Biography

Michael Ford born on February 3, 1953 and grew up in Skippack, Pennsylvania. He began studying the piano at the age of 4, and performed his first public concert at age 6. He made his debut as soloist with a symphony orchestra at 14. He studied piano with Ralph Kemmerer, Eleanor Sokoloff and Susan Starr. He studied composition with Romeo Cascarino and Theodore Antonio, and electronic music with Andrew Rudin. He also played interesting (and not so interesting) rock music on many kinds of keyboards in Vacuum Pact, Pegasus and Children, finding a particular interest in the British progressive “Art Rock” genre.

In the ‘80’s, he toured as pianist for the Paul Taylor Dance Company and performed both as soloist and with the orchestra in their Broadway seasons. He recorded the two piano version of Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” with the Paul Taylor Company for PBS “Dance in America” series as well as “Great Performances” for the Joffrey Ballet.

After exploring other worlds of music including jazz, blues, folk, and experimental with various ensembles, he decided to make recordings of his own music as a keyboard soloist. He has developed a compositional style that draws on these influences but is rooted in a classical aesthetic that stems from his dedication to the piano.

In the summer of 1993 he performed at Lincoln Center using his electronic keyboards with fellow recording artist/composer John Greenland.

In 1995-1996 he co-wrote a musical based on the life of Harry Houdini with composer/lyricist Carl Kusnell.

In 1996 he met Sandra Boynton and collaborated with the children’s book author and illustrator, creating a collection of children’s songs entitled “Rhinoceros Tap” in the form of a book/CD for Workman Publishing Co.

Their next children’s book/CD entitled “Philadelphia Chickens” released in 2002 was Grammy nominated and was on the New York Times best-seller list for close to a year It featured Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline, Laura Linney, Kevin Bacon, Eric Stoltz, Patti LuPone, Natasha Ritchardson, Scott Bakula and many others each singing an original song. Like “Rhinoceros Tap”, he co-wrote, arranged and performed all of the music as well as co-directed and engineered the recordings.

Their next collaboration in 2005, entitled “Dog Train” included Alison Krauss, Blues Traveler Hootie & the Blowfish, John Ondrasik of Five For Fighting, The Bacon Brothers with Mickey Hart, Kate Winslet & “Weird Al” Yankovic, Mark Lanegan, Rob Hyman & Eric Bazilian of The Hooters, Spin Doctors as well as Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme.

2007 saw the release of a fourth Boynton/Ford book/CD – Blue Moo, Jukebox Hits from Way Back Never which featured B.B. King, Brian Wilson, Neil Sedaka, Davy Jones, Sha Na Na, Bobby Vee, Gerry & the Pacemakers, and others.

His first full feature film score for “The Now” written and directed by Keith Boynton debuted the following year, along with incidental music for Keith Boynton’s off-off-Broadway play entitled “The Quotable Assassin”

In 2008 he completed a set of improvisational piano solos entitled Simple Truth and in 2009 he finally released the CD – Dream of the Wind - piano solos.

In 2010 he will be releasing Simple Truth and a third CD - Music of Perpetual Motion.

Continuing his collaboration with Sandra Boynton he has been co-producing music videos of their songs featuring B.B. King and John Ondrasik and the Bacon Brothers.

Currently, he is playing solo piano concerts in Connecticut and the Philadelphia area as well as collaborating with singer Beth Andrien creating a collection of extended songs for their upcoming CD’s.

Edited by knabeford on 3 Jul 2010, 23:38

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