Albertiís memoir starts with his childhood in Brooklyn, and lists his first music job as a teenage pianist leading a jazz quintet in a Brooklyn restaurant. He worked summer jobs in the Catskills, played for a while with Charlie Spivakís band, worked in New York night clubs, did club dates, and accompanied singers. Playing for singers led to conducting for them, and one of those conducting jobs, for Johnny Mathis, took him to Los Angeles. The job didnít last long, but Alberti liked the L.A. area, and before long he left New York for good. His final gesture before he drove west was to chuck his club date accordion into the East River.
A thirteen-week gig in Las Vegas conducting for the DeCastro sisters turned into two years of backing up acts at the Sands with his quartet and conducting for Keely Smith. Finally back in L.A., he made the nightclub circuit, did a few conducting jobs, and then landed the piano chair with the ABC-TV show "Hollywood Palace." The bandleader was Les Brown, who was later replaced by Mitch Ayers. Soon Alberti was in demand in the TV studios, playing and arranging for the King Family Hour, the Tom Jones show, the Milton Berle Comedy Hour, the Bob Hope series, the Dean Martin show, etc. Eventually he became one of the staff pianists with NBC-TV. He tells his life story in an engaging manner, with many anecdotes along the way.
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Born in Brooklyn, New York, Bob Alberti has spent a lifetime as a professional pianist, composer, conductor and arranger. With jazz as his primary love, he always gravitated to the famous clubs on Fifty-Second Street in New York, gaining a multiplicity of influences from Art Tatum, Bud Powell. Billy Taylor, Oscar Peterson, George Shearing and Bill Evans as well as from his teacher, famed pianist Teddy Wilson.
After playing in New York with his own trio, Bob eventually joined the name bands of the '50s, eventually ending up with Les Brown's Band of Renown in Los Angeles. He also spent a number of years as personal conductor to well-known stars including Paul Anka, Johnny Mathis, Jane Morgan, Jerry Vale, Keely Smith, Shari Lewis, Donald O'Connor, Jack Jones, Patti Page, Kay Starr and Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme. Bob Now plays jazz festivals, symphonies and club dates in the southeast.
Bob spent 23 years at NBC in Burbank, California where he was in charge of music for the long-running Bob Hope television series. Prior to that time, he spent seven years at ABC Television in Hollywood. He was twice nominated for an Emmy in musical direction. While at NBC in the '70s and '80s, he served as alternate pianist on the "Tonight Show" with Doc Severinsen's orchestra.
Bob currently has five CDs available: "PASTELS", "NICE 'N' EASY", "EVERYTHING I LOVE" featuring tenor saxophonist Harry Allen, "CHRISTMAS FAVORITES" and a recent collaboration with bassist Ben Tucker titled "THE MASTERS." Bob Firmly believes that jazz should be pleasantly acceptable to aficionados and laymen alike, and should not assault the senses. Wherever he performs, the comments are unanimous, with most people saying that they wish there was more understandable jazz of this type to be heard. The concept is melodic, harmonic and rhythmic, offering the listener a memorable and joyous experience.
Bob also recently completed a book, "UP THELADDER AND OVER THE TOP, Memoirs of a Hollywood Studio Musician." The book is now in print and can be ordered directly or through a number of on-line sources. In his current home base on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, he's active in the Hilton Head Jazz Society, and conducts the Hilton Head Symphonic Pops orchestra, blending the jazz idiom with the orchestra.