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The son of two opera singers, Robert Martin was trained as a classical French horn player at the prestigious Curtis Institute in Philadelphia. There he studied with Mason Jones, principle horn of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and played week after week under the greatest conductors in the world. He would use that experience to good advantage when transitioning into the realm of recording and world tours with the upper echelon of pop music stars. Before leaving Philadelphia, Robert played horn on numerous hit records produced by the highly successful writing team of Gamble, Huff and Bell. Though his recording career began as a French horn player, he would soon be recognized for his prodigious skills as a keyboard player, sax player and vocalist.
Robert used all those talents while recording and touring with the successful pop group from Woodstock, Orleans. He then auditioned for Frank Zappa and performed on all of Frank’s tours and live albums from that time on. In between tours with Zappa, he earned the position of Musical Director for Bette Midler, and toured or performed with Paul McCartney, Michael McDonald, Stevie Nicks, hornsBoz Scaggs, Etta James (on tour with The Rolling Stones), Patti LaBelle, Bonnie Raitt, Kenny Loggins and many others.
In addition to recording his own solo album for MCA Records, Robert also recorded with Prince, the Moody Blues, Lyle Lovett, Gladys Knight, Glenn Frey, Bobby Caldwell, Michael Bolton, David Sanborn, The Stylistics, The O’Jays, Sheila E, The Blues Brothers, and a long list of other artists. Robert played keyboards, , sang backing vocals, arranged and co-produced Wilson Pickett’s 1987 Grammy nominated album on Motown, “American Soul Man.” That same year, he also broke into the inner circle of L.A. commercial singers and sang on numerous local and national spots for Ron Hicklin, Don Piestrupp and Gary Ramal.
Since 1986, Robert has owned and operated his own studio and branched out into programming, engineering, mixing, mastering and producing music for advertising, film and television. He composed the music for the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning television show Cybill on CBS. He also composed for Baywatch, Martial Law, and three seasons of Lifetime Television’s Intimate Portrait series.