Boiling, Claude, pop-jazz pianist, composer, leader; b. Cannes, France, April 10, 1930. He began formal piano training at age 12, receiving thorough grounding in the classical repertoire while mastering the jazz idiom; later he studied harmony and composition with Maurice Durufle in Paris, where he immersed himself in the jazz scene. Boiling became a prominent figure in the crossover movement when he composed his “Sonata for Two Pianists” (1970) for Jean-Bernard Pommier. His “Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio,” written in 1975 for Jean-Pierre Rampai, became an internationally successful recording, attaining gold-record status in 1981. He also wrote “California Suite” (1976), “Suite for Violin and Jazz Piano Trio” (1978), “Suite for Chamber Orch. and Jazz Piano Trio” (1983), and “Suite for Cello and Jazz Piano Trio” (1984). A light classical player and swing-oriented jazz musician, he has had great success with a pieces that blend jazz and classical material and helped to spur a trend for classical artist to get more involved with jazz.
Claude Boiling Plays Duke Ellington (1956); Boiling’s Band’s Blowing (1963); Original Ragtime (1966); Suite for Flute andJazz Piano (1975); Concerto for Classical Guitar and Jazz Piano (1978); Toot Suite (1980); Live at the Meridien (1984); Boiling Plays Ellington, Vol. 1 and 2 (1991); Black, Brown and Beige (1993).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Lewis Porter