Home » Musicians » Graham Dechter

Graham Dechter

Guitarist and Los Angeles native Graham Dechter is one of the most promising young jazz musicians on the scene today. Born into a family of musicians, Graham's musical journey began at the age of 5 when he started taking violin lessons and composing various orchestral pieces. His talents as both a violinist and a composer led him to the Idyllwild Arts Academy in Idyllwild, CA, one of three prestigious residential arts high schools in the country. It was there that Graham discovered his passion for guitar and began pursuing his life's calling: jazz.

At Idyllwild Arts, Graham studied improvisation with legendary jazz bassist Marshall Hawkins, an experience that profoundly affected his musical development. Graham also studied privately in Los Angeles with guitarist Jim Fox and took every opportunity to attend live performances of his musical heroes, many with whom he would later go on to perform and record. Upon graduation, Graham entered the Jazz Studies program at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. After completing a year at Eastman, at the invitation of Jeff Hamilton, Graham moved back to Los Angeles to accept the guitar seat in the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra (CHJO). He was 19 at the time and became the youngest member of the acclaimed orchestra.

Now 23, Graham has performed and recorded with some of the most respected names in jazz, including: Ernie Andrews, Regina Carter, Bill Charlap, Gilbert Castellanos, Kurt Elling, John Faddis, Curtis Fuller, Roberta Gambarini, Benny Golson, Wycliffe Gordon, Benny Green, Roy Hargrove, Stefon Harris, Jimmy Heath, Jon Hendricks, Red Holloway, Quincy Jones, Joe Locke, Joe Magnarelli, Russell Malone, Wynton Marsalis, Barbara Morrison, Les McCann, James Moody, John Pizzarelli, Claudio Roditi, Jackie Ryan, Marlena Shaw, Terell Stafford, Byron Stripling, Billy Taylor, Clark Terry, Peter Washington, Frank Wess, Nancy Wilson, Phil Woods and Snooky Young. He has toured throughout the United States and Europe with CHJO and has played at prestigious venues such as The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center and the Hollywood Bowl. Graham has also been a part of major festivals including the Monterey Jazz Festival, the Playboy Jazz Festival, the Detroit Jazz Festival, the Port Townsend Jazz Festival and the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival.

Read more


Album Review
Read more articles
”Graham Dechter's playing is not only a joy to hear, it is a joy to be a part of. I love his warm guitar sound... serious swinging, clean arrangements, a high level of intensity and a dose of beautiful lines... There's just no telling to what wonderful places he will take us.” ~John Clayton

”Once in a blue moon a talent comes along that grabs everyone's attention. Graham is the most recent one to grab MY attention.” ~Jeff Hamilton

“Guitarist Graham Dechter's debut album as a leader could hardly be more charming or enjoyable... a virtuosic young guitarist with nothing to prove.” ~Rick Anderson (All Music Guide)

“Swing-inspired riffs reign supreme on Dechter’s album

Read more



Major Influence

Capri Records


Takin' It There

Capri Records


Right On Time

Capri Records



Shop Amazon

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.