Gavin Bondy began studying trumpet in Portland, Oregon, at the age of nine, and piano at the age of 12. Years later, amidst the doubts of his peers, he began to quietly prove that he could make his entire living as a freelance performer in the city of Portland. He played in every imaginable circumstance: wedding ceremonies, musical theater, foot races, national anthems, polka, mariachi, salsa, gospel, R&B, and funk, before joining Pink Martini in 1996.
A couple years later, Gavin founded The Shanghai Woolies. To this day, the Woolies play hot jazz, blues, pop, and swing from the 1920’s to 40’s, employing electric guitars with the horns. Gavin wrote the band’s music book by hand, in order to present some of the greatest music of the twentieth century to a world who had largely forgotten. Among its highlights are 27 full-band transcriptions of early Louis Armstrong performances.
Gavin feels very grateful to have had such wonderful teachers, and very humbled to have performed with so many amazing musicians, including Diane Schuur, Al Andalus, Al Green, The Los Angeles Philharmonic, The New York Philharmonic, The London Philharmonic, and The Cleveland Orchestra.