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Bob Merrill

BOB MERRILL is noted for his engaging vocal style, combined with great talent as a jazz trumpeter, pianist, arranger and bandleader. His music has been heard around the world-at clubs and in concerts, in films and on television, and on recordings as a leader and sideman.

Born and raised in Manhattan, he studied with Red Rodney as a teenager. While in college, Bob led the Harvard Jazz Band, performing regularly around New England and touring with them overseas. While earning his degree in music at Harvard, he also attended New England Conservatory, studying and performing with legendary pianist Jaki Byard and his Apollo Stompers Big Band. In 1981 Bob became a teaching fellow for Harvard’s Seminars in Jazz course and founded the Jazz at the Pudding concert series at the famed Hasty Pudding Club, fronting the house band and presenting many prominent Jazz artists, among them Lee Konitz, Warne Marsh, Al Hibbler, Sheila Jordan and Archie Shepp.

In 1986, Merrill returned to New York where he opened Hip Pocket Studios, a 48-track recording facility specializing in music for commercials and host for recordings by artists such as Patti LaBelle, Sting, Art Garfunkel, Peter, Paul and Mary as well as television clients including The Cosby Show on NBC. He produced three CDs for his father-in-law, legendary pianist and composer Joe Bushkin, for whom he served as trumpeter, musical director and arranger. Together they appeared at New York’s Tavern on the Green and the Supper Club, and L.A.’s Jazz Bakery, in addition to engagements in Las Vegas, Palm Springs and jazz festivals around the country.

In 1997, Bob released his first album as a leader, Catch as Catch Can, and he was featured on the American Movie Classics channel leading the AMC Orchestra in the television series Gotta Dance! Bob’s second CD, Got A Bran’ New Suit, featuring Bill Charlap and an all-star lineup, was released in 2005. He has appeared in concert with Peter Nero and the Philadelphia Pops, as well as the Nassau Pops, and the Boston Pops at Symphony Hall. His third album, Christmastime at the Adirondack Grill, has become a Yuletide season favorite.

Cheerin’ Up the Universe is Bob Merrill’s fourth album, released by Accurate Records on September 4th, 2015. The album is an eclectic mix of modern popular classics with Jazz interpretations featuring many notable musicians such as John Medeski on piano, Drew Zingg on guitar, Nicki Parrott on bass and vocals plus George Schuller on drums. Trombonist Roswell Rudd and saxophonists Harry Allen and Russ Gershon also appear, along with pianist Matthew Fries. View the video here.

Bob Merrill’s charismatic musical style has been hailed by critics and his band never fails to get a crowd on its feet.