Born: January 27, 1955 Primary Instrument: Piano
Pianist Bob Gluck is a pianist whose repertoire spans jazz, live electronic music, and avant-garde concert music. Karl Ackermann (All About Jazz) wrote of the latest of Gluck’s five recordings: “As a composer and player, Gluck ranks with the likes of Andrew Hill and Cecil Taylor… Something Quiet is completely original, artistically spontaneous, and intellectually challenging.” Allan Kozinn (New York Times) wrote that Gluck is “an accomplished jazz pianist” who played with “virtuosic fluidity.” Keyboard magazine named him June 2009 “Unsigned Artist of the Month.” Gluck’s current musical collaborators include saxophonists Joe Giardullo and Ras Moshe, bassists Christopher Dean Sullivan and Michael Bisio, drummer Dean Sharp, and computer musician/composer Neil Rolnick.
Raised in New York as a conservatory student and political activist, Gluck spent many years away from music, leading a life as a rabbi. Bob Gluck’s return to composing electronic music in 1995 and to the piano in 2005 marked a new beginning in his unusual career as a musician, educator, and writer. With influences as diverse as Herbie Hancock, Jimi Hendrix, Johann Sebastian Bach, Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, and Karlheinz Stockhausen, Gluck has discovered a way to marry interests in electronic music with his love of jazz. Gluck designs his own software interfaces for interactive musical performance and multimedia installation, including the sound installations 'Layered Histories' (2004), an immersive sound and video environment with Cynthia Rubin and 'Sounds of a Community' (2002), in which visitors trigger and shape recorded sounds by interacting with electronic musical sculptures.
Gluck’s musical training is from the Julliard, Manhattan, and Crane schools of Music, the State University of New York at Albany (BA, 1977) and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (MFA, 2001). His music has been performed internationally. His writings have appeared in Computer Music Journal, Leonardo Music Journal, Leonardo, Organized Sound, Tav + (Israel), Journal SEAMUS, Review Zaman (France), Magham (Iran), Ideas Sonicas (Mexico), and elsewhere. He is author of “You’ll Know When You Get There: Herbie Hancock and the Mwandishi Band” (forthcoming, University of Chicago Press).
Bob Gluck is Associate Professor of Music and Director of the Electronic Music Studio at The University at Albany.
About ‘Something Quiet’ (FMR, 2011) with Joe Giardullo and Christopher Dean Sullivan: Karl Ackermann (All About Jazz): “As a composer and player, Gluck ranks with the likes of Andrew Hill and Cecil Taylor. The model for Something Quiet incorporates structure, power and the lack of restrictions... Something Quiet is completely original, artistically spontaneous, and intellectually challenging.” Doug Simpson (Audiofile Audition): “… a musical tapestry where anything can and often does happen… [Gluck’s] reharmonized version of Hancock’s “Dolphin Dance” … has a subtle shape that reinforces Hancock’s original objective while including chordal and melodic adaptations that deliver a distinct edge to Gluck’s translation. While Gluck is in the limelight most of the time, Sullivan supports with underpinned emotive interaction.” Bob Gish (Jazz Inside): “… the merger of feeling and melody, rhythm and sound… a partnership of resonance and vibration delivering to the fullest … enhanced by the sweetest of pulsing rhythms and cascading notes… road signs of timelessness.” Gregory Applegate Edwards (Grapplegate Music Review): “shows the subtle sensitivity of a pianist who has listened carefully to what's good in improvisational music today... Joe Giardullo... control, timbre, and phrasing of a master. Christopher Dean Sullivan brings in the bottom as a third line-creating voice... Put all that together and you get music that challenges your ears at the same time as it delivers musico-logical brilliance.”
The Bob Gluck Trio's premiere recording 'Sideways' (FMR 2008): Hrayr Attarian (JazzTimes Community): a near classic work of art, one that will easily withstand the test of time and especially with the pristine sound of the CD will definitely reward repeated listenings. Cadence magazine: it is a potent first document of this expansive trio, with Gluck's open-ended compositions and those of others sparking the creative improvised explorations from all. Free Jazz Blog: ... a trio of three equal instruments creating a total sound, a broad listening experience, that does not need to rely on melody, but comes to its full effect when the musicians' creativity leads us into new territory... the trio' s version of 'Lonely Woman' is brilliant. Ornette Coleman's beautiful tune is fully in sync with the rest of the album's desperate tone, full of shattered hope, and deep longing for a better world. Great music. I truly hope to hear more from this trio in the future.
Bob Gluck: piano
Michael Bisio: bass
Dean Sharp: drums
Bob Gluck: piano
Joe Giardullo: soprano sax
Christopher Dean Sullivan: bass
Bob Gluck: piano and electronics
Michael Bisio: bass
Dean Sharp: Drums
Bob Gluck: piano, shofar and electronics
Bob Gluck: baglama saz, shofar and electronics
Zoe Zak: voice
Stories Heard and Retold
Bob Gluck: electroacoustic music
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