Keyboardist Michael Gallant Joins Linda Oh and Chris Infusino to Release debut Michael Gallant Trio Album
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Four bars before his solo on "Completely," the title track from the Michael Gallant Trio's debut album, the man behind the piano dug into the tune's dirty rock riff and focused on a dual purpose - a) to pour so much of himself into that single solo that, if a future child of his were to know him only through this recording, he or she would come away with a real sense of their father's personality and spirit, and b) to have so much fun in the process.
An intense directive for sure, but one that fits with the guts, passion, virtuosity, and spirit of adventure with which Gallant approached every element of this release.
Completely features nine original works, as well as a cover of Pearl Jam's "Go" that channels equal parts Eddie Vedder and McCoy Tyner. Throughout his compositions and arrangements, Gallant sought to alchemize the energy of the Seattle grunge band with the grace of Bill Evans, the timeless melodicism of Leonard Bernstein, and the improvisational astronautics of Medeski Martin and Wood - all within the vehicle of the traditional jazz trio. Assembling the right team was key for hitting such a mark.
Gallant leads the trio on acoustic and electric pianos, with DownBeat Critics Pole winner Linda Oh on bass and New York session drummer Chris Infusino on percussion. Completely was recorded and mixed by Grammy award-winning engineer Mario J McNulty and was co-produced by Gallant and his wife and frequent musical collaborator Rachel Rossos.
Gallant began his professional playing career as a teenager, gigging throughout the Washington, DC area, touring with a traditional jazz band to New Orleans (and playing stride piano at Preservation Hall), creating music for his first professional theater production, and winning classical piano competitions at two DC-area conservatories before graduating from high school. After studying music and anthropology at Columbia University, he became an editor for Keyboard magazine, penning cover stories on artists like Herbie Hancock, Billy Joel, Dave Brubeck, Ben Folds, and Tori Amos. With Completely, Gallant focuses the wisdo gained from such journalistic mentorship sessions into his own recorded music.