Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
DellaRatta, Rick (Richard Gerald)
DellaRatta, Rick (Richard Gerald), pianist, vocalist, composer; b. Schenectady, NY, 23 October 1933. His father is Richard Gerald DellaRatta Sr. (b. 5/31/33) and his mother is Elizabeth DellaRatta (b. 11/11/37). He has four siblings: Michael DellaRatta (b. 6/27/63), John DellaRatta (b. 1/24/66), Joe DellaRatta (b. 5/5/69 - Jazz Trumpeter/Deceased) and Peter DellaRatta (b. 04/11/74).
He studied at the New England Conservatory, earning a Bachelors in Piano Performance, and a Masters in Jazz Composition. He studied jazz piano with Jackie Byard, Kenny Werner, Charlie Banacos, and Richie Bierach and classical piano with Thomas Stumpf and Stanley Hummell. He studied composition with William Thomas McKinnley. He has studied voice with John Mase, Carlton Doctor and Ilene Bush.
Through his life long endeavor to help advance people to their highest potential through the understanding of Jazz as well as spreading peace worldwide through his "Jazz for Peace World Tour," Rick DellaRatta is considered to be an innovator and a visionary. His unique and original piano playing and composing has been compared in print to Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Bill Evans, McCoy Tyner, Keith Jarrett, Joe Zawinul, Horace Silver, Oscar Peterson and Thelonious Monk while his signature vocal sound and style has been likened to Chet Baker, Billy Holiday, Joao Gilberto, Ivan Lins, Michael Franks and Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Rick DellaRatta has performed as a leader in legendary jazz clubs such as Sweet Basil, Ronnie Scotts, The Blue Note, Birdland and The Five Spot. Rick is currently sharing his musical message worldwide through his "Jazz for Peace World Tour which began on October 7, 2001 with Eddie Gomez, Lenny White and Paquito D'Rivera has continued on with a special concert at the United Nations featuring Rick's International Jazz Band. The tour included The United States, The Middle East, The United Kingdom, Asia, Europe and South Africa. The "Jazz for Peace" tour will be Rick's first ever "World Tour" however recent performances by Rick outside the U.S. have included Japan, Hong Kong, Bulgaria, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, Italy and Germany. Recent Festival appearances as a leader include headlining at The Savannah Jazz Festival, The Kansas City Jazz and Blues Festival, Ottawa International Jazz Festival, The Empire State Jazz Festival, Coleman Hawkins Jazz Festival, The Lake George Jazz Festival, The Sofia Jazz Festival in Bulgaria and The Taketa Jazz Festival in Japan. Other festival appearances include The Loft Jazz Festival in New York's world famous Blue Note for the Panasonic Jazz Festival, DuMarier Jazz Festival in Toronto and Summer Fest in Milwaukee.
Rick DellaRatta performed as a leader with Jazz greats such as Eddie Gomez, Lenny White, Dave Leibman, Paquito D'Rivera, Rufus Reid, Billy Hart, Bobby Watson, Nick Brignola, Sonny Fortune, Elliot Zigmund, Idris Muhhamad, Will Lee, Chris Parker, Ray Mantilla, Al Foster and Victor Lewis.
The award winning Singer/Instrumentalist has also agreed to an exclusive endorsement deal with Earthworks Microphones. After receiving a Masters in music at the New England Conservatory, Rick toured with Herb Reed and The Platters throughout the Caribbean, Bahamas, Bermuda, Mexico and Jamaica. He also toured as pianist with the Artie Shaw Orchestra throughout the U.S. and Canada, and as opening act and MC for jazz legend Dizzy Gillespie. A native of upstate New York, Rick now resides in New York City. Rick DellaRatta's achievements as a world class musician as well as his musical message through Jazz to create peace and sharpen the minds of all mankind to it's highest potential were summed up recently when he was referred to as "Mr. Jazz" by President George W. Bush.
Take It Or Leave It (1995); Thought Provoking (1997); Live in Brazil & The Blue Note (1999); Alone Together (2001); Jazz at Christmas Time (2002)
Karen Shane: It's Anybody's Spring (1997); Fukumi: Let me Introduce Myself (2002)
KLON, KSDS, KCBX, WWVW, KTAO. KGOU, KCSM, WNOP, KBEZ, WWOZ, WWVU, WGBM, WXXI, WFAE, WCPN, WUCF, WFSS, WSJZ, WSMC, WBGU, WAMC, WHRL, WXLE, WCBD, WRPI, WSPN WCPN.
WRGB, WTEN, WNYT and the Dennis Charles Documentary - "Unfinished Conversation."
Feature articles and interviews:
Downbeat, Jazziz, Jazz Times, Jazz Improv, The Savannah Times, Positivibes, LaPaz Journal, The Boston Pheniox, The Troy Record, The Schenectady Gazette, Der Standard - Vienna, Austria , The Washington Post, Rochester Times, Hot House, Jamaica Herald, St Paul Pioneer Press, Minn Star Tribune, LA Times, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Carmel, The Saratogian, The Times Union, A Place for Jazz, Kansas City Star, St Albans Observer, LeDroit - Ottawa, Hong Kong Commercial Daily, Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, Helsingin Sanomat - Helsinki, Finland, Diario do Nordeste - Fortaleza, Brazil.
Features and interviews on the Internet:
The 2000 MAC Award for Recording Of The Year for his double album live CD release titled "Live in Brazil & The Blue Note".
1998 and 1999 ASCAP Popular Award Winner
1997 Back Stage Bistro Award Winner for outstanding singer/instrumentalist.
Louise Johnson Jazz Management