2009 Guggenheim Fellowship awardee Billy Childs has become one of the most in demand composers, arrangers and pianists in jazz. Billy Childs is a Los Angeles jazz treasure. As a pianist, he possesses the improvisatory skills and powerful sense of swing one associates with world-class artists. His is not just a jazz group with a string-quartet annex. He has sought to blend the two factions into a completely coherent sound.
In February 2006 Childs was the recipient of two Grammy awards: one for Best Instrumental Composition (for “Into The Light” from his 2005 release “Lyric”) and the other for Best Arrangement Accompanying a Vocalist (for Chris Botti and Sting). He was the recipient of the Grammy award for Best jazz Album of the Year in 2011. Thus far, in his career, Childs has garnered ten Grammy nominations and three Grammy awards.
He is a thoughtful observer of the jazz scene with a born educator’s insightful view of its many complexities. Childs is an inventive composer and arranger whose efforts in those areas consistently expand the dimensions of the jazz genre — and beyond. His commissioned works have been performed by ensembles spanning from the Los Angeles Philharmonic to the Dorian Wind Quintet.
For his new album, “Autumn: In Moving Pictures—Jazz/Chamber Music, Volume 2,” Mr. Childs has composed five original pieces for his Chamber Ensemble and supplemented them with treatments of Gabriel Faure’s “Pavane” (a classical warhorse in dance tempo) and Bill Evans’s “Waltz for Debby” (a jazz standard with classical implications). It’s impossible to tell where the jazz ends and the classical music begins.