TED HOWE was born in Boston, MA with a fascination for sound from the day he was born. A penchant for sound from a toddler may not always be a parent's dream. However, this love of sound grew as did that of the Red Sox from the attention he received from his Uncle Oly, who introduced him both to jazz and to baseball. Young TED listened to every jazz album he could find, attended many jazz concerts and quickly found his favorites amongst Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, Louis Armstrong, Oscar Peterson, George Shearing, Dave Brubeck and Bill Evans.
TED began studying piano in his tender teens with HARRY SMITH, one of the legendary founders of the BERKLEE COLLEGE OF MUSIC. TED'S natural persistence and relentless fascination of developing his craft dominated his life. He soon became not only a student at Berklee, but a professor of piano arranging, theory and improvisation -- all before reaching the age of 24.
After a two year stint as a pianist in the Army, TED took a gig at one of Boston's leading live entertainment venues, The Surf Supper Club where he soon became bandleader playing and conducting for some of the biggest acts of the time. It was at the Surf that HOWE honed his craft of arranging -- a strong point that to this day sets him aside from other gifted pianists.
TED moved his family to Atlanta where he continued performing, composing, arranging, producing and teaching. Again, HOWE shared the stage with many of the great jazz artists and entertainers of the day and he continued building relationships with performers who called on his services each time they came to town, such as MEL TORME -- who refused to sing with anyone else on his visits to Atlanta.
HOWE also joined the faculty of GEORGIA STATE UNIVERSITY where he assisted in developing its first jazz education program.
Now living in Los Angeles and a SUMMIT RECORDS recording artist, TED continues to record, produce, arrange and perform extensively. His latest CD, LOVE SONG, pays homage to HAROLD ARLEN, COLE PORTER, and JAMES VAN HEUSEN in a significantly new way.
LOVE SONG debuts four of HOWE’S own love songs, written with his partner, lyricist and Executive Producer, REBEKAH MILLER. The Miller & Howe songs are lovingly sung by star of stage, film and television, LAINIE KAZAN, and renowned jazz baritone, GIACOMO GATES.
TED has two other releases on SUMMIT. The first, ELLINGTON, which was an “accidental” CD evolved from HOWE’S touring show which paid homage to his idol. It was recorded strictly for choreography purposes so that a local dance company could turn the show into a ballet. The music felt like a CD from the start. So TED added a few tunes, playing with his longtime friends, bassist NEAL STARKEY and drummer JERRY FIELDS. The album has continued to enjoy rave reviews and had a lengthy stay on the JAZZWEEK airplay chart.
HOWE’S second release was ELTON EXPOSED, a jazz trio interpretation of ELTON JOHN'S music, featuring drummer JOE LABARBERA and bassist JOHN PATITUCCI. Once again, TED HOWE had brilliantly tackled music beloved by the public and turned it on its ear in an accessible way. The album inadvertently became a “must have” for any ELTON fan on the official ELTON JOHN FAN CLUB web site -- perhaps a first for any jazz CD.
Three recent projects of note include; AN EVENING OF DUKE ELLINGTON WITH TED HOWE & THE RUTH MITCHELL DANCE THEATRE, a full fledged ballet featuring 21 dancers, choreographed by members of the ALVIN AILEY DANCE COMPANY. The ballet music was entirely TED’S arrangements of DUKE'S music set to dance. Premiering in Atlanta to glowing reviews, the ballet was performed to sold out houses.
The second project, AND THEN THE DANCE FOR DAWN, a suite for viola and piano composed by TED, was performed in Dallas by members of the DALLAS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA at the NASHER SCULPTURE CENTER. TED HOWE was the only living composer to be chosen for this prestigious event and was welcomed into the symphonic community with open arms.
The third project, LICENCE TO SWING, THE MUSIC OF JAMES BOND, premiered at HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY as the final event of a week long JAMES BOND symposium. TED arranged many of the familiar BOND themes, in a way they have never been heard before, for a jazz sextet and two vocalists.
HOWE'S EVENING OF DUKE ELLINGTON began and continues to be a formidable presentation, touring colleges, jazz societies and concert venues. HOWE takes one of his first idol's music through an eclectic array of styles, always respecting the original intent of the music. The show features educational and anecdotal material on the DUKE delivered by the ever diverse showman, TED HOWE, whose passion for learning has never diminished -- and whose unique voice brings virtuosity to the piano, the recording studio and the stage.