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Sharing the biggest stages with some of the greatest R&B legends, jazz lions and hip-hop heavyweights in the game, Chris Rob has established his presence on all fronts as a pianist, singer, songwriter and producer. Just as a true point guard is a rare commodity in the NBA, Rob’s musicianship and ability to get the most out of his fellow musicians has given him the reputation as an MVP alongside music’s very greatest.
Chris Rob’s latest album, Mental Notes, shares all the facets of his effortless gifts and has garnered recognition from Soultracks.com as one of the top albums of 2010. His most noteworthy accomplishments to date include his performance with Stevie Wonder at President Obama's Pre-Inaugural Ball, being featured on Kanye West’s Grammy award-winning album Graduation, writing and producing with legendary Motown recording artist Leon Ware, as well as serving as music director for John Legend’s Get Lifted Tour, culminating in the DVD release of John Legend: Live at the House of Blues. His latest single, “Sex. Money. & Drugs” is featured on the soundtrack of Tyler Perry’s forthcoming film We the Peeples, while his most recent club banger, "Found Myself" with co-producer DJ Ian Friday, hit number one on Traksource.com dance floor charts. When Rob is not on stage or in the studio, he’s working behind the scenes as a writer and stage director for his brother, comedian/actor/musician Craig Robinson (“The Office”), as well as performing with hip hop artists Talib Kweli and Black Moon. He also has scored for several independent movies, including "Phunny Business", "For Colored Boys" and "Bittersweets."
In Rob’s case, doing what he does best involves gracefully crossing over genres in every performance. From the age of four in Chicago’s south side, he studied classical piano, and quickly learned drums, bass and guitar. By the next decade he was in jazz clubs, refining his skills and developing his unique stage presence. Rob cites the Godfather of Soul, James Brown, as his chief inspiration, along with Herbie Hancock, Prince, John Coltrane and Rakim. Over the years, he has graced many stages across the globe including Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, The Apollo Theater, The Blue Note, Essence Music Festival (New Orleans), Sai International Auditorium (India), Jakharta International Java Jazz Festival (Indonesia), Vitoria-Gasteiz Jazz Festival (Spain), and the Royal Albert Hall (London). He has also appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Grammy Awards, VH1's Hip Hop Honors as well as NBC's "The Office" and "Last Comic Standing", on which he wrote and performed a live skit. Currently, Rob is putting the finishing touches on a live album, scoring for several independent films and will appear on Lauryn Hill’s highly anticipated studio project.
Widely recognized and praised by his peers, Chris Rob is a musician that has built a professional reputation for his distinct talent. “This brother captivates your mind with authentic funk and soul in his own sincere fashion,” says critically acclaimed DJ Spinna. Chris Rob makes an intimate connection with music that audiences feel immediately, which Meshell N’degeocello puts even more succinctly: “His music is a reflection of who he is, a beautiful person.”