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R Grunwald has played on sessions for hundreds of musicians. The Toronto keyboardist has been faithful to two different singer-songwriters, jazz/pop chanteuse Jill Barber and songwriter Donovan Woods, for the better part of a decade. He’s played with New York City’s Three Famed Cantors, and scored film and TV shows including the award-winning Yid Life Crisis (“It’s basically Curb Your Enthusiasm, but set in Montreal and in Yiddish,” he says.)
Now he’s ready to step onto the public stage with his own music—alone. But there’s one person who will be with him every night he performs, though she won’t be there physically. His 96-year-old grandmother, who has lived in Chile after fleeing her native Poland in 1946, is the primary inspiration for Grunwald’s first solo album. It’s called Oma — which is the German word for ‘grandmother’.
Today, Grunwald shares the new video for album opener, “Wood Meets Water”. “Stark and stately, this melody opens the album and serves as an introduction to this cycle of compositions,” says Grunwald. “Wood – the starting material for many objects in our lives. Water – a substance that gives life and serves as a conduit. The place where Wood meets Water is the meeting between raw materials and the medium which transports and transforms that material into its final form.”