Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
Parillo, Joe (Joseph Michael)
Joe began playing the piano at the age of nine and developed an avid interest in jazz by the age of eighteen. Parillo received his Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from Rhode Island College in 1975 and his Masters of Music in Composition and Jazz from the New England Conservatory in 1988. He has been working as a professional musician (pianist/composer/arranger and musical director) since 1970 with local, national and international groups and organizations. Since 1975 he studied privately and in workshops with internationally recognized musicians. Focusing on piano performance, composition/arranging and improvisation, his studies took him to Boston, New York, Brazil, Italy, New Zealand, and Germany.
Joe has studied with international jazz performers and composers Charles Banacos, Jerry Bergonzi, Michael Gibbs, Pat Metheny, Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette, Hal Crook, Ran Blake, Thomas McKinley, George Russell, Bill Dobbins, and Paul Schmeling. He has also studied Latin American music with Allain Mallet and Roberto Arias, who have worked with Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Stan Getz, Keith Jarrett, Dave Brubeck, and Gary Burton. Parillo has performed in Brazil, Italy, Germany, and New Zealand and has played with the Glenn Miller Orchestra and vibraphonist Jay Hoggard. He has written and arranged music for theater and film, his most recent works have aired on WSBE-TV and the SciFi Channel's "First Wave". Parillo has been commissioned to write three jazz ballets and has arranged and recorded over twenty-five full-length children's productions. He is a member of the BMI Lehman-Engel Musical Theater Workshops in New York. He is currently President of the Rhode Island chapter of the International Association of Jazz Educators.
Parillo began his teaching career in 1977 as a Rehabilitation Skills Instructor with the Education Collaborative of Greater Boston (1997-80). He then went on to become the Music Coordinator and Instructor with the State of Rhode Island Prison System (1978-80); Music Teacher grades K-9, in the Woonsocket/North Smithfield School System (1980-82); full-time Lecturer at the Community College of Rhode Island (1981-88); Adjunct Music Faculty at the University of Rhode Island (1985-90); and as Artist in Residence at the Conservatory at the Wheeler School (1987-90). In 1990, Parillo began his academic career at the University of Rhode Island, where he began as a full-time lecturer and has since achieved the title of Associate Professor with tenure, well on his way to Full Professor. In addition to his duties as Associate Professor to undergraduate and graduate students, Parillo is the Coordinator of the Rhode Island Music Educators high school jazz festival, the Director of the Jazz & World Music Festival, held annually since 1993, and the Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Rhode Island, an accomplishment he has sustained for the past seventeen years. He is also responsible for the initiation and implementation of the Jazz Studies specialization of the Bachelor of Arts in Music and for the Jazz Studies minor that the University now offers.
SongBook (1983); Clouds (1987); Almost Carefree (1994); Block Island Summer (1996); Birth of the Kakalla (1996); Angels Gather (1997); Morning In The Garden (1998); Beatnik Oblivion (1998); Meditations of the Heart (1999); SandBox (2001);
Parillo wrote and produced a MasterClass CD, "Using Altered Scales to Create Improvised Lines," for the July 1998 issue of JazzPlayer Magazine;
He has recorded two CDs with the Worcester-based Sonic Explorers.
Recordings as Arranger/Producer:
for Kaleidoscope Theater Company 1980-87: "Hansel and Gretel," "Goldilocks," "Beauty and the Beast," "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," "Little Red Riding Hood," "Rumpelstiltskin," "Pied Piper," "Cinderella," "Pinocchio," "Robin Hood," "Alice In Wonderland," and "The Emperor's New Clothes."
"First Wave: Legacy," 2000. Composition licensed for four episodes of "First Wave: Legacy" Sci-Fi Channel, Cable Television Network. Pearson Television
"Rhode Island Remembers," 1996. Commissioned, film score to 70-minute documentary, WSBE-TV. Providence, Rhode Island.
National Weather Channel, 1986. Commissioned, various musical commercial spots for television. Weather Services, Inc., Boston, Massachusetts.
"A Case for Holistic Health," 1983. Commissioned, Musical score for hour-long educational video for the Cranston Memorial Hospital, Cranston, Rhode Island.
"Beauty and the Beast," 1999. Commissioned, full-length musical for the stage. South County Center for the Arts Children's Theater.
"The Frog and the Scorpion," 1996. Collaboration, Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) Festival of 10-minute Musicals, New York, NY.
"Lord Ravensbane," 1996. Collaboration, Staged reading, full-length musical score. University of Rhode Island Theatre Department, Kingston, Rhode Island.
"Robin Hood," 1995. Commissioned, full-length jazz ballet for the stage. South County Center for the Arts Children's Theater.
"Alice In Wonderland," 1994. Commissioned, full-length jazz ballet for the stage. South County Center for the Arts Children's Theater.
"With A Twist," 1993. Commissioned, full-length musical theatre production. Composer, arranger, lyricist. South County Center for the Arts Children's Theater.
"Tips On Practicing Improvisation," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Winter 2000-01, p21.
"Considerations from the Bottom: Bass Lines," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Fall 2000, p27.
"Who's Who in Rhode Island Jazz," Consortium Publishing, 2nd edition: (to be released 2003).
"Transcribing Solos from Recordings," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Spring/Summer 2000, p35.
"Creating Exercises for Modal Improvisation," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Winter 2000, p35.
"Chord Scales for Modal Improvisation," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Fall 1999, p32.
"Creating Exercises for Modal Improvisation," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Fall 1999, p39.
"TriTone Substitution," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Spring 1999, p.26-27.
"Relationships and Reharmonization of the Dominant 7th Chord," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Winter, 1999, p31-34.
"The Jazz Minor Scale," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Fall 1998, p.40-41.
"Jazz and Improvisation," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Winter 1997. Theoretical Analysis and Interpretation of the Improvised Blues Melody, p44-45
"Chord Tones and the ii7, V7 Chord Progression," Rhode Island Music Educators Review: Spring 1998. Theoretical Analysis and Practice Techniques for the most used harmonic concept in Jazz, p30-31.
"Using Altered Scales to Create Improvised Lines," JazzPlayer Magazine: June/July 1998. Text and Music manuscript accompanying the JazzPlayer MasterClass CD, p33-41.
"Jazz History," A Comprehensive Outline, 1988, revised 1993. Currently used in MUS106, History of Jazz, University of Rhode Island. Kaleidoscope Theater Company 1982-90. Commissioned, twenty full-length musical scores for the stage, Providence, Rhode Island.
Awards and honors:
2004: Winner, 2004 Providence Phoenix Music Poll, Jazz Artist.
2002: Grammy nomination for Best Instrumental Composition, "One Day In January" From the SandBox CD, Joe Parillo composer.
2002: Outstanding Outreach, University of Rhode Island.
2001: Outstanding Outreach, University of Rhode Island; Elected Member to the Chopin Club of Rhode Island;
Nominated, 2001 Providence Phoenix Music Poll, Jazz Artist; Composition selected for Jazz Essentials CD Compilation, Mp3.com.
2000: Winner, 2000 Providence Phoenix Music Poll, Jazz Artist.
1999: Winner, 1999 Worcester Phoenix Music Poll, Jazz Artist; Nominated URI Teaching Excellence Award.
1998: Steinway Artist Endorsement.
1997: Elected to membership in Phi Kappa Lambda national honorary music society.
1996: Elected to membership in Tau Beta Sigma, Band Sorority, honorary member; Nominated URI Teaching Excellence Award.
1994: 1st place Winners: University of Rhode Island Big Band, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, New England Intercollegiate Jazz Festival.
1991: DARE Award (Drug Awareness Resistance Education).
1990: DARE Award. Billboard Magazine, Top 10 Winner, International Songwriting Contest, (International Music Trades Magazine).
1988: Winner, National Songwriters Association, Washington, DC.