B i o g r a p h y
Gregory began composing on the piano at age 6 and quickly taught himself saxophone and guitar. He formed his first rock band in the early 60's and began playing professionally at age 12.
At the University of Pennsylvania, he studied composition with George Crumb in 1972. Shortly after hearing John Coltrane's "A Love Supreme," he dedicated himself exclusively to the Saxophone and transferred to Indiana University where he studied improvisation and composition. He received a BA in Jazz Improvisation and Experimental Tape in 1975, also performing at the Notre Dame Jazz Festival and receiving critical acclaim from Sonny Rollins
Moving to New York, he spent the next 15 years performing in jazz clubs and concerts and recording, as well as scoring industrial films and commercials. His first recording - "Fat Doggie" by the Greg Alper Band for Adelphi Records earned a Billboard Pick of the Week. Later, he studied orchestration and film scoring at Mannes College. After composing his first scores, he decided to move to LA in 1989 to pursue film scoring, continuing his studies in orchestration and composition at USC and UCLA. Scoring many independent feature films, cartoons (Pirates of Dark Water) and even some prime time Television (Cracker), his jazz composition and recording “Feliz” was featured in the Harrison Ford - Kristin Scott Thomas movie Random Hearts (1999).
He also composed musical scores for some of the classics of Electronic Entertainment: Dark Seed, The original Warcraft, Might and Magic and Mechwarrior 2.
In 1990, he founded the Gregory Alper Music School, providing private instruction on sax, clarinet, flute, piano, guitar, bass and jazz improvisation, and leading jazz ensembles for grades 5-11. Gregory has also been on the faculty of Children’s Music, and has won several Emmy Awards as guest soloist on the annual televised concerts.
During one of their student recitals, when Gregory’s jazz quartet performed “Watermelon Man”, a lady from the audience grabbed a mike and began scatting. She was fantastic. After a moment a smile of shocked recognition lit everyone’s face – the singer was none other than Ella Fitzgerald!
Gregory has performed with Ella Fitzgerald, Rashid Ali, John Scoffield, Adam Nussbaum, Richie Morales, Chuck Loeb, Cameron Brown, Bill Evans (sax), Ryo Kawasaki and Barry Harris.