Latest Jeff Chimenti Articles
John Mayer played Jerry Garcia’s Wolf guitar at last night’s Dead & Company show at Citi Field in New York City.
The first East Coast stop of Dead & Company’s Summer Tour 2019 took place at SPAC in Saratoga Springs on Tuesday, where the band had a few setlist surprises in store.
Dead & Company has announced three Positive Legacy volunteer days in New York City, Atlanta and Boulder, Colorado.
Dead & Company wrapped a two-night stand at Wrigley Field in Chicago with a second set featuring “Spanish Jam” and more.
Dead & Company fit their debut version of “To Lay Me Down” into the setlist on Friday night in Chicago at Wrigley Field.
Watch a clip of Dead & Company debuting “It Must Have Been The Roses” at The Gorge Amphitheatre.
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About Jeff Chimenti
Jeff Chimenti was not born into a musical family – he had to wait until he was four, when he began imitating the church organist, to begin his musical career. But he’s been making up for lost time ever since.
By the age of seven he began taking formal lessons from Angela Biggio, a student of both Rudolph Serkin and Leonard Bernstein who also worked with the Merola Program at the S.F. Opera, and continued with her for a decade.
Upon entering high school, the sounds of pop and jazz widened his musical world, and he joined the South San Francisco H.S. jazz band. He was so immediately good that by the age of 13 his teacher was taking him out to play casual gigs – parties, weddings, dances. By the 10th grade, he was playing with the very distinguished College of San Mateo (C.S.M.) jazz band (the Grateful Dead’s Phil Lesh was an alumnus) and the Skyline College Big Band, as well as with community symphonic orchestras.
After graduating high school in 1986, he attended C.S.M. for a year and began hanging out on the San Francisco jazz scene, jamming at the Jazz Workshop with legendary figures like Pony Poindexter. An opportunity to play in Amsterdam ended his formal schooling, and by the early ’90s he was a working musician, playing pop or jazz as required. He was part of En Vogue’s first tour (backing M.C. Hammer), and then returned to the jazz clubs, playing with figures legendary and soon-to-be-famous; John Handy, Denise Perrier, Madeline Eastman, Kurt Elling, Charnett Moffett, Richie Cole, Ernie Watts, James Moody, Art Farmer and more. As he later put it, he was an “on call guy” for a while, and then a “first call guy” for when out-of-towners needed first-rate keyboardists.
He played at the Monterey Jazz Festival for seven years, both with his own trio and in various other groups. He recorded with Steve Smith and Larry Coryell, then with Pete Escovedo, and with Les Claypool’s Flying Frog Brigade.
Although he had never listened to Grateful Dead music, his relationship with saxophonist Dave Ellis introduced him to Bob Weir, and in 1997 he replaced the legendary Johnnie Johnson (of Chuck Berry fame) in Bob’s band “RatDog.” He later was the keyboard player for the Dead’s re-constituted band “The Other Ones.”
In that role, he has become the unquestioned dean of jam band pianists, a gifted player whose reputation is on a steady ascent.
Check out the lineup for the 2019 Hangtown Music Festival, which returns to Placerville, California October 24 – 27.
Current The Marcus King Band keyboardist DeShawn “DVibes” Alexander will soon be “stepping away from the band to work on other musical endeavors.”
Listen to North Mississippi Allstars’ cover of The Staples Singers’ “What You Gonna Do?” featuring Mavis Staples from their upcoming album ‘Up And Rolling.’
Guitarist Anders Osborne tacked on a handful of dates to his 2019 Tour and will play three Bob Dylan tribute concerts with Joan Osborne & Jackie Greene.
Check out the setlist, a recap and The Skinny for Phish’s opening night of their Summer Tour 2019 two-show run in Bangor, Maine.