BY DAN POPOLOSKI-
Bill Charlap, the director of William Paterson University’s Jazz Studies program, has been nominated for a Grammy in the Best Jazz Instrumental Album category.
The nod is for his work on “Uptown, Downtown”, his most recent album. It was put out under the Bill Charlap Trio, which includes Kenny Washington and Peter Washington. The collection was a celebration of the group being together for twenty years, and features nine separate tracks.
He joined William Paterson University in 2015, and has not slowed down in the industry. Just last year, the musician won a Grammy award along with Tony Bennett for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for their work on “The Silver Lining: The Songs of Jerome Kern”.
This is Charlap’s fourth overall Grammy nomination, previously earning selections for his songs, “The Bill Charlap Trio: Live at the Village Vanguard”, which was released in 2007, and “Somewhere: The Songs of Leonard Bernstein” which debuted in 2004.
The other nominees this year are “Rebirth” by Bill Childs, “Project Freedom” by Joey DeFrancesco and the People, “Open Book” by Fred Hersch, “The Dreamer is the Dream” by Chris Potter. The Bill Charlap Trio includes Charlap on piano, Peter Washington on drums, and Kenny Washington on the bass.
The New York native comes from a lauded musical family. His father, Mark, was a noted Broadway composer, even working on the adaptation of Peter Pan. Bill’s mother, Sandy Stewart, was an accomplished singer who work with legends such as Bing Crosby and Perry Como. His wife is also a famous pianist, contributing to Bill’s Grammy winning album last year.
Charlap has several live performances planned in the near future. He has a solo performance on February 4 at the Deer Head Inn in Pennsylvania, before taking off for a tour in California. He returns to the area on March 3 when the whole trio performs at the Jeanne Rimsky Theater in New York.
The Grammy’s air on CBS at 7:30 PM on Sunday, January 28 live from Madison Square Garden. However, Charlap’s category will be announced during a pre-show stream which is live starting at 3 PM.