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George Winston Jim Brickman Elton John

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Jeff Van Devender

David Lanz met up with Jim Brickman. They located George Winston and introduced him to Elton John. Thus begat the music of Jeffrey van D, aka Jeff Van Devender.

Jeff was turned on to the piano at a very young age, first by having the instrument available to him as a piece of furniture in the house that responded with sound every time he would touch it. Finding their son spent a lot of his free time at the piano, Jeff's parents enrolled him in lessons early on.

After a couple years, the interest waned and lessons stopped. Within a year, Jeff heard Elton John on the radio and was hooked. After buying a couple records, he ventured to the sheet music and was drawn back to the piano stool.

The music was just difficult enough that Jeff's father commented to Jeff's mother "If he's going to keep doing that, he needs to get back to lessons." A teacher was contracted who would allow Elton John music to be a part of the lessons - "as long as he plays my music."

The hook had been set and Jeff was captivated, practicing every Elton John piece he could get his hands on. It wasn't long before other artists began to find their way into Jeff's listening realm. Jeff counts his primary influences as Keith Emerson, Lyle Mays, George Winston, Keith Jarrett, David Lanz, Rick Wakeman & Jim Brickman, to name a few.

January 1998, Jeff entered a studio in southern Minnesota for the first time with a pocket full of compositions. He recorded his first collection of pieces and released them on his debut cd titled 'Ascend." The release corresponded with a series of concerts through the Fall season.

2002 saw the followup release with a cd titled "Bending Chords." Working with John Malvey at his studio in Grand Junction, Colorado, this cd expanded horizons with accompanying orchestration on some tracks, in addition to a couple uptempo numbers.

"Don't Ever Forget" hit the streets late summer 2009. After Jeff's recently deceased father had shown him the new community/school auditorium & it's new state-of-the-art recording studio, Jeff got the idea to "go back home" for his next project. The stage of the auditorium is home to a 9-foot Yamaha grand piano. This is where "Don't Ever Forget" was recorded. After a couple attempts at some accompanying instrumentation, it quickly became apparent the live piano would be perfect just solo with no enhancements.

November 4, 2017 saw the release of "Yuletide Reflections," a collection of Christmas music recorded in Berthoud, Colorado with Brett Wilson.

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