David Benoit Records CD in Steinway Hall Rotunda
On Sunday, January 22, 2012, in New York City, jazz great and Steinway Artist David Benoit digitally recorded all of the piano tracks for his new CD with the Steinway Hall Rotunda set up as a studio environment, marking the first time in the almost 90 year history of the Hall that this has been done. Through the years, the famed Rotunda at Steinway Hall has seen many great performances, however this was the first time that the area was used as a studio to digitally record an entire CD of music (a few live concert settings with an audience have been recorded there, but this was the first time the Rotunda was used specifically/only as a recording studio).
The particular Steinway Concert & Artist piano Benoit chose to play for the recording session has previously been center stage at Avery Fisher Hall and was favored by classical heavyweights including Emanuel Ax, Yefim Bronfman and Lang Lang.
“As a Steinway Artist, I’ve been very fortunate in having performed in Steinway Hall on numerous occasions," said Benoit. "Aside from the great beauty of the Hall itself, I’ve always been intrigued by its incredible acoustics, and the way the most remarkable sound is produced there. For that reason, I chose Steinway Hall to record the piano tracks for my next CD.”
Since 1977, David Benoit’s expansive career as a contemporary jazz pianist has included over 25 solo recordings and 32 total recordings. Among his ‘80s releases, This Side Up, Freedom at Midnight and the Grammy-nominated Every Step of the Way are considered influential genre classics. Among his other Grammy nominations are those for Best Instrumental Composition (for “Dad’s Room,” from 1999’s Professional Dreamer) and Best Large Jazz Ensemble Performance (for the GRP All-Star Big Band).
His prolific output also includes several prominent Charlie Brown related projects (Here’s To You, Charlie Brown: 50 Great Years and the star-studded 40 Years: A Charlie Brown Christmas), reflecting his lifelong passion for the music of original Peanuts composer Vince Guaraldi and solidifying his own role as Guaraldi’s musical heir.
“Despite more than 25 solo recordings over the course of his career, David Benoit continues to innovate in his music and produce fresh, cutting edge contemporary jazz music," said Todd Sanders, Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Steinway & Sons - Americas. "David is a loyal Steinway Artist, and we were honored to work with him to make this recording project a reality. It’s impossible to explain what a great pianist, on a great piano, in a great acoustic environment sounds like – it’s something that must be heard.”
Aside from an hour long session with the media for photographs and interviews, Benoit spent the better part of 16 hours on Sunday with his longtime producer Clark Germain recording the tracks for his highly anticipated new CD.