Since launching his recording career in 1977, David Benoit’s expansive career as a contemporary jazz pianist has included over 25 solo recordings. His ‘80s releases This Side Up, Freedom at Midnight and the GRAMMY nominated Every Step of the Way are considered influential genre classics. Among his other Grammy nominations are those for Best Instrumental Composition (for “Dad’s Room,” from 1999’s Professional Dreamer) and Best Large Jazz Ensemble Performance (for the GRP All-Star Big Band).
His prolific output since 2000
includes several prominent Charlie Brown related projects (including Here's To
You, Charlie Brown: 50 Great Years and the star-studded 40 Years: A Charlie
Brown Christmas) that reflect his lifelong passion for the music of original
Peanuts composer Vince Guaraldi and solidify Benoit’s role as his musical heir.
Benoit has also released the Billboard Contemporary Jazz charting albums Fuzzy
Logic, Right Here, Right Now, Full Circle and Heroes, which paid homage to the
pianist’s top jazz and pop influences.
Benoit’s ever expanding slate of orchestral music endeavors include his ongoing role as conductor of the Asia America Symphony Orchestra and leading such eminent orchestras as the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the symphonies of London, Nuremberg, San Francisco, Atlanta, San Antonio and San Jose. Concurrent with his burgeoning career as a conductor, he recorded 1996’s American Landscape with The London Symphony Orchestra and 2005’s Orchestral Stories with members of the Asia America Symphony Orchestra and the Czech National Symphony Orchestra. Orchestral Stories featured his first piano concerto “The Centaur and the Sphinx” and his acclaimed symphonic piece “Kobe,” both of which he has performed in live settings across the country.
In 2009, Benoit performed and
conducted Leonard Bernstein’s “West Side Story” with the Asia America Symphony
Orchestra in a show that included Broadway great Lea Salonga; he later conducted
Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the same orchestra in his critically acclaimed
debut at Los Angeles’ Disney Hall.
Benoit’s notable film scores include The Stars Fell on Henrietta, produced by Clint Eastwood and starring Robert Duvall; and The Christmas Tree, produced by Sally Field, voted Best Score of 1996 by Film Score Magazine. Benoit has also been a longtime guest educator with the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, winning the organization’s “excellence in music education” award in 2001.
Through 2010, Benoit will head on the road to perform his latest inspiration from the April 2010 release, Earthglow. And on October 29, 2010, the Pianist will be honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at The American Smooth Jazz Awards in Michigan City, Indiana.