Phillip Arthur Ranelin was born in Indianapolis, Indiana where he grew up under the influence of J.J. Johnson, Wes Montgomery, Earmon Hubbard, Pookie Johnson, Russell Webster, Willis Kirk, Jimmy Coe and Melvin Rhyne. Ranelin is loved and respected around the globe as a master trombonist of the J.J. Johnson tradition, former Freddie Hubbard sideman and as co-founder of Detroit’s famed TRIBE Records. Ranelin has studied and played with some of the most highly respected Jazz and classical educators in the business, including professors David N. Baker, Larry Ridley, Nathan Davis, Bunky Green, Dr. Louis Smith and Donald Byrd with whom in 1976 he received the key to the city of Detroit. Ranelin’s Jazz performance credits include: Norman Connors, Ella Fitzgerald, Art Pepper, Teddy Edwards, Gerald Wilson, Vi Redd, Freddie Redd, Marcus Belgrave, Wendell Harrison, Harold McKinney, Ray Appleton, Roy Brooks, Sarah Vaughan, Larry Gales, Tootie Heath, James Spaulding, the all-star Luckman Jazz Orchestra at the Disney Concert Hall, and Freddie Hubbard with whom in 1981 he appeared on MISTRAL, Japan’s #1 Jazz record of the year.
As a leader, Ranelin has shared the bill with Stanley Clarke, Christian McBride, Les McCann, Sonny Rollins, Pharoah Sanders, Wayne Shorter, Jimmy Smith, O.C. Smith, Leon Thomas and McCoy Tyner. Ranelin has appeared at many Jazz festivals around the world including the Montreux Jazz Festival, Kool Jazz, Indiana Black Expo, Vera Cruz Muestra International Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Atlantic City Jazz Festival, Montreux Detroit, the Newport and Playboy Jazz Festivals, Jazz At Drew, USC Spectrum LA Jazz, UCLA Jazz & Reggae Festival, The Indy Jazz Fest and the Inaugural Indianapolis Jazz Community Festival. A Los Angeles resident since 1977, Ranelin has been designated by official resolutions as a “Rare and Valuable Cultural Treasure” and as a “Cultural Ambassador throughout the Nation and to the world audience” by several legislative bodies such as Los Angeles City Council, Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, California Senate and California Assembly.