Robert Gluck

All About Jazz user Robert Gluck

Bob Gluck is an expressive pianist joining lyricism and abstraction, and an innovator in the use of electronics.

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Pianist Bob Gluck is a pianist whose repertoire spans jazz, live electronic music, and avant-garde concert music. Karl Ackermann (All About Jazz) wrote: “As a composer and player, Gluck ranks with the likes of Andrew Hill and Cecil Taylor… Something Quiet is completely original, artistically spontaneous, and intellectually challenging.” Allan Kozinn (New York Times) wrote that Gluck is “an accomplished jazz pianist” who played with “virtuosic fluidity.” The latest of Gluck's nine recordings are “Textures and Pulsations,” duets with fellow pianist Aruan Ortiz (2012) and “Tropelets” with Andrew Sterman (2014), both on Ictus Records.

Raised in New York as a conservatory student and political activist, Gluck spent many years away from music, leading a life as a rabbi. Bob Gluck’s return to composing electronic music in 1995 and to the piano in 2005 marked a new beginning in his unusual career as a musician, educator, and writer. With influences as diverse as Herbie Hancock, Jimi Hendrix, Johann Sebastian Bach, Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, and Karlheinz Stockhausen, Gluck has discovered a way to marry interests in electronic music with his love of jazz. Gluck designs his own software interfaces for interactive musical performance and multimedia installation, including the sound installations 'Layered Histories' (2004), an immersive sound and video environment with Cynthia Rubin and 'Sounds of a Community' (2002), in which visitors trigger and shape recorded sounds by interacting with electronic musical sculptures.

Gluck’s musical training is from the Julliard, Manhattan, and Crane schools of Music, the State University of New York at Albany (BA, 1977) and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (MFA, 2001). His music has been performed internationally. His writings have appeared in Computer Music Journal, Leonardo Music Journal, Leonardo, Organized Sound, Tav + (Israel), Journal SEAMUS, Review Zaman (France), Magham (Iran), Ideas Sonicas (Mexico), and elsewhere.

He is author of “You’ll Know When You Get There: Herbie Hancock and the Mwandishi Band” (2012) and the forthcoming “Revolutionary Ensembles,” both on University of Chicago Press.

Bob Gluck is Associate Professor of Music at The University at Albany. For more info, see:

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