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Ritenour at the Stockholm Jazz Festival, 2009
|Birth name||Lee Mack Ritenour|
|Born||January 11, 1952|
Los Angeles, California, United States
|Genres||Jazz, jazz-funk, jazz fusion, smooth jazz|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, composer, producer|
|Labels||Epic, Elektra, GRP, PolyGram, Decca, Peak, Concord|
|Associated acts||Dave Grusin, Fourplay|
Lee Mack Ritenour (born January 11, 1952) is an American guitarist who has been active since the late 1960s, playing numerous styles of jazz. He has been described as a "flawless" "musical chameleon" by AllMusic. Ritenour has won one Grammy Award with a sum of sixteen nominations.
Ritenour was born on January 11, 1952 in Los Angeles, California. At the age of eight he started playing guitar and four years later decided on a career in music. When he was 16 he played on his first recording session with the Mamas & the Papas. He developed a love for jazz and was influenced by guitarist Wes Montgomery. At the age of 17 he worked with Lena Horne and Tony Bennett. He studied classical guitar at the University of Southern California.
Ritenour's solo career began with the album First Course (1976), a good example of the jazz-funk sound of the 1970s, followed by Captain Fingers, The Captain's Journey (1978), and Feel the Night (1979).
In 1979, he "was brought in to beef up one of Pink Floyd's The Wall ' heaviest rock numbers, "Run Like Hell". He played "uncredited rhythm guitar" on "One of My Turns". As the 1980s began, Ritenour began to add stronger elements of pop to his music, beginning with Rit (1981). "Is It You" with vocals by Eric Tagg reached No. 15 on the Billboard pop chart and No. 27 on the Soul chart. The track peaked at number fifteen on Hot Adult Contemporary chart. He continued with the pop-oriented music for Rit/2 (1982) and Banded Together (1984), while releasing a Direct-Disk instrumental album in 1983 called On the Line. He also provided rhythm guitar on Tom Browne's album Funkin' for Jamaica. He recorded Harlequin (1985) with Dave Grusin and vocals by Ivan Lins. His next album, Earth Run, was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Jazz Fusion Performance. The album's title track was also Grammy nominated in the category of Best Instrumental Composition. Portrait (GRP, 1987) included guest performances by The Yellowjackets, Djavan, and Kenny G.
In 1988, his Brazilian influence came to the forefront on Festival, an album featuring his work on nylon-string guitar. He changed direction with his straight-ahead jazz album Stolen Moments which he recorded with saxophonist Ernie Watts, pianist Alan Broadbent, bassist John Patitucci, and drummer Harvey Mason. During the same year, he composed the theme song for the Canadian TV series Ramona.
In 1991 Ritenour and keyboardist Bob James formed the group Fourplay. He left the group in 1998 and was replaced by Larry Carlton. He released the career retrospective Overtime in 2005. Smoke n' Mirrors came out the next year with the debut of his thirteen-year-old son, Wesley, on drums.
Celebrating his fifty years as a guitarist in 2010, Ritenour released 6 String Theory, a title that refers to six musical areas covered by the use of guitar.
|1978||Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition||"The Captain's Journey"||Nominated|
|1981||Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance||RIT||Nominated|
|1985||Grammy Award for Best Arrangement on an Instrumental||"Early A.M. Attitude"||Won|
|Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance (Orchestra, Group or Soloist)||Harlequin||Nominated|
|Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocal(s)||"Harlequin"||Nominated|
|1986||Grammy Award for Best Jazz Fusion Performance, Vocal or Instrumental||Earth Run||Nominated|
|Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition||"Earth Run"||Nominated|
|1990||Grammy Award for Best Jazz Fusion Performance||Stolen Moments||Nominated|
|1993||Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Jazz Performance (Instrumental)||Between the Sheets||Nominated|
|Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Solo||"4 on 6"||Nominated|
|Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Individual or Group||Wes Bound||Nominated|
|1994||Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement with Accompanying Vocals||"Ability to Swing"||Nominated|
|1995||Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Jazz Performance||Elixir||Nominated|
|Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Jazz Performance||Larry and Lee||Nominated|
|1997||Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Jazz Performance||Alive in L.A.||Nominated|
|1997||Grammy Award for Best Classical Crossover Album||Two Worlds||Nominated|
|1977||Sugar Loaf Express||JVC|
|1978||The Captain's Journey||Elektra|
|1979||Feel the Night||Discovery|
|1983||On the Line, with Dave Grusin||GRP|
|1985||Harlequin, with Dave Grusin||GRP|
|1995||Larry & Lee, with Larry Carlton||GRP|
|1997||Alive in L.A.||GRP|
|1998||This Is Love||I.E. Music|
|2003||World Of Brazil||GPR|
|2006||Smoke 'n' Mirrors||Peak|
|2008||Amparo, with Dave Grusin||Decca|
|2010||6 String Theory||Concord|
|2015||A Twist of Rit||Concord|
|1981||Countdown Captain Fingers||43||Dance|
|Is It You||15||Hot 100|
|1982||Cross My Heart||69|
|1993||Waiting in Vain (ft. Maxi Priest)||54||R&B|
|2007||Smoke 'n' Mirrors||27||Smooth Jazz|
|Forget Me Nots||14|
|2010||Shape of My Heart (Lee Ritenour, Steve Lukather & Andy McKee)||19|
|Put the Top Down (Dave Koz ft. Lee Ritenour)||1|
|2012||Roadtrip (Michael Lington ft. Lee Ritenour)||3|
|L.A. by Bike||15|
|2015||A Little Bit of This and a Little Bit of That||5|
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