About Pete Levin
In a diverse music career spanning over 3 decades, keyboardist/arranger Pete Levin has performed and recorded with hundreds of Jazz and Pop artists – including Paul Simon, Annie Lennox, Miles Davis, David Sanborn, Lenny White, Wayne Shorter, Jaco Pastorius, Robbie Robertson and John Scofield – receiving critical accolades for his work during a 15 year association with the legendary Gil Evans, and his 8 year stint with jazz icon Jimmy Giuffre.
While playing French Horn with the Gil Evans Orchestra in the early 70s, Levin brought a Moog Synthesizer to a gig at New York’s Village Vanguard. Already known as a “go to” synthesizer specialist, Pete was at the vanguard of that technology. Gil loved it and Levinâs role was permanently changed as the band transformed itself into the electric/acoustic hybrid ensemble that captivated audiences worldwide for years, winning two GrammyÂ® awards along the way.
An in-demand New York session keyboardist, Levin has also created electronic realizations for hundreds of TV commercials, dramatic series and feature films, including “Missing in Action,” “Lean on Me,” “Silver Bullet,” “Red Scorpion,” “The Color of Money,” “Maniac,” “Spin City,” “Americaâs Most Wanted” and “Star Trek.” In a dizzying array of unrelated commissions, Levin composed orchestral scores for the feature film “Zelimo” and for a stage production of âThe Dybbuk;â? composed the anthem for the 1992 United Nations Earth summit, “The Future is in Our Hands,” performing it twice for the U.N. General Assembly; was awarded the Army Commendation Medal for writing the official military band arrangement of the U.S. Infantry song; arranged and sang lead for the top-40 hit single “Close to You” by The Clams, a Spike Jones tribute band formed with his brother, bassist Tony Levin (Peter Gabriel, King Crimson), drummer Steve Gadd (Eric Clapton, Paul Simon) and GrammyÂ® winning recording engineer Dixon Van Winkle (Paul McCartney, Frank Sinatra). Thirty years later the recording is still a cult classic.
In 1990, Levin signed with Gramavision to release his first solo jazz album, “Party in the Basement,” followed by “A Solitary Man”in 1991. Collaborating with drummer Danny Gottlieb, Pete released “The New Age of Christmas” on Atlantic and “Masters in this Hall” for Gramavision. In the years following, he released four New Age CDs for Alternate Mode Productions, and a variety of eclectic albums for independent labels.
With “DEACON BLUES,” for Motema Music, Pete re-emerged in 2007 as a band leader and master of reinvention, embracing his roots and first love, the Hammond Organ and working with a group of iconic jazz sidemen (Joe Beck, Danny Gottlieb, Tony Levin, Mike DeMicco). Pete followed up in 2008 with “CERTIFIED ORGANIC”, continuing to push the envelope of the classic organ trio.
Pete currently tours with an organ trio that includes guitarist John Cariddi and drummer Harvey Sorgen.