Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Galper, Hal (Harold Galper)

Galper, Hal [Harold Galper], piano, author, educator; b. Salem, MA, 18 April 1938. Galper, Hal (Harold), pianist; b. Salem, Mass., April 18, 1938. He studied with Margaret Chaloff (privately) and Ray Santisi (at Berklee). Influenced by McCoy Tyner and Oscar Peterson.

As a scholarship student at Berklee School of Music in the '50's, he won an Artists Diploma and later a Distinguished Alumnus Award. He began hanging out at Herb Pomeroy's club, The Stables, listening to Jaki Byard, Alan Dawson and Sam Rivers. He started sitting in and became the house pianist at The Stables and later on, at Connelly's. He played over the years with Johnny Hodges, Roy Eldridge, James Moody, Art Blakey, Sam Rivers, The Bobby Hutcherson-Harold Land Quintet. For a time, he describes himself as a free player, which wasn't popular in Boston so, in 1960, he went to Paris, but when he only played four gigs in two months he returned to Boston discouraged with music and didn't perform for two years. Once he returned to activity, he learned that Chet Baker was coming to town and looking for a piano player. He sat in with Baker at the Jazz Workshop and was hired to tour and record, including a residence in New York City, where he left Baker when he wanted to play more modern repertory and went back to New England in 1966 and played in the house band at Lenny's On The Turnpike. Phil Woods was the guest soloist there for a week. In 1967, he went back to New York again and was reunited with Woods for a couple of one-nighters. He played short engagements and one-nighters with Donald Byrd, Stan Getz, Chuck Mangione, Joe Henderson and Al Cohn and Zoot Sims and recorded three albums under his own name.

In 1973, rumor had it that Cannonball Adderley was looking for a keyboard player to replace George Duke. Galper's audition was held on the bandstand at the Jazz Workshop in Boston, playing one set a night for the weekend of Cannonball's engagement. He was hired for three years, touring fifty out of fifty two weeks a year until he left in 1975. He decided to concentrate on acoustic piano; he wheeled his Fender Rhodes to a dock on the Hudson and threw it into the river! In the next year and a one half, with the support of a NEA grant, he formed a quintet with Randy and Michael Brecker, Wayne Dockery and Billy Hart. They made a debut at Sweet Basil and other clubs in New York, and at the 1978 Berlin Jazz Festival. In 1978 he returned to working as a sideman, with Lee Konitz, Nat Adderley, John Scofield and Slide Hampton. Sitting in for a week at the Village Vanguard with The Phil Woods Quartet in September of 1979 led to the inception of his 10 year stint (1980-1990) as pianist-composer-arranger. He left the Woods group in August 1990 to start touring and recording with his own trio. Since that time, he has been on the road six months a year. His trio in the late 1990s included Steve Ellington on drums and Jeff Johnson on bass.

He has taught at the New School 1990-1994, 1996; Jamey Aebersold Jazz Camps 1980-1995; Bud Shank Jazz Camp 1992-1994; Stanford University Jazz Camp 1991; and has been a guest lecturer and clinician at over one hundred colleges and universities (including Harvard and the Mannheim Conservatory) and at IAJE conferences in 1990, 1991, 1994, 1996.

His recording Invitation To A Concert won #2 position in the Jazz Times Critics Poll of the top ten recordings of 1990; Redux '78 won #5 position in the Jazz Times Critics Poll of1991. His "Gotham Seranade" won Billboard magazine's Certificate Of Achievement in 1990 & 1991. He has over one-hundred compositions recorded. He has received grants from the Lila Wallace-Readers Digest Foundation, New England Foundation Of The Arts, New York State Council Of The Arts, Arts Midwest, Meet The Composers Fund, and others.

Maybeck Duets w/ Hal Galper & Jeff Johnson; Fugue State; The Guerilla Band (1972); Wild Bird (1971); Inner Journey (1973); Reach Out (1976); Now Hear This (1977); Ivory Forest; Dreamsville; Just Us (1993); Rebop; Naturally; Speak With A Single Voice (1978); Live At Vartan Jazz; At The Cafe De Copains; Live At Port Townsend; Children Of The Night; Portrait (1989); Live At Maybeck Hall (1990); Invitation To A Concert (1990); Redux '78 (1978); Tippin' (1992); Rebop (1995)
As sideperson:
Chet Baker: The Most Important Album Of 1964-65, Baby Breeze, Live At Fat Tuesday's; Cannonball Adderley: Inside Straight, Love, Sex, And The Zodiac, Pyramid; Nat Adderley: Double Exposure; Phil Woods: Birds Of A Feather, Live At The Vanguard, Integrity, Heaven, The Best Of Phil Woods, Bop Stew, Evolution, Boquet, Flash, All Birds Children, Phil Woods Quintet Meets Dizzy Gillespie, It Happened In Pescara; Carlo Atti & The Hal Galper Trio: Sweet Beat Blues; Bobby Hutcherson and Harold Land: Live At The Festival,  11th Annual International Jazz Festival Ljubjana; John Scofield: Roughhouse; Franco Ambrosetti: Heartbop; Lee Konitz: Windows; Tom Harrell: Open Air; Randy Becker: Score; Sam Rivers: A New Conception; Pete Yellen: It's The Right Thing; Bill Goodwin: No Method; Saxomania: Airegin; Rick Stone:Blues For Nobody; Rossler/Goos: Fusion; Putte Wickman & The Hal Galper Trio: Miss Oedipus; Jazz in the Classroom Vol. I (c. 1957; Berklee)

Arnold Jay Smith: Profile. Hal Galper, in: Down Beat (16.Jun.1977)
Hal Galper: Forward Motion, in: Down Beat (Jan.1982)
Hal Galper: Pro Session. Scales with Rhythmic and Melodic Forward Motion, in: Down Beat (Nov.1982)
J. Levenson: Hal Galper. A Home in the Woods, in: Down Beat (Nov.1982)
Becca Pulliam: Hal Galper - "If I Didn't Care", in: The Piano Stylist & Jazz Workshop, Apr/May 1990 (transcribed solo)
Chuck Berg: Hal Galper, in: Down Beat (Mar.1991
David Zych: Hal Galper. No More Compromises, in: Jazz Times (Feb.1992)
Hal Galper: Pro Session. Melody and Embellishment, in: Down Beat (Mar.1991); part 2, in: Down Beat (Apr.1991)
Hal Galper: Jazz in Academia. Another Look, in: Jazz Changes (Autumn 1994)
Hal Galper: The Social Contract. Presentation and Creativity, in: Down Beat (Dec.1994)
Hal Galper: The Crisis in Jazz, in: Jazz Changes (Spring 1998)

Other Publications by Hal Galper:
"Thoughts on Jazz Education" LETTER FROM EVANS

Music Publications:
Jazz Piano Voicings & Comping
Jamey Aebersold

Original Compositions:
Straight Ahead Jazz Fakebook
Piano Score ("If I Didn't Care"):
The Piano Stylist
Play-Along Recordings (for Jamey Aebersold):
17 All-Time Standards, Vol. 25 JA Records
Bossa Novas, Vol. 31 JA Records
Ballads, Vol. 32 JA Records
Blue Note . Vol. 38 JA Records
Swing, Swing, Swing, Vol. 39 JA Records
Night & Day, Vol. 51 JA Records
Yesterdays, Vol. 55 JA Records
Unforgettable, Vol. 58 JA Records
Wes Montgomery, Vol. 62 JA Records

Hal Galper's Trio:
Artists Diploma: Berklee College of Music
Distinguished Alumnus Award: Berklee College of Music
"Invitation To A Concert" won #2 position in the Jazz Times Critics Poll of the top ten recordings of 1990.
"Redux '78" won #5 position in the Jazz Times Critics Poll of1991.
"Best of '91 Performance", #4 position in top five, Earshot Magazine's Critics Choice.
"Best of '91 Performance #8 position in the top t en, The Boston Globe.
"1996 Award For Outstanding Service to Jazz Education" IAJE
Mr. Galper's composition:"Gotham Seranade" won Billboard magazine's Certificate Of Achievement in 1990 & 1991. He has over one-hundred ori ginal compositions recorded.

National Endowment Of The Arts.
Lila Wallace-Readers Digest Foundation
Arts International Fund For U.S. Artists
The New England Foundation Of The Arts
National Jazz Service Organization
New York State Council Of The Arts
Delaware Arts Alliance
Arts Midwest
Mid-America Arts Alliance
New England Foudation Of The Arts
Southern Arts Federation
Western States Arts Federation
Meet The Composers Fund

Contact information:
Hal Galper
Box 81,
Cochecton, NY 12726
914: 932-8798 Tel-Fax

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