. It was great.
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Coquette, excellent example of John's style.
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MARVELOUS
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I always enjoy his very relaxed, smooth, mellow style. Music is in his bones with his father being also a very talented and well known musician.
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So talented. If you have not heard Bossa Nova yet you have to give it a listen.
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bkarman
It doesn't get better than this.
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very mellow, laid-back style. enjoyed it
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anglophile45
Never heard him before. Amazing voice.
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luriu
Piz says: "Music is good." I think he makes it so!
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I'm listening to John on NPR radio with Mariam McPartland. What a delight! His discussion with Mariam about Sinatra, Nat King Cole, and others really personalizes and brings them to life with first hand stories about touring and recording with these giants of jazz!
Piano Jazz on NPR lets you participate vicariously with these music legends!
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i don,t know how old he is but he has the real the deal going on, and he plays great. nise strings.
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ackerbex3
He may not have the most beautiful voice going, but he is an excellent stylist. He puts a song across with great style. Hope to hear more of him!
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great artist, see him and his quartet in person and you will marvel. Not only is he a great performer, but a great story teller and more importantly, a great guy to chat with after the show. Bucky, his dad, I'm sure is very proud of him and his brother Martin.
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cuzinmex
He's new to me and I think he's my kind of vocalist.
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clantz3
Wonderful music and style
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I love this guy - I first heard him on WNEW radio years ago. Please play more of him.
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artgm2000
love his work!

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