GRAMMY® Award-winning producer, composer, and arranger Ryan Truesdell was voted “Best New Artist” in the 2012 JazzTimes Critic’s Poll, and is best known for his award-winning Gil Evans Project. In his pursuit to restore and perform Evans’ music directly from his original manuscripts, Truesdell discovered over seventy new, never-before-recorded pieces, ten of which were released on CENTENNIAL: Newly Discovered Works of Gil Evans, in honor of Evans’ 100th birthday. Unanimously praised by critics, among its many accolades, CENTENNIAL received three nominations and won Evans a posthumous 2013 GRAMMY® Award for “Best Instrumental Arrangement.” The Gil Evans Project’s sophomore album, LINES OF COLOR: Gil Evans Project Live at Jazz Standard, released on the Blue Note/ArtistShare label, received a 2016 GRAMMY® Award nomination for “Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.” By recovering and performing these lost works, Truesdell has filled in essential missing pieces of Evans’ rich musical narrative, expanding the legacy of one of Jazz history’s most revered composers and arrangers.
A skilled composer and arranger in his own right, Truesdell has been commissioned by trumpeter Ingrid Jensen with the U.S.A.F. Band of the Pacific, pianist Frank Kimbrough with the University of Minnesota’s Jazz Ensemble, Owen Broder’s American Roots Project, and composed a new work for Bob Brookmeyer’s 80th birthday celebration at the Eastman School of Music. He was also awarded the First Music commission from the New York Youth Symphony’s Jazz Band Classic in 2009, and has served on the board of directors of the International Society of Jazz Arrangers & Composers (ISJAC) since 2016.
Truesdell has distinguished himself as an invaluable resource in the studio, beginning in 2004, as production assistant for Maria Schneider’s GRAMMY® Award-winning record, Concert in the Garden. He co-produced Schneider’s critically acclaimed 2007 album, Sky Blue, as well as The Thompson Fields, which won the 2016 GRAMMY® Award for “Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.” In addition to producing the Gil Evans Project’s albums, Truesdell has produced recordings for Nick Finzer’s Hear & Now, Owen Broder’s American Roots Project, Cowboy’s and Frenchmen, and Bob Brookmeyer with the NDR Big Band in Hamburg, Germany.
Truesdell is an in-demand clinician and guest artist, working with the highly regarded programs at University of North Texas, University of South Florida, New York University, The New School, and Humber College. In 2012, Truesdell embarked on a multi-concert project with the musicians of the Eastman School of Music, performing nearly 150 of Gil Evans’ historic works. As a guest conductor, Truesdell has worked with some of the leading professional ensembles from around the world including, WDR Big Band, Brussels Jazz Orchestra, and RTV Slovenia Big Band, and has given concerts at the world’s best known venues and festivals including Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, Koerner Hall at the Royal Conservatory Toronto, North Sea Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, and Umbria Jazz Festival.