Rob Mathes is an Emmy-winning, Grammy, Tony and Drama Desk Award nominated arranger/composer, music producer/director and singer/songwriter. Rob has produced recordings by Sting (his last 3 records), Rod Stewart, Carly Simon, Beth Hart, Vanessa Williams, Bettye LaVette, Matthew Morrison and the band Panic at The Disco. He is an Emmy winner for his yearly music direction of the Kennedy Center Honors for CBS and he arranged and was music director on Sting’s world tour with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He musically directed HBO’s We Are One-Obama Inauguration Concert at the Lincoln Memorial featuring Stevie Wonder, James Taylor, John Legend, U2, Beyonce and others and has MD’ed the Songwriter’s Hall Of Fame Awards for the past 15 years. He has performed on the Grammys with Bruce Springsteen and done the orchestral arrangements for his last two records. Bruce personally requested MusicCares to hire Rob as Music Director of his Grammy week Person Of The Year tribute in 2013 featuring, among others, Neil Young, Jackson Browne, Tom Morello and Ben Harper. In 2015 Rob will musically direct two evenings for the David Lynch Foundation including a Spring concert in LA featuring Moby, The Flaming Lips, Lykke Li and Angelo Badalamenti and another concert at Carnegie Hall in November.
As an arranger Rob has written orchestrations for a number of stars all over the stylistic spectrum from Elton John, Tony Bennett, Celine Dion, and Tim McGraw to Lou Reed, Mavis Staples, Jay Z, Lenny Kravitz, Sade, Eric Clapton, Avril Lavigne, Beck, Aretha Franklin, Hall and Oates, Harry Connick Jr., Fall Out Boy, Butch Walker, and Mariah Carey, also working with Classical artists such as Renée Fleming, Bryn Terfel, Deborah Voigt and Yo Yo Ma. His arrangement of the Star Spangled Banner for the 2013 Super Bowl for Renée Fleming was universally praised and will be published by Hal Leonard in 2015. He arranged “You’ll Never Walk Alone” for The Three Tenors-Live In Paris CD and was the arranger and guitarist on the last six Pavarotti and Friends concerts held each year in Modena, Italy, Luciano Pavarotti’s hometown. Many of these collaborations came from Rob’s longtime relationship with his mentor, legendary producer Phil Ramone (Billy Joel, Paul Simon, Frank Sinatra among many, many others). Rob arranged Crazy Love for Van Morrison and Ray Charles on Ray’s Genius Loves Company, the Grammy winning Album Of The Year of 2004, produced by Phil.
As a composer, Grammy-winning conductor Leonard Slatkin commissioned Rob to write a score based on Gershwin themes called “Gershwiniana” for The Los Angeles Philharmonic. His “A Standing Ground: Concertino For Orchestra” was premiered by The Nashville Symphony conducted by Slatkin in 2009. He was nominated for a Best Original Score Emmy twice for the HBO movie Thurgood, starring Lawrence Fishburne and the HBO documentary Herblock. His songs have been recorded by Bonnie Raitt, Oleta Adams, Aaron Neville, The Rascal Flatts, David Sanborn, Wynonna Judd and Vanessa Williams among others. He co-wrote a number of songs with Sting for his most recent album The Last Ship (featuring songs written for Sting’s first musical).
Rob was the guest artist for The 2000 Boston Pops National Christmas Tour and, at the same time, PBS televised Rob’s Christmas special featuring Michael McDonald, Vanessa Williams, David Sanborn, and the late great Ossie Davis. His Pop record "Evening Train" came out in 2003. He then released a double CD “Orchestral Songs” in 2008 featuring settings of Poetry by William Carlos Williams, Yeats and others recorded at Abbey Road with members of the London Symphony. He just released a new record called “Flesh and Spirit” (2014) and musically supervised and orchestrated Sting’s Broadway show The Last Ship, for which he was nominated for both a Tony and a Drama Desk Award.
Rob is an alumnus of Berklee College Of Music and studied counterpoint, harmony and orchestration for many years with Composer Myron Fink (SUNY-Purchase, Hunter College). His parents were both graduates of Yale School Of Music.