Home » Jazz Musicians » Phil Grenadier

Phil Grenadier

Throughout a career that spans nearly three decades, trumpeter Phil Grenadier has emerged as one of jazz’s most imaginative and innovative players. His two albums as leader, 2000’s Sweet Transients and 2003’s Playful Intentions, have won him copious international acclaim, while his collaborations with a broad array of notable musicians demonstrate the raw talent and adventurousness that led the San Jose Mercury News to call him “a trumpeter of rare fluency and depth.”

The restless creative spirit that distinguishes Phil Grenadier’s work was instilled early in life. Growing up in a musical family in San Francisco, he and his brothers Larry and Steve were all introduced to trumpet in childhood by their father Albert, who handed his lifelong love of music down to his sons.

“My dad’s passion for the music had such a big impact on me, seeing how much it meant to him and how he lost himself in it,” Phil states. “I feel blessed to have been introduced to music that way, with all of us listening and sharing the experience of discovering music together.”

Although Larry and Steve eventually gravitated towards bass and guitar, respectively, Phil wholeheartedly embraced the possibilities of trumpet and made the instrument the focus of his musical life. The three brothers played together in their high-school band and various other combos, performing together at such renowned festivals as the Monterey Jazz Festival, the Russian River Jazz Festival and the San Francisco Jazz Festival.

Meanwhile, Phil’s rapidly-developing trumpet skills won him considerable attention around his hometown. By the time he was 16, he was working regularly as a sideman, performing alongside such legends as Ella Fitzgerald, Mel Torme, George Shearing, Tony Bennett, Carlos Santana, James Brown, Sammy Davis Jr., Dionne Warwick and Steve Smith’s Vital Information. He was just 17 when he was voted Best Jazz Soloist by both Down Beat magazine and the California Music Educators Association.

A move to New York in 1988 helped to further broaden Grenadier’s musical horizons. There, he taught jazz trumpet at the Mannes College of Music, and worked extensively with noted saxophonist/composer Bob Belden, playing on two of Belden’s Blue Note albums and numerous live gigs.

“Working with Bob was one of the first breaks I got, and he was a very strong influence on me,” Grenadier notes. “Just to see how hard Bob worked, and how intensely he listened, was a big influence on me.”

Another strong influence during Phil’s New York years was his work with pianist Richie Beirach, with whom he worked extensively in a duo situation. “That was a great learning experience,” he recalls. “Performing with such a harmonic genius reinforced my natural affinity for ‘outside’ improvising, and spurred me to dig deeper in myself.”

Read more

Tags

11
Album Review

Dial and DeRosa: Keep Swingin'

Read "Keep Swingin'" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Keep Swingin', a splendid new album from pianist Garry Dial and drummer Rich DeRosa, features “the music of Charlie Banacos." Charlie who? you may ask. And the answer is, there are jazz educators, and then there was Charlie Banacos, whose talent and ingenuity in the classroom influenced and inspired countless jazz musicians for more than fifty years. During that time, he designed more than a hundred courses of study and wrote half a dozen books on composition and improvisation.

5
Album Review

Club d'Elf: You Never Know

Read "You Never Know" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki


You Never Know is the Club d'Elf studio album that captures the whirling, overlapping orbits of acoustic, electric and exotic sounds of the floating improvisational collective, which has recorded and performed together for more than two decades, with crisp studio clarity. But more importantly, You Never Know celebrates light born from darkness. Bassist and bandleader Mike Rivard, the sole constant in the collective's 24-year run, suffered a near-death experience from a pulmonary embolism which struck him while he ...

12
Album Review

Club D'Elf: You Never Know

Read "You Never Know" reviewed by Chris May


Near-death experiences can reboot the mind, separating the important from the trivial. It seems to have worked like that for bassist and composer Mike Rivard, founder and leader of Boston's world-dub-jazz band Club D'Elf. A few years back, Rivard was nearly felled by a pulmonary embolism while seeking spiritual insight in the Amazonian rain forest. A long, dark period of depression followed, before Rivard emerged recharged into the light, having been sustained in large part by gnawa, the Moroccan trance ...

7
Album Review

Phil Grenadier: Shimmer

Read "Shimmer" reviewed by Glenn Astarita


Boston, MA, based trumpeter Phil Grenadier is a highly regarded jazz artisan, performing and recording with famous crooners, rock bands and ingratiating his wares within numerous progressive jazz fronts. He's also taught at New York City's prestigious Mannes College of Music and for the most part, has enjoyed status as a go-to session ace amid a stockpile of impressive accomplishments. His leadership skills and consummate technical gifts shine radiantly on Shimmer. Indeed, the musicians must have had ...

3
Album Review

Phil Grenadier / Bruno Raberg Duo: Plunge

Read "Plunge" reviewed by Ian Patterson


Maybe only a pirate radio station would be uninhibited enough to play duo improvisations such as these served up by trumpeter {Phil Grenadier and acoustic bassist Bruno Råberg. However, such mainstream disinterest should be considered a backhanded compliment and is perhaps reason enough to check it out. Plunge is an apt title for music inspired by the panoply of emotions suggested to Råberg by saxophonist Ornette Coleman's “Lonely Woman." This intimate dialogue explores extensive emotional terrain, with Råberg's sound design ...

1
Album Review

Phil Grenadier / Bruno Raberg Duo: Plunge

Read "Plunge" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


Two men are responsible for every sound heard on the avant-leaning Plunge, but this record shouldn't be mistaken for a naked, take-me-as-I-am duo date. Bassist Bruno Råberg and trumpeter Phil Grenadier take full advantage of technology to create piquant aural landscapes that expand and expound on the very nature of man-to-man dialogue. This pair plunges into the abyss of the mind as they explore themselves, their surroundings, their instruments and their connection to one another, but this ...

1
Album Review

Phil Grenadier / Bruno Raberg Duo: Plunge

Read "Plunge" reviewed by Chris Mosey


The inspiration for this album was saxophonist Ornette Coleman's “Lonely Woman." It gave Swedish bassist, Bruno Råberg, what he calls an “aural vision": “I 'heard' a rich, erratic, and busy soundscape in which the beautiful melody would live. I saw images of desolate streets and a lonely person's inner turmoil, conflicting emotions and despair." Coleman's hauntingly melancholic composition was first heard on his The Shape Of Jazz To Come (Atlantic, 1959), when free jazz was in its ...

Read more articles
153

Performance / Tour

Brian Patneaude Quartet with Phil Grenadier @ The Van Dyck, Schenectady, NY - 12/20/03

Brian Patneaude Quartet with Phil Grenadier @ The Van Dyck, Schenectady, NY - 12/20/03

Source: All About Jazz

This Saturday, December 20th, trumpeter and Fresh Sound New Talent recording artist Phil Grenadier will join the Brian Patneaude Quartet for a special performance at The Van Dyck (237 Union St. Schenectady, NY). The group will be performing the original music of Phil Grenadier as well as brand new material written by the members of the BPQ.

Originally from San Francisco, Phil Grenadier has made quite a name for himself since relocating to the East Coast in 1988. The Boston-based ...

135

Performance / Tour

Brian Patneaude Quartet + 1 featuring Phil Grenadier @ Justin's - Albany, NY 7/14/02

Brian Patneaude Quartet + 1 featuring Phil Grenadier @ Justin's - Albany, NY 7/14/02

Source: All About Jazz

ALBANY, NY - On Sunday, July 14th, trumpeter and Fresh Sound New Talent recording artist Phil Grenadier will join the Brian Patneaude Quartet for a performance at Justin's Restaurant (301 Lark St., Albany NY).

Brother of bassist Larry Grenadier, the Boston based musician has worked with a plethora of high profile jazz artists including Freddie Hubbard, Bob Belden, Chris Potter, Richie Beirach, Terumasa Hino, Mulgrew Miller, Billy Hart, The Bob Nieske 3, The Matt Gordy Quartet, The Allan Chase Quartet, ...

Primary Instrument

Trumpet

Credentials/Background

I teach interested students!

Clinic/Workshop Information

Creativity, Open-ness & how to get there.

Photos

Music

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Keep Swingin'

Outside in Music
2024

buy

You Never Know

Face Pelt Records
2022

buy

Whisper Of The...

Self Produced
2020

buy

Metropolitan Sketches

Self Produced
2020

buy

Shimmer

Fresh Sound Records
2014

buy

Plunge

Orbis Music
2012

buy

Videos

Similar

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.