Pellegrin seems to have multiple influences, displaying at times the density and drive of pianist McCoy Tyner, elsewhere sounding free and unpredictable, like no one but himself.
Rich Pellegrin began playing piano at the age of five, but spent his teenage years preoccupied with drums and percussion. He pursued a diversity of musical endeavors before discovering the beautiful creative process of jazz and improvised music. Rich's playing is noted for its intensity, conviction, directness of expression, and percussive yet sonorous tone quality. His debut record as a bandleader, Three-Part Odyssey, was released on OA2 Records in February 2011, and featured some of the most exciting and forward-looking musicians of Seattle's younger generation. His second record, Episodes IV-VI, has been called "strikingly original" by Earshot Jazz Magazine, "first class" by Midwest Record, and "a masterwork" by KUCI 88.9 FM (Irvine, CA). Both releases have received significant national and international airplay. His third record, Down, will be released in 2018.
In 2014, Dr. Pellegrin organized the Mizzou Improvisation Project, a three-day interdisciplinary festival which brought together a diverse range of scholars, performers, educators, improvisers, and composers. The festival included a collaborative recording session with Pellegrin's Seattle-based band and the Mizzou New Music Ensemble, material from which will be released on his next album.
Pellegrin was appointed to the University of Florida faculty in 2017 where he teaches music theory. He previously taught at the University of Missouri and at the University of Washington, where he completed his PhD in 2013.